Tag Archives: octopussy

That’s My Little Octopussy

Recently, while visiting the tony Ritz-Carlton Palm Beach, I cruised the coast and saw nearby this little boat–142 feet long.

The Octopussy, built in The Netherlands by Heesen, was built to be the fastest yacht over 100 feet in the world. OwnerFrank Staluppi of New York, keeps her anchored (you may lease her for a cruise or buy her for a mere $8 Million U.S. or so) in Manalapan. He also owns the Dillinger, Moonraker and The World Is Not Enough yachts. The interior decor most closely matches her sister yacht, For Your Eyes Only!

See her 007 bar and what makes her so yar at this Octopussy page.

Maud Adams is Octopussy

Defying tradition, Maud Adams became the first actress to twice star in a James Bond movie in leading roles. Her first foray into Bondage occured with the 1974 film THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN and she later returned for the title role in OCTOPUSSY.

Adams, born Maud Wikstrom, was a little surprised to be called back for another Bond film, as it was her understanding that EON had a long term policy against rehiring prior Bond Girls that were in leading roles. In fact, she at first believed it to be an accident that she was asked until she had more indepth talks with Cubby Broccoli. During publicity for OCTOPUSSY, she once told the press: “Before I appeared in THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN, I had only played in minor movies. Cubby feels that he really discovered me. He had closely followed my career and wanted to bring me back. He thought the part of Octopussy was perfect for me.”

Her association with Bond didn`t stop there. She was an uncredited extra in A VIEW TO A KILL, where if you look very closely as Bond steps off the San Francisco trolly, you just might be able to spot her. Off the record, she was Roger Moore`s favorite actress to work with, though officially he “loved them all”.

She has continued to work past her Bond films doing many television and film features, while still maintaining close ties to the Broccoli family and the 007 legend. She`s attended many of the premieres for the Bond films since her own and in the fall of 1999 she teamed up with several other Bond Girls such as Lois Chiles and Lana Wood, all still looking as beautiful as ever, to promote the release of the Special Edition DVD`s. On February 14th, 2000, she made a welcome guest appearance on FOX-Television`s THAT 70`S SHOW, where she worked with three other ex-Bond Girls: Tanya Roberts, Barbara Carrera and Kristina Wayborn.

Born: 2/12/1945
Lulea, Sweden

Octopussy (And The Living Daylights)

The book Octopussy is a collection of short stories,written by Ian Fleming, but published, as a collective book, after his death. The book Octopussy contains three short stories. The first is “Octopussy”, the second “The Living Daylights” and the third is “The Property Of A Lady”. “The Living Daylights” was published first in 1962 under the title The Berlin Escape and was first published in Argosy magazine. “Octopussy” and “The Property Of A Lady” were first published in Playboy magazine.

Octopussy The Hero: James Bond; The Villian: Dexter Smythe; Supporting Character: Oberhauser; Location covered: Jamaica

Octopussy isn`t just one of my favorite Ian Fleming stories. It`s one of my favorites stories. Period. It`s a rather unusual story, with Bond actually being a minor character. Also, the “villain” isn`t your typical villain. In Fleming`s hand, Dexter Smythe, is a multi-faceted, complex, weak, guilt ridden man.

The story is set in Jamaica, in particular, a small, out of the way strip of beachfront property where the lonely recluse, Major Smythe, lives. Smythe, once an officer of the Royal Marines, but now retired, spends his lonely days drinking and tending to “his people”. “His people” are actually an assortment of sea life that reside inside the reef right off the beach that Major Smythe owns. His wife is dead, and now he has only the fish to take care of, which he dutifully does everyday. He names every single one of the sea creatures, and even stirs up the sand so that the bottom dwellers will be able to find something to eat.

“He referred to them as “people”, and since reef fish stick to their territories as closely as do most small birds, he knew them all, after two years, intimately, “loved” them, and believed that they loved him in return. They certainly knew him as the denizens of zoos know their keepers, because he was a daily and a regular provider, scraping off algae and stirring up the sand and rocks for the bottome feeders…”—page 13.

