Bond…James Bond on Netflix and Amazon Prime

There is plenty of Bondage on Netflix and Amazon Prime (same titles on both services). Be aware that it only lasts until the end of the month.

Dr. No

Dr. No (1962) – Rated PG

“Sent to locate a colleague who’s vanished in Jamaica, debonair Agent 007 — in the first of the James Bond films — finds villainous scientist Dr. No plotting to derail the U.S. space program and take over the world.”

Goldfinger

Goldfinger (1964) – Rated PG

“The third installment in the 007 series — which racked up an Oscar for Best Sound Effects — finds überspy James Bond trying to thwart baddie Auric Goldfinger and his elaborate gambit to corner the gold market by contaminating Fort Knox.”

Thunderball (1965) – Rated PG

“With his sights set on a blackmail payday of global proportions, terrorist mastermind Emilio Largo hijacks two nuclear weapons — and only James Bond can stop him in this 007 classic featuring Oscar-winning special effects.”

You Only Live Twice (1967) – Rated PG

“After American and Soviet spaceships disappear, the two countries trade blame for the incidents — and as the nations edge toward war, James Bond is tasked with getting to the bottom of another international mystery.”

Live and Let Die (1973) – Rated PG

“Roger Moore debuts as suave secret agent James Bond, who’s sent to the United States to go after a master criminal scheming to take over the country by turning the populace into heroin junkies. Paul McCartney provides the Oscar-nominated title tune.”

The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) – Rated PG

“In this rousing 007 adventure, sly spy James Bond teams with a shapely Russian agent to foil a millionaire industrialist who plans to rule an underwater empire — by wiping out the surface world. Steel-toothed thug “Jaws” makes his first appearance.”

For Your Eyes Only (1981) – Rated PG

“This entry in the überpopular film franchise finds the indomitable James Bond tasked with recovering a top-secret device capable of directing ballistic missiles from nuclear submarines — before the Soviets get their hands on it.”

Octopussy (1983) – Rated PG

“Agent 007 springs into action after uncovering a terrorist plot hatched by a renegade Soviet general and an exiled Afghan prince to launch a nuclear attack — financed by the sale of Fabergé eggs — against NATO forces in Europe.”

A View to a Kill (1985) – Rated PG

Agent 007 races against the clock to stop a power-mad French industrialist who’s scheming to corner the world’s microchip supply by triggering a massive earthquake that would destroy California’s Silicon Valley — and kill millions.”

Licence to Kill (1989) – Rated PG-13

“This time it’s personal as James Bond — stripped of his license to kill — embarks on a one-man, unauthorized mission of vengeance when notorious Colombian drug lord Franz Sanchez leaves 007’s newly married friend for dead.”

Goldeneye (1995) – Rated PG-13

Pierce Brosnan takes his first turn as suave secret agent James Bond, who — with his sophisticated gadgets and signature Aston Martin — investigates the destruction of a Russian satellite weapons base with help from the massacre’s sole survivor.”

Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) – Rated PG-13

“Pierce Brosnan stars as suave action hero James Bond in this continuation of the 007 series, this time teaming the secret agent and a sexy Chinese superspy against a megalomaniacal media mogul bent on starting World War III to boost his ratings.”

The World is Not Enough (1999) – Rated PG-13

“Greed, revenge, world domination, high-tech terrorism: It’s all in a day’s work for cunning secret agent James Bond, who’s on a mission — and in a race against time — to protect a beautiful oil heiress from a notorious terrorist.”

There is also the original premiere of James Bond way back in 1954 in

Casino Royale (1954) – Not rated

Having gambled away a vast sum of his country’s funds, a diabolical Soviet spy tries to recoup his losses through a high-stakes game of baccarat, but secret agent James Bond enters the competition to foil him in this 1954 teleplay.”

This is only for curiosity value. Barry Nelson is Jimmy Bond and Peter Lorre is his nemesis.

When you are done with that massive marathon, watch the excellent documentary:

Everything or Nothing

Everything or Nothing (2012) – Not rated

“He’s the greatest secret agent in the world, but who are the men behind Agent 007? This engrossing documentary goes inside the James Bond legend to uncover how a series of spy stories became one of the most iconic franchises in cinema history.”

 

 

The Rest of the Bonds

While instant Netflix is a goldmine if you like Connery or Moore as Bond, you are completely out of luck if you prefer Daniel Craig or Pierce Brosnan. Also missing is the screwball 60s comedy Casino Royale. Still there are a few more Bonds for me to cover.

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)

George Lazenby takes over the role of Agent 007 for what many consider to be the finest Bond film ever made. Bond tracks archnemesis Ernst Blofeld (Telly Savalas) to a mountaintop retreat where he’s training an army of beautiful but lethal women. Along the way, Bond falls for Italian contessa Tracy Draco (Diana Rigg) — and marries her in order to get closer to Blofeld. Meanwhile, he locates Blofeld in the Alps and embarks on a classic ski chase.

This one is better than many give it credit. Unfortunately what sinks it is the casting. George Lazenby is a cipher as Bond and shows little charisma and Telly Savalas makes the worst of the Blofelds. Diana Rigg is quite good as Tracy Draco and is thankfully treated as more than the arm candy that some of the Bond girls end up as.

The Living Daylights (1987) – Rated PG

Timothy Dalton makes his suave and lethal debut as superagent James Bond in this turbo-charged action-adventure. This time, Bond’s charged with protecting a Soviet general (Jeroen Krabbe) from a beautiful sniper (Maryam d’Abo). But after being used as a pawn in a fake defector scheme, Agent 007 must trek across the world to find the escaped general and stop a terrifying weapons conspiracy that may be linked to the Soviet military high command.

Licence to Kill (1989) – Rated PG-13

James Bond (Timothy Dalton) resigns from the Secret Service after a friend in the CIA (along with his new wife) is brutally murdered by drug lord Franz Sanchez (Robert Davi). With a score to settle, Bond partners up with pilot Pam Bouvier (Carey Lowell) and Sanchez’s mistress (Talisa Soto). While avoiding the British government, Bond races across land, air and water in a whirlwind of action and suspense.

Timothy Dalton was not bad as Bond. He jettisoned the tongue-in-cheek approach of Roger Moore to bring back some of the Bond toughness but I am afraid that he comes across as the successor to George Lazenby. They tried him a couple times and then rebooted with Pierce Brosnan.

Casino Royale (1954)

Having gambled away a vast sum of his country’s funds, a diabolical Soviet spy (Peter Lorre) tries to recoup his losses through a high-stakes game of baccarat, but secret agent James Bond (Barry Nelson) enters the competition to foil him in this 1954 teleplay. Intended as a pilot for a weekly TV series that never materialized, this first screen adaptation of a James Bond novel finds 007 portrayed as an American.

Casino Royale (1954 – not the 1967 comedy or the 2006 reboot) is quite an oddity. It showcases many of the limitations of 1950s television. I’ve always enjoyed Peter Lorre from his scary debut as the serial killer in “M” up through his humorous AIP turns in The Raven and Comedy of Terrors (both 1963) but this is not one of his best roles.

There is not much to recommend this film except as the first appearance of James Bond and that it is less than an hour long. Still if you are curious, instant Netflix offers it up.