Why isn't your "go-to" Bond film your favorite Bond film?

ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
in Bond Movies Posts: 1,345
(This is my first new thread--hope it's a good topic)

Bond fandom appears to have a unique phenomenon: people having "favorite" films and "go-to" films. It's not uncommon to see someone write that their favorite Bond film is FRWL, or OHMSS, or CR, but then say that their "go-to" film, the one they watch most often, is Octopussy, or Tomorrow Never Dies. It's just not that unusual to see someone say Goldfinger is their favorite, most untouchable Bond film, but then say they watch A View to a Kill every three weeks.

One doesn't see this so much in other fan communities. You don't read "Empire is my favorite Star Wars film, but I watch Revenge of the Sith more than any of them". People usually watch the ones they like the most. What's different with Bond fans?

My favorite Bond is probably Licence to Kill, and if I hadn't completely memorized the entire movie, it would also be my go-to film, so on some level, I find it weird. But on the other hand, if I'm honest with myself, I watch DAF more often than GF probably because I like DAF more than GF, but when I try to rank the films, it just feels too wrong to put the campy fat Bond flick above the universally-loved classic. So I don't.

So my question is, if your "go-to" Bond is not your favorite Bond, why not? What could your go-to Bond do better to make it your favorite? Is it possible that your actual favorite Bond film isn't the one you want it to be? I'm strangely fascinated by this, so if this applies to you, I'd love to hear about why you classify the films this way.



«1

Comments

  • edited April 2019 Posts: 16,154
    Interesting thread/topic!
    I've never given this any thought before actually, but it's a current thing for me now, as I'm in the middle of a Bondathon. What's different with this Bondathon is that I'm basing my ranking on entertainment factor more than anything else. That makes for an interesting ranking, with DAF safely within top ten. DAF is one of my go-to films, but it's never been this high in my personal ranking before. It falls down on the OTT campness of the film, and the fact that it's a lesser film in many ways. But it's so damn fun!

    I guess we overanalyse the films from time to time, weighing every weakness of each films up against the rest. The sum of these "weaknesses" will affect how we view the films and rank them. This might be the wrong way to approach watching them, as the go-to films should probably get more recognition.

    Might come back with more thoughts on this!

    Edit: I do have one exception though; TB is one of my go-to films, and it's been in my top three since I watched it the first time.
  • JeremyBondonJeremyBondon Seeking out odd jobs with Oddjob @Tangier
    Posts: 1,116
    I reckon this phenomenon isn't exclusive to Bond, per se. For example I rank a few films in my top tier, but those aren't necessarily my go to films I tend to watch a lot.

    As for Bond, TLD is most likely my go to film I can always watch and relax, but it happens to be my favorite alongside GF, which I watch a lot less, but when I do love it to bits. /2 cents
  • mattjoesmattjoes The page you were looking for could not be found.
    edited April 2019 Posts: 5,532
    This is the perennial "favorite vs. best" debate, which applies not only to Bond films, but to any film, and in fact probably to any artwork in any artform. I've come across this question several times, and every time, I have found my thoughts on the matter have evolved.

    Some people make a difference between the two concepts, choosing a film as the best because it meets certain criteria which appear to edge closer to what might be referred to as objectivity-- namely, a coherent and well-structured story, vivid characters who undergo arcs, and a consistency between the different aspects of a film, with script, cinematography, editing, music, etc., all seeming to aim in a similar direction and toward a similar goal.

    On the other hand, these people choose favorites only in terms of enjoyment and a visceral reaction to the film, disregarding the previously mentioned criteria.

    I understand why the difference is made. The criteria for a film to be chosen as best appear to be more divorced from personal whims and preferences, while films picked as favorites can be chosen as such purely on the basis of things like "I like action films but not dramas" or "I hate Woody Allen", things which are informed by personal experiences which vary from individual to individual.

    Without being certain of whether to make this difference is right or wrong (or rather, useful or useless), I'll say that in my case, I don't think much about favorite vs. best, simply because in my opinion, in the case of art, everything we think and feel, whether seemingly objective or not, is colored by our personal experiences, so even coherent and well-structured stories, vivid characters and consistency are, in essence, things which we evaluate based on concepts related to tastes, concepts that are similar to "I like action films but not dramas", only dealing with preferences of how to build stories and characters, rather than the seemingly more whimsical preferences of genre, actors, filmmakers, etc.