You can almost feel a twinge of sadness for the character. Smythe must be desperately sad and a bit senile to believe that fish could love him, yet this bizarre belief makes Smythe a much more tragic character, and thus makes us sympathetic towards him. Major Dexter Smythe may have been loving towards sea life, but he had a secret gnawing away at him.

“…tropical sloth had gradually riddled him so that, while outwardly he appeared a piece of fairly solid hardwood, inside the varnished surface, the termites of sloth, self indulgence, guilt over an ancient sin, and general disguest with himself had eroded his once hard core into dust”— page 12.

“So Major Smythe was bored, bored to death, and, but for one factor in his life , he would long ago have swalloed the bottle of barbituates he had easily acquired from a local doctor”.—page 13

What sin had Dexter Smythe committed that has gnawed away at his conscience for so many years? He murdered a man in cold blood, and stole quite a fortune in gold bars. Bond knows this, and he`s come to Jamaica to give Major Smythe the opportunity to turn himself in. In Jamaica, Smythe recounts the story of what happened and why he killed a man called Oberhauser. He even goes into length describing how he covered up the crime.

“Oberhauser`s sausage was a real moutaineers meal -tough, well fatted, and strongly garlicked. Bits of it stuck uncomfortably between Major Smythe`s teeth. He dug them out with a sliver of a matchstick and spat them on the ground. Then his Intelligence-wise mind came into operation, and he meticulously searched among the stones and grass, picked up the scraps, and swallowed them. From now on he was a criminal…He was a cop turned robber. He must remember that!”—page 34.”

Page 47 holds a neat plot twist, with Smythe finding out why this particularly obscure case was of such interest to Bond. After hearing the why`s and the how`s of the murder tale, Bond tells Smythe the police will be by in a week to arrest him. Is that a hint Smythe wonders? A hint to commit suicide? To spare the court and the taxpayers the time and money of a trial? Bond leaves, and Smythe begins to wonder what his next move will be. Will he try and defend his actions in court? Will he flee the country? Will he kill himself? The choice ends up being made for Smythe. Justice prevails in a bizarre and ironic twist of fate for the Major.

The Living Daylights The Hero: James Bond; The Villain: Trigger; Supporting Characters: “M”, Captain Sender, 272; Location covered: East Berlin

The Living Daylights is yet another of Ian Fleming`s best stories. In this one, Bond is assigned to provide cover for a defector code named 272. 272 will try and make the escape from East Berlin over to the West side and into freedom. However, the KGB have already been put on alert by a double agent, and not only know the escape route 272 will use, but now have one of their best snipers, code named “Trigger”, to assasinate 272 before he can cross the wall. Fans who`ve already seen the movie will certainly suspect a few of the plot points and twists that Fleming provides. However, enough original material remains intact to make this worth your time to read. What`s impressive about the story was the absolute dread that Bond felt in having to murder an enemy agent in cold blood. Even though “Trigger” is the enemy, Fleming does such a wonderful job of portraying Bond`s anxieties about the mission, that we yet again see Bond, not as an all-powerful superhero, but as an ordinary man. A man that could be any one of us. In several passages, Fleming remarks about the sweat pouring off of 007`s body. In order to complete his mission, 007 has a bit to drink, which causes an angry outburst between James and his assistant, Sender.

Bond took a stiff drink of the whiskey before he donned the hideous cowl that now stank of his sweat. Captain Sender had tried to prevent him, and when he failed, had threatened to call up Head of Station and report Bond for breaking training.

“Look my friend”, said Bond wearily, “I`ve got to commit a murder tonight. Not you. Me. So be a good chap and stuff it, would you?” —page 86

Also of interest to readers is the relationship between Bond and “M”. There`s some mutual feelings of, dare I say, love, or at least respect for one another. “M” realizes this is going to be a tough assignment for Bond, and tries to shoulder much of the responsibility for it and to take off the weight of dread that 007 must be feeling.

