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Granted that Tracy clearly has problems at the start of Majesty's, but after the suicide attempt at the beginning she displays no real signs of psychological problems, or mental issues. Not saying that they're not there. But if you look at the film after Bond rescues her, other than a tantrum at Draco's birthday party, she's pretty much a happy Bond girl. The romance she builds with Bond, seeking him out in Piz Gloria, agreeing to marry Bond. If this is a woman with severe mental issues, then she hides it well.
Maybe OHMSS isn't so good after all.
The solution, as I recall, was:
"What she needs is a man to dominate her. To make love to her enough to make her love him."
Even a man with such prowess in the sexual arena as Bond could only offer a temporary solution to her ills, I would suspect.
I attribute any positive change in Tracy largely to Bond's intervention on her behalf. At the start of the movie Tracy thought only of death and escape. After Bond came along, she found sanctuary and security in a man that actually loved her for her. A man who had no interest in her wealth or future inheritance, and wasn't put off by her flaws, in any form they were expressed, because she accepted all his baggage as well, without judgement.
There's a word for that I heard once... Oh, right. It's called love. :)
I don't doubt that he loved her...but not until the end of the film.
it's why I have always questioned whether Bond truly loves Tracy or whether it's guilt, based on her emotional state and her dad's help in rescuing Tracy.
My wife and I always disagree about that. She's an old romantic who is desperate to think they truly love one another.
I concur with @OBrady. Don't forget that after Bond rescues her she still puts her life, or at least her reputation on the line in the casino. Then when Bond saves her again, she calls it an expensive evening. But at the same time she starts to get interested, promising to pay back in full. If she could do that, she had the money in the first place, not having to risk a scene in the casino.
I always put it down to 'Daddy' putting the money up to pay back Bond. I don't know why. Maybe the spoilt brat persona that she is given. And Draco's 'spare the rod and spoil the child. ' Line later in the film.
It's truly a tough one this.
I do like the 'love' story in this film, and both Lazenby and Rigg help sell it. Though as has been mentioned. Did Bond bed the women in Piz Gloria simply because that's what the audience expects Bond to do in that situation.
After all the trouble Satchmo went to, to give us 'We have all the time in the world' and a nice little sequence showing Bond and Tracy falling for each other. But it's not till after Tracy comes back into his life he just goes, 'You know what. This girl's the one for me. Sure she's a little messed up. But she'll be alright. If I make love to her enough, she'll love me. Enough for me to dominate her.' And asks her to marry him.
I do like the thoughts that @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 mentions about A man who had no interest in her wealth or future inheritance, and wasn't put off by her flaws, in any form they were expressed, because she accepted all his baggage as well, without judgement.
It would've been better had Bond not shagged his way around The Angels Of Death for no reason other than to get a bit.
With regard to emotional engagement, however, I think that the John Glen films on average did a really good job. For me personally, the degree of emotional engagement depends on how Bond reacts to the death of another person (especially with regard to friends, allies or lovers) and the way he interacts with the women and his allies and friends.
For instance Dr. No is a great film but I find hardly any emotional depth in the relationship between Bond and both, Quarrel and Honey Rider. Actually Connery and early Moore cared more for themselves and the mission, whatever it may mean for their allies or love interests.
Bond seems to care more about his allies and Bond girls only after FYEO and I like the later Moore films for these elements. In AVTAK, Bond finally seems to be disgusted by any death. He even tries to convince Mayday to not commit suicide.
With regard to love stories I also think that Casino Royal, OHMSS as well as TLD and Octopussy showed the most emotional and deepest relationships. Skyfall has a great emotional relationship between Bond and M, too. I still think, however, that the love story in OHMSS is a bit forced and less credible since Bond seem to have no problem in bedding half of Piz Gloria while he is actually in a relationship with Tracy.
I personally think that LTK and QoS lack on the emotional depth by only focusing on revenge. For me these films are a bit too one-dimensional. The urge for revenge is also an emotion but I just 't really find the character development neither very likeable nor very plausible.
There can be triggers to what causes depressions, often manifesting in the individual as feelings of loneliness and low self-worth, and a sense that nothing will ever go right. Bond coming along and saving her life both figuratively and literally, being her partner and enjoying her company for only who she is at her core sans more material pursuits shows Tracy that maybe she isn't alone in the world and that there is someone out there who understands and accepts her.
These discussions alone exemplify why OHMSS is special in the Bond canon, as like true romances, both players in this game of love, their motives and reasons for chasing one another can be interpreted in many different ways, which creates many different viewpoints on the narrative as a whole.