    I will also point out that I take this loose view regarding art because, even at its most "objective", art cannot equal the objectivity found in, say, science. This isn't physics. We are talking about a man-made construct here, one which clearly serves a purpose and "fills a void", but whose definition (and yes, its purpose) not agreed upon in entirety. It's hard (impossible?) to decide if something is good if we can't agree what it needs to be good at. And going back to what I was talking about in the earlier paragraph, even if the entire world agreed on what art has to be good at, you would find everybody had a different opinion or feeling on whether any given piece of art was good at it.

    This kind of question is related to aesthetics, which is a part of philosophy. I admit I'm not well-versed at it (my philosophical knowledge is stronger in other areas, really), so these thoughts are the thoughts of a "layman." Someone more familiar with aesthetics might have something interesting to say.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 17,281
    My favourite Bonds require a special time to be watched. My 'go-to' Bonds are purely for fun, and can be paused without irritation as phone calls or spousal requests make necessary. DO NOT make me pause TLD or LTK. Pause TND? Okay, but it better be a good reason. YOLT or DAF? Okay. QOS? Chances of that are slim since it's so short... ;)
  • Posts: 12,700
    My go to used to be my favourite, LTK, but then over the years I started watching my favourites less and less because I realised how much more special they felt with rarer viewings. So then my go to Bond films, if I wanted to watch one but wasn't in the mood for any one in particular, gradually became what I saw as fun but disposable ones. I can't think of a particular go to one though because I did try and make sure when I was watching one that it wasn't one I'd seen recently. It'd usually be a Moore or a Brosnan, or a late Connery. Something fun and easy to get into.

    Now though? I barely watch any of them at all. Bond used to be my default viewing if I had time to kill, couldn't be bothered to do anything and wanted something to watch. But when I realised how much more engaged I was watching my favourites after I limited my viewings of them, I decided to do the same for the whole series. So now when I have a day off or my wife's out and I find myself just lounging around watching telly I make a conscious effort not to watch a Bond film. Might think about reaching for the blu ray boxset but then I think nah, and I watch or do literally anything else instead.

    So I don't really have a go to anymore personally. I just don't watch them often enough for that anymore. Think I will be due a marathon in the run up to Bond 25 though.
  • NS_writingsNS_writings Buenos Aires
    Posts: 544
    My favourite Bond film is GoldenEye.
    And I think the best Bond film is... GoldenEye!
  • MinionMinion Don't Hassle the Bond
    Posts: 1,165
    Octopussy is the most rewatchable Bond film for me. I stinkin' love it!
  • w2bondw2bond is indeed a very rare breed
    Posts: 2,241
    The 'best' Bond film might be like a fine wine. Good on occasion and small portions but too much of it will dilute and diminish the experience. I hear that a lot for From Russia with Love (ie best film but not watched as much as others, and a minority even rank it lower for this reason).

    The 'go-to' film might be one that is highly entertaining and rewatchable, and great to relax with, like a daily go-to drink like beer. And it is a great beer, but not in the same league as a premium wine or whisky. I would say Goldfinger fits in this category

    I've found rankings tend to be a reflection of both of these thought processes, a mix of the film's quality or perceived quality, personal enjoyment, nostalgia. So while a lot of people rank films as expected there's a lot of curveball rankings especially now that we've got at least 24 films
  • Posts: 14,031
    A few of my go-to films like OP remain in my top 10 ( as does it's nemesis NSNA). I may have done a ranking several months ago in which my go to films were are the top. just to see how the others fit.

    Both Tim films I'd say are among my go-to's, as are DAF, AVTAK, and the always reliable MR.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 17,281
    OP is SO go-to! GF level go-to.
  • NS_writingsNS_writings Buenos Aires
    edited April 2019 Posts: 544
    Minion wrote: »
    Octopussy is the most rewatchable Bond film for me. I stinkin' love it!

    SPECTRE is the most rewatchable of the Craig ones to me. 11 times on the big screen, not bored a single time. Having said that, CR is by far the one with better quality overall but it's hard to rewatch. Also, I find Skyfall incredibly slow. QOS is a bit more rewatchable than these two because it's short.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    edited April 2019 Posts: 17,281
    Minion wrote: »
    Octopussy is the most rewatchable Bond film for me. I stinkin' love it!

    SPECTRE is the most rewatchable of the Craig ones to me. 11 times on the big screen, not bored a single time.