“Where do you come in, 007?” M. looked coldly across the desk. “You know where you come in. You`ve got to kill this sniper. And you`ve got to kill him before he gets 272. That`s all. Is that understood?”. The clear blue eyes remained cold as ice. But Bond knew that they remained so only with an effort of will. M. did`nt like sending any man to a killing. But, when it had to be done, he always put on this fierce, cold act of command. Bond knew why. It was to take some of the pressure, some of the guilt, off the killer`s shoulders. —-page 67

Ian does a fantastic job putting in plot twists and turns, and intermixing them with real, discernible tension. From a beautiful cello player to “strawberry jam”, this story`s got it all!

The Property of a Lady The Hero: James Bond; The Villian: Maria Freudenstein Supporting Characters: Dr. Fanshawe; Kenneth Snowman; Mary Goodnight; Location covered: Sotheby`s

This one is the shortest of the short stories, and consequently has the least amount of character development. Also, too many characters are in this story, in my opinion, for a short story. The plot, in summary, is the investigation into a gift, received by a Miss Maria Freudenstein, working for M.I.6, which may have come from the KGB. Maria is due to receive the proceeds from the auction at Sotheby`s of the Emerald Sphere, and Bond, along with art expert Kenneth Snowman, goes to the auction to see who it is that will be there to bump up the price. The KGB may be sending someone to outbid everyone else at the auction, as a way of repayment for double agent services rendered by Miss Freudenstein. There`s not any surprises in this tale, and it`s much more of a straight forward story than anything else. It`ll give you a nice education in auction ettiquette though.

For Your Eyes Also: John Glen’s Autobiography

I thoroughly enjoyed John Glen’s new autobiography. Glen jumps into the action as fast any Bond thriller on the big screen. His work on eight of the EON Bond flicks takes up the bulk of this fascinating new book.

Within the first few paragraphs the reader is plunged onto the icy mountains of Baffin Island where Glen is preparing second unit duties on his second Bond, 1977’s The Spy Who Loved Me. The incredible teaser stunt, which most Bond fans are familiar with and which is by many considered the best Bond stunt ever, is explored in depth. Bedding down in the icy cold, John Glen writes of Willy Bogner’s legitimate fear at the deadly stunt but bravery in going when needed in one thrilling take from thousands of feet above icy rocks. I learned plenty here, including Glen’s being at risk of freezing himself into a popsicle on location, more than once! You may never view the opener of TSWLM the same way again.

Things were different in the movie industry in recent years, especially in the area of safety for principal personnel, and Glen explains how he risked physical danger or death quite a number of times on his Bonds, between the late 1960’s and late ‘80s. Even Roger Moore assured his safety on one Octopussy shoot working under a moving train by insisting that Glen accompany him on the tracks beneath the moving behemoth-his way of ensuring Glen himself felt the stunt was truly a safe one!

The chapter describing second unit work for On Her Majesty’s Secret Service is impressive and a treat for OHMSS fans overall, including yet one more perspective on how George Lazenby must have felt trying to fill Scotland’s largest shoes. Glen apparently was as much a hero of the film as lead director Peter Hunt, and his was much of the creative genius behind the bobsled fight and ski sequences. DVD fans may seem some of the same extra material covered again in Glen’s book, especially the information on License To Kill, but For My Eyes Only is overall a gritty triumph about a hardworking man who waited 30 years to break into lead directing with For Your Eyes Only.

A sad footnote is that Glen’s LTK tested higher than any previous Bond film with test audiences, but was demolished between Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade and Batman, to name just two 1989 summer blockbusters. Underscored throughout the book is the essential nature of the director to any Bond film, from Terence Young and Dr. No to Michael Apted and The World Is Not Enough, the director gets huge leeway regarding casting, script development, exotic locations and stunt choices, to name a few.