OHMSS and Tracy as a vital part of it capped off the 60s era of films wonderfully, as up until that point Bond was unattached, romanced and left all his past Bond girls behind for another adventure and another set of dames. Then along comes a woman of interest beyond the sexual that fascinates him and engages him, connecting with some of the sympathy and humanity underneath his hard exterior as he witnesses her plight. Then and there the game changes, and he doesn't want to run any longer.
Tracy is the quintessential example of the wounded bird archetype that Fleming said he'd write along Bond's path. No matter how hard he may try to avoid it, broken women land along Bond's path and each time he feels an intense, indescribable need to mount a rescue, come to their aid and make them fly again. More often than not, however, he patches them up to give them renewed flight just seconds before they're shot out of the air and sent careening to the ground all over again, but fatally this time, and all Bond can do is watch.
Why OHMSS works as a story, romance or otherwise, is because it stays true to Bond's cruel world and who he is ultimately as a character of immense tragedy. The universe pays him no respect or good-will, and every time he tries to make a change for his own betterment, it all comes undone and he's back where he began, on his own in a world that has no time for his happiness. No matter how many times he experiences love, loss or pyrrhic victory (there is no other kind for him), in the end it's always him facing the world forlorn, with blood dripping from his hands after another failed attempt to seize a greater, more meaningful future for himself.
Tragedies are seldom so hauntingly beautiful and sorrowful in the same breath.
However, if what she has is a clinical 'mental illness' as argued earlier, as opposed to only loneliness, then the prescription which the film proposes (either dominant sex or love, especially with a man like Bond and with his career) can only be a partial solution in my view, and could even by highly risky as it creates another dependency.
I would think that suicidal depression is too serious to solve in this manner. However, we are talking about the 60's and medicine has come a long way since then. Moreover, it's just a film (in the thriller genre), and so we have to accept that it's not going to be realistic.
I actually think Draco's prescription was entirely right (albeit expressed in an old fashioned way). The modern prescription would be to ply her with anti depressants, but this isn't a long term fix to her core unhappiness, which is loneliness & lack of direction in her life.
Depression is caused by underlying problems in someone's life.
I prefer to distinguish this from mental illness which in my opinion is very often a result of drug use.
Bond's bedding of other women doesn't really tell us that much about where his heart lies. I met many man incapable of staying true to their partner, even though they loved them very much. Often resulting in tears, of course. But it's moral judgement to conclude that he doesn't love Tracy at that point. All in all, as has been stated, he's on a mission too and trying to find out why those girls are there in the first place. What Blofeld's up to.
Even more so, Bond is the steriotype lone wolf hunter, in which one could assess that his womanizing is part of his persona. He needs it to establish himself as himself.
On her perceived illness:
As @bondjames says, it was the sixties and little was known about mental illnesses. So whatever odd behaviour one could have, it would be 'cured' by conforming to the (puritan) standards of society. We now may know it doesn't work like that, nut at the same time people do feel better when they have a purpose in life, something Tracy was obviously missing.
When Bond and she meet at the icerink she tells him he's got a new interest. He asks 'wintersportsmen' whereupon she replies 'just one wintersportsman'. This illustrates to me they both didn't as yet consider their relationship to be full. So here's a purpose in life AND the 'strong dominating man solves all' solution.
Lets face it, Fleming was always escapist literature not intended to be taken completely seriously. There's pretences of depth throughout the novels, but I'm not entirely convinced certain scenerio's would play out the same way in real life.
Bond's alcoholism and recklessness in the aftermath of Tracey's death in YOLT for instance would be a far greater issue for the secret service than it seems to be in the book. Fleming almost says the worst thing you can about a grieving person (that Bond needs something to snap him out of it).
And many never touched drugs in the first place but got their illness through genetics or traumatic experiences or both.
Thanks, but I used to work in this field and read patients background files. Drug use (particularly cannabis) is a major factor & it has yet to be fully confronted by psychiatry. Not a topic to be discussed on here I feel however.
Even if it was 'only' 30%, that means it is major factor btw. And yet cannabis is practically decriminalised.
Fair enough, was just triggered by the 'very often'. Must agree that 30% still falls into that catagory, but it feels differently. Suppose that's what happens when you've seen mental illnesses up close a bit too often. But indeed, let's not discuss this here any further.
Bond had saved her twice for no reason other than compassion. This person has entered her life who really seems to care for her. Behind her business like façade she has feelings for him because of what he's done for her. And then at the bull fighting she thinks it was all just a business transaction after all and runs off. Bond realises at that moment that he really does care about her.
And they do the soft focus stuff, gaze adoringly into each others eyes, buy the engagement ring, and then Bond goes off and screws a bunch of girls whilst under deep cover. Hmm.
He bumps into Tracy after escaping, but if he hadn't, what then? No cow barn to cement their love. Would he have felt the same if he had escaped himself and gone back to her?