    I concur! In my 'pauseable' sense. Just fun. But QOS is the most watchable in the quick-watch sense...
  • Posts: 19,339
    Great topic @ProfJoeButcher but you spelt ‘favourite ‘ wrong in your titles .
    OP is my favourite film,lots of personal reasons why, my go-to film is probably either DAD or QOS.
    The ‘best’ Bond film is always a 3-way battle between FRWL,OHMSS & CR.
  • QBranchQBranch Always have an escape plan. Mine is watching James Bond films.
    Posts: 12,272
    barryt007 wrote: »
    Great topic @ProfJoeButcher but you spelt ‘favourite ‘ wrong in your titles
    It's the American spelling. Professor Joe's from Isthmus City.

    Best film: no definitive answer here, but FRWL, TLD and CR are in my Top 5
    Favourite: FRWL, TB, TSWLM, CR
    Go to film: TB, LALD
    Most rewatchable: TB, QOS
  • Posts: 19,339
    QBranch wrote: »
    barryt007 wrote: »
    Great topic @ProfJoeButcher but you spelt ‘favourite ‘ wrong in your titles
    It's the American spelling. Professor Joe's from Isthmus City.

    Best film: no definitive answer here, but FRWL, TLD and CR are in my Top 5
    Favourite: FRWL, TB, TSWLM, CR
    Go to film: TB, LALD
    Most rewatchable: TB, QOS

    I know that Q , it’s why I keep a spare faucet in my trunk he he
  • QBranchQBranch Always have an escape plan. Mine is watching James Bond films.
    Posts: 12,272
    barryt007 wrote: »
    I know that Q , it’s why I keep a spare faucet in my trunk he he
    Baz, you'll be delighted to know that I could care less. ;)
  • Posts: 19,339
    QBranch wrote: »
    barryt007 wrote: »
    I know that Q , it’s why I keep a spare faucet in my trunk he he
    Baz, you'll be delighted to know that I could care less. ;)

    Bravo you clever armourer
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,345
    chrisisall wrote: »
    My favourite Bonds require a special time to be watched. My 'go-to' Bonds are purely for fun, and can be paused without irritation as phone calls or spousal requests make necessary. DO NOT make me pause TLD or LTK. Pause TND? Okay, but it better be a good reason. YOLT or DAF? Okay. QOS? Chances of that are slim since it's so short... ;)

    This is a good point. I think it's fair to say that certain Bond films do not require one's constant attention!
    barryt007 wrote: »
    QBranch wrote: »
    barryt007 wrote: »
    I know that Q , it’s why I keep a spare faucet in my trunk he he
    Baz, you'll be delighted to know that I could care less. ;)

    Bravo you clever armourer

    I'm delighted to be able to inform you that you are getting counselling from Sir Roger, and not "councilling". While this is a common mistake, in no form of English is "council" a verb, and of course the gerund form follows suit. :-)
  • Posts: 19,339
    chrisisall wrote: »
    My favourite Bonds require a special time to be watched. My 'go-to' Bonds are purely for fun, and can be paused without irritation as phone calls or spousal requests make necessary. DO NOT make me pause TLD or LTK. Pause TND? Okay, but it better be a good reason. YOLT or DAF? Okay. QOS? Chances of that are slim since it's so short... ;)

    This is a good point. I think it's fair to say that certain Bond films do not require one's constant attention!
    barryt007 wrote: »
    QBranch wrote: »
    barryt007 wrote: »
    I know that Q , it’s why I keep a spare faucet in my trunk he he
    Baz, you'll be delighted to know that I could care less. ;)

    Bravo you clever armourer

    I'm delighted to be able to inform you that you are getting counselling from Sir Roger, and not "councilling". While this is a common mistake, in no form of English is "council" a verb, and of course the gerund form follows suit. :-)

    Haha you are right x touché x well played !!!
  • pachazopachazo Make Your Choice
    edited April 2019 Posts: 7,271
    I like what some of you are saying about being objective when watching the films. No matter what criteria you're basing it on it's still filtered through our own thoughts and opinions.