Glen’s view from the top explores in some detail how Cubby and Barbara Broccoli, Michael Wilson and the screenwriters thought, plotted and risked hunches and millions on the casting and scripting of the greatest film series in history. Lacking is any moving in-depth background on Glen himself, however. Two marriages are treated almost as footnotes in the book. Glen eventually brought his wife on location with him, but apparently spent nearly five decades “late at the office”.

The book and jacket design lean heavily on the James Bond image and EON 007 logo. I found it bizarre that the designer did not clean up the famous image cropped in close up of George Lazenby in front of “Big Ben,” for example, but left “overhangs” atop of the heads of both Lazenby and Dalton on the front cover. My copy also had ink dropped out on certain pages, lightening some of the photo captions almost beyond recognition. The jacket and book design are still pleasing to the eye, however. This book was certainly aimed at the interested 007 fan. Many pleasant stills are included of action, cast and crew. Some never-before seen photos are included among them. Further insights are also given into Cubby Broccoli’s generosity and a humorous foreword is included by Roger Moore, CBE.

–For My Eyes Only is published in hardback and is available now from various sources including Dave Worral’s Collectors’ Club.

Backgammon, Kamal Khan!

Backgammon is a game for two players, played on a board consisting of twenty-four narrow triangles called points. The triangles alternate in color and are grouped into four quadrants of six triangles each. The quadrants are referred to as a player`s home board and outer board, and the opponent`s home board and outer board. The home and outer boards are separated from each other by a ridge down the center of the board called the bar.

The points are numbered for either player starting in that player`s home board. The outermost point is the twenty-four point, which is also the opponent`s one point. Each player has fifteen checkers of his own color. The initial arrangement of checkers is: two on each player`s twenty-four point, five on each player`s thirteen point, three on each player`s eight point, and five on each player`s six point.

Both players have their own pair of dice and a dice cup used for shaking. A doubling cube, with the numerals 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 64 on its faces, is used to keep track of the current stake of the game.

The object of the game is for a player to move all of his checkers into his own home board and then bear them off. The first player to bear off all of his checkers wins the game.

To start the game, each player throws a single die. This determines both the player to go first and the numbers to be played. If equal numbers come up, then both players roll again until they roll different numbers. The player throwing the higher number now moves his checkers according to the numbers showing on both dice. After the first roll, the players throw two dice and alternate turns.

The roll of the dice indicates how many points, or pips, the player is to move his checkers. The checkers are always moved forward, to a lower-numbered point. The following rules apply:

To start the game, each player throws a single die. This determines both the player to go first and the numbers to be played. If equal numbers come up, then both players roll again until they roll different numbers. The player throwing the higher number now moves his checkers according to the numbers showing on both dice. After the first roll, the players throw two dice and alternate turns.

The roll of the dice indicates how many points, or pips, the player is to move his checkers. The checkers are always moved forward, to a lower-numbered point. The following rules apply:

1. A checker may be moved only to an open point, one that is not occupied by two or more opposing checkers.

2. The numbers on the two dice constitute separate moves. For example, if a player rolls 5 and 3, he may move one checker five spaces to an open point and another checker three spaces to an open point, or he may move the one checker a total of eight spaces to an open point, but only if the intermediate point (either three or five spaces from the starting point) is also open.

3. A player who rolls doubles plays the numbers shown on the dice twice. A roll of 6 and 6 means that the player has four sixes to use, and he may move any combination of checkers he feels appropriate to complete this requirement.

A player must use both numbers of a roll if this is legally possible (or all four numbers of a double). When only one number can be played, the player must play that number. Or if either number can be played but not both, the player must play the larger one. When neither number can be used, the player loses his turn. In the case of doubles, when all four numbers cannot be played, the player must play as many numbers as he can.

Hitting and Entering

A point occupied by a single checker of either color is called a blot. If an opposing checker lands on a blot, the blot is hit and placed on the bar.

Any time a player has one or more checkers on the bar, his first obligation is to enter those checker(s) into the opposing home board. A checker is entered by moving it to an open point corresponding to one of the numbers on the rolled dice.

For example, if a player rolls 4 and 6, he may enter a checker onto either the opponent`s four point or six point, so long as the prospective point is not occupied by two or more of the opponent`s checkers.

If neither of the points is open, the player loses his turn. If a player is able to enter some but not all of his checkers, he must enter as many as he can and then forfeit the remainder of his turn.

After the last of a player`s checkers has been entered, any unused numbers on the dice must be played, by moving either the checker that was entered or a different checker

Once a player has moved all of his fifteen checkers into his home board, he may commence bearing off. A player bears off a checker by rolling a number that corresponds to the point on which the checker resides, and then removing that checker from the board. Thus, rolling a 6 permits the player to remove a checker from the six point.

If there is no checker on the point indicated by the roll, the player must make a legal move using a checker on a higher-numbered point. If there are no checkers on higher-numbered points, the player is permitted (and required) to remove a checker from the highest point on which one of his checkers resides. A player is under no obligation to bear off if he can make an otherwise legal move.

Backgammon is played for an agreed stake per point. Each game starts at one point. During the course of the game, a player who feels he has a sufficient advantage may propose doubling the stakes. He may do this only at the start of his own turn and before he has rolled the dice.

A player who is offered a double may refuse, in which case he concedes the game and pays one point. Otherwise, he must accept the double and play on for the new higher stakes. A player who accepts a double becomes the owner of the cube and only he may make the next double.

Subsequent doubles in the same game are called redoubles. If a player refuses a redouble, he must pay the number of points that were at stake prior to the redouble. Otherwise, he becomes the new owner of the cube and the game continues at twice the previous stakes. There is no limit to the number of redoubles in a game. At the end of the game, if the losing player has borne off at least one checker, he loses only the value showing on the doubling cube (one point, if there have been no doubles). However, if the loser has not borne off any of his checkers, he is gammoned and loses twice the value of the doubling cube. Or, worse, if the loser has not borne off any of his checkers and still has a checker on the bar or in the winner`s home board, he is backgammoned and loses three times the value of the doubling cube.

The following optional rules are in widespread use.

Beavers. When a player is doubled, he may immediately redouble (beaver) while retaining possession of the cube. The original doubler has the option of accepting or refusing as with a normal double.

Automatic doubles. If identical numbers are thrown on the first roll, the stakes are doubled. The doubling cube is turned to 2 and remains in the middle. Players usually agree to limit the number of automatic doubles to one per game

The Jacoby Rule. Gammons and backgammons count only as a single game if neither player has offered a double during the course of the game. This rule speeds up play by eliminating situations where a player avoids doubling so he can play on for a gammon.

Irregularities:

The dice must be rolled together and land flat on the surface of the right-hand section of the board. The player must reroll both dice if a die lands outside the right-hand board, or lands on a checker, or does not land flat.

A turn is completed when the player picks up his dice. If the play is incomplete or otherwise illegal, the opponent has the option of accepting the play as made or of requiring the player to make a legal play. A play is deemed to have been accepted as made when the opponent rolls his dice or offers a double to start his own turn.

If a player rolls before his opponent has completed his turn by picking up the dice, the player`s roll is voided. This rule is generally waived any time a play is forced or when there is no further contact between the opposing forces.

octopussy – book to film transformation

Very little of Ian Fleming’s book Octopussy made it onto the big screen. Major Dexter Smythe was the main character in Ian`s short story, but gets only a passing reference in the film. In the book, Bond tracks down the greedy Major to Jamaica, not Sri Lanka, as in the film.

Octopussy, in the novel, was in reference to the Major`s pet Octopus that dined off his beach, whereas in the movie, it referred to a beautiful jewel smuggler. Oberhauser was Smythe`s guide through rough German mountain terrain, yet is not mentioned by name in the film. The location of Germany is used in both the book and film, but not for the same reasons.