    Anyway, I believe CR is Craig's best film, but I actually watch QoS (and probably SF) more, but let's just stick to CR and QoS. Watching CR is an emotional investment and can take a toll on you. Plus, the ending does tend to drag a little. Watching QoS (which I also love) is a breeze in comparison. Not that Quantum doesn't have any emotional resonance. It's just shorter and easier to sit through, hence a go-to movie.
  • BennyBenny Classified Administrator, Moderator
    Posts: 12,662
    Minion wrote: »
    Octopussy is the most rewatchable Bond film for me. I stinkin' love it!
    chrisisall wrote: »
    OP is SO go-to! GF level go-to.
    ToTheRight wrote: »
    A few of my go-to films like OP remain in my top 10 ( as does it's nemesis NSNA). I may have done a ranking several months ago in which my go to films were are the top. just to see how the others fit.

    Both Tim films I'd say are among my go-to's, as are DAF, AVTAK, and the always reliable MR.

    I'm trying to find notes in my wallet to send you all.
    OP is for me a rewatchable Bond film for any occasion. Certainly a cheer me up when needed film.
    Whereas DN, FRWL or OHMSS need my full attention
  • QQ7QQ7 Croatia
    Posts: 371
    Ok lets try this:

    My favorite: TSWLM
    Go to: Dr. No
    Objectively best: TB, OHMSS, CR
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,345
    Benny wrote: »
    Minion wrote: »
    Octopussy is the most rewatchable Bond film for me. I stinkin' love it!
    chrisisall wrote: »
    OP is SO go-to! GF level go-to.
    ToTheRight wrote: »
    A few of my go-to films like OP remain in my top 10 ( as does it's nemesis NSNA). I may have done a ranking several months ago in which my go to films were are the top. just to see how the others fit.

    Both Tim films I'd say are among my go-to's, as are DAF, AVTAK, and the always reliable MR.

    I'm trying to find notes in my wallet to send you all.
    OP is for me a rewatchable Bond film for any occasion. Certainly a cheer me up when needed film.
    Whereas DN, FRWL or OHMSS need my full attention

    Octopussy is the film I most had in mind when thinking about this topic. It's rare to see it in someone's top five, but I wouldn't be shocked if somehow God told me OP is actually the most-watched Bond film of all time. (Well I'd be shocked that there was a God and he was talking to me about Bond films, but that's a more philosophical discussion)

  • Posts: 13,790

    I'd make a distinction between best (FRWL), favourite (TB) and go-to (a handful of them, going from great to mediocre). For best and favourite, I need a special moment, plenty of time and a specific frame of mind. For me TB is something I watch either during summertime or when I start longing for summertime. FRWL I watch when I'm in the mood for something typically Bond, but then that goes beyond the genre and the tropes associated to the character. The go-to Bond films have generally a B movie charm to them.
  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,661
    My 'go to' Bond films seem to be Moonraker, The Living Daylights and Quantum of Solace, at the moment.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,345
    Hmm. In the three years since I started this little thread, the distinction between my "go-to" Bonds and my favorite Bonds has vanished completely...!

    Perversely, I do watch some of my least favorites surprisingly often, hoping they'll click with me. (Still can't figure out why I can't get into TSWLM)
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 37,062
    This thread really makes me want to do a Bondathon where I try to rank them exclusively via rewatch factor. I know bias would inevitably set in and I'd feel "wrong" ranking certain classics so low but it'd be quite revealing.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,345
    Creasy47 wrote: »
    This thread really makes me want to do a Bondathon where I try to rank them exclusively via rewatch factor. I know bias would inevitably set in and I'd feel "wrong" ranking certain classics so low but it'd be quite revealing.

    Admitting to myself that I like DAF more than DN was hilariously difficult.
  • Posts: 11,204
    This is a good thread idea. It made me realize I don't really have a go-to Bond film. Most times I've watched them lately have been in full marathons, and whenever I just want a solo Bond film, I can choose just about any one of them depending on my mood. I think they're almost all very rewatchable; my least favorites (SP, DAF, DAD, TWINE) are the ones I'm least likely to put on outside marathons.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 37,062
    Creasy47 wrote: »
    This thread really makes me want to do a Bondathon where I try to rank them exclusively via rewatch factor. I know bias would inevitably set in and I'd feel "wrong" ranking certain classics so low but it'd be quite revealing.

    Admitting to myself that I like DAF more than DN was hilariously difficult.

    For me, it's AVTAK and a host of other films.

    As for the topic, my go-to is QoS these days, but it's my second behind GE. I think it's such an easy rewatch for me because I not only really love it but it's wonderfully paced at a great, shorter runtime. It just flies by.
Sign In or Register to comment.