The other short story the film Octopussy was based upon was called The Property Of A Lady. The film combined the character of Kenneth Snowman and Dr. Fanshawe into Jim Fanning, who did accompany Bond to Sotheby`s in the film. In the book Bond tried to spot the person bumping up the price, whereas in the film Bond `bumps up the price`. In the film, the Faberge is the object d`art, whereas in the book, it was called the Emerald Sphere.

Faye dunaway and sybil danning, bond babes

Sybil Danning and Faye Dunaway were both considered for the title character in “Octopussy”. It`s doubtful that Dunaway would`ve seriously considered playing a Bond Girl at that point in her career, but B-Movie Queen Sybil Danning was ready for action. “Would she make love or war to James Bond in OCTOPUSSY?” As it turned out, neither. They both eventually lost out to Maud Adams, who screen tested James Brolin in his attempt to replace Roger Moore.

MeatLoaf should have taken a page from the book of Sybil Danning: never talk about a role you think you`re going to get until you`ve actually gotten it.

For those of you who don`t remember 1982 (yes, it was a real year) or weren`t born yet, you may be asking: “Sybil who?”. Sybil Danning was B-movie queen quietly working her way up the ranks of Hollywood. Octopussy could have become her big break. Instead, it became her big heartbreak.

Incidentally, Octopussy was not the first Bond movie she was up for. Danning was set to be cast in the role that Corrine Clery took in the 1979 film Moonraker, but because of a French cofinancing deal, that role was given to a native actress instead.

She was felt out  in 1981 and 1982 to determine her interest in playing the title role in Octopussy. Before she even had the part, she was posing for fashion photographer Firooz Zahedi in extremely suggestive Bond-like publicity stills, almost all of which involved either some sort of leather get-up or black evening gown complimented with the obligatory handgun. She graced the cover of Prevue Magazine in the summer of 1982 wearing a vulcanized black leather swimsuit with the zipper drawn all the way to the navel to display her, um, ample talents, and holding a gun with a caption that read: “SYBIL DANNING Will she make love or war to James Bond in OCTOPUSSY”?

The hype for Danning had already begun despite the fact that she hadn`t even signed a contract. But she apparently had gotten a look at the first draft.

“Most of the Bond girls are not really interesting”, said Danning. “Octopussy has to be much, much more. She must be unpredictable and dangerous; neither Bond nor the audience must ever know what she`ll do next: betray him or befriend him. That`s what their story is really about”.

“Their story” would be Richard Maibaum`s. Dick had created a treatment far darker than the Octopussy you see today. In his first draft Octopussy was a supervillainess on a quest for vengeance against Blofeld and SPECTRE; a retalation of sorts for a defeat her organization suffered at Blofeld`s hands. She recruits 007 in her revenge scheme knowing that Blofeld had killed Bond`s wife, Tracy, and would most certainly want to help bring Blofeld down (apparently being dropped 1000 feet down a chimney stack isn`t enough to kill off a supervillain these days). Bond and Octopussy were to team up to take on Blofeld and even disarm a super techno-weapon called the OCTO-PC (perhaps some sort of personal computer?). We`ll never know exactly what Maibaum had in mind because George MacDonald Fraser was brought on to steer the story in a different direction; away from Blofeld, SPECTRE, and any legal entanglements using them could bring about.

A thorough search through Maibaum`s archives may one day yield more clues to this interesting premise but it`s worth noting that yesterday’s discarded story treatments are often tomorrows plot lines. Octopussy would be made a bit softer; not quite as ruthless and certainly an admirer of James Bond. The Octopussy of Maibaum`s original draft would become, in perhaps an unconscious way, Elektra King, some 16 years later. In The World Is Not Enough, Elektra, the super villainess, recruits Bond, unknowingly, into her web to destroy her father and avenge her mother`s legacy.

Danning spoke too soon and the role was offered to Maud Adams. The rest is history, including Danning`s career. She was forever stuck in B-grade flicks and softcore erotica. The moral of the story: don`t count your chickens until they`ve hatched.

Persis Khambatta

Persis Khambatta, a former Miss India and Miss Universe winner, was, according to published reports at the time, being considered for the title role in the 1983 Bond flick Octopussy. The then 32 year old actress was eliminated from consideration as being an `obvious choice`. She had previously starred in Star Trek: The Motion Picture as Ilia. She died suddenly in 1998 from a heart attack at her home in Bombay, India.

A View To A Kill: Tom Selleck

Tom Selleck was one star name casually thrown about for the “new 007”. How serious he was looked at is unknown. He was originally approached for the role of Indiana Jones in RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK but could not take the role because of his commitment to MAGNUM P.I.

People who would discount Selleck as a legitimate contender because he is American need to remember that James Brolin was screen tested opposite Maud Adams for Octopussy before Roger Moore finally settled his contract dispute and played the role for the sixth time.

Review: Octopussy (1983) – Robert Baum

asds(Remember When All This Was News? Connery’s Return? Moore’s Retirement?)

Roger Moore essays the role of Ian Fleming’s secret agent 007 for the sexth, that is sixth time, pardon the pun. James Bond’s newest cinematic mission, other than surviving some serious competition from the likes of Return of the Jedi and Superman III, finds the veteran spy taking on an exiled Afghan, a subversive Soviet soldier, and Octopussy.

John Glen, director of Moore’s last assignment, For Your Eyes Only (1981) returns. The twelfth installment of the series shows no signs of serving as a coda though Father Time is certainly catching up with Moore. At nearly 56 one can only wonder when he’ll be handing in his licence to kill.

Following a spectacular opening sequence, as they usually are in the Bond pictures, Bond is at the office. There he is chatting up Miss Moneypenny (Lois Maxwell) and her young, comely assistant (Michaela Clavell, daughter of Shogun author James Clavell). He gets a briefing from his superior M (Robert Brown, filling the shoes of the late Bernard Lee) and the Minister of Defence (Geoffrey Keen) following the death of a fellow MI6 operative.

Bond’s latest undertaking whisks him from an auction at Southeby’s for a jewel-laden egg to an encounter in India with a charismatic Afghan named Kamal Khan (Louis Jourdan). Shortly thereafter he has a brief tryst with Kamal’s alluring mistress (Kristina Wayborn), becomes a prisoner, and later a quarry of Khan.

Of course there is the Bond woman. Maud Adams, who played the mistress of Moore’s foe in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), returns to Bondage in the role of Octopussy. She is a wealthy woman whose business interests include a circus, jewel smuggling, and soon after meeting him, James Bond too (of course). Khan isn’t Bond’s only problem. His adversaries include a warmongering Russian (British stage veteran Steven Berkoff)) who is far more menacing than his Afghan ally–talk about strange bedfellows; Kabir Bedi as Khan’s Sikh henchman; and the usual assortment of unnamed goons whom Bond disposes of sooner or later.

Adapted from a pair of Fleming short stories (“Octopussy” and “The Property of a Lady”), Octopussy offers up an entertaining bonanza of action and humor. Though the finale, as much fun as it is, does stretch credibility a bit as several spry she warriors team up with Bond and the curmudgeonly gadget guru Q (Desmond Llewelyn). It’s nice to see him in the thick of things. One might wonder if the writers have ever thought of bringing back Felix Leiter. It’s been a number of years since the CIA agent and 007 ally was last seen onscreen in Moore’s first Bond adventure, Live and Let Die (1973). In addition to Lucas’ space saga and the Superman sequel, Bond will be facing off this year against… James Bond. Sean Connery will soon be coming to theatres as 007, nearly a dozen years since he renewed his licence to kill and thrill in Diamonds are Forever.