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Having said that though, I always feel like I'm missing something with Thunderball because it gets a ton of love but I can't seem to quite see it. I always watch it with an open mind, thinking about what makes it so special for people but I'm always left feeling underwhelmed.
Me too. And I get the same feeling from NSNA... although TB is the better film.
YOLT? I love bits of it. A set piece here, a line of dialogue there, Barry's score always. But it's a totally daft film.
I must agree that YOLT is daft... but growing up in the Sixties with Batman on TV makes it look rather serious....
The Wedding is one of my favourite tracks in the whole franchise.
NSNA is another one I have to give another shot soon!
THUNDERBALL has gone down my estimation. It just feels like wheel spinning. This goes for both the book and the film, ESPECIALLY the book. There are Ken Adam sets but it’s all too brief because we quickly move to location shooting in the Bahamas. The set pieces aren’t exciting. The climax is ruined by overuse of blue screen and speeding up the film footage (an old editing method I’m glad Hollywood abandoned by the 70s).
Both films were and will always be lower in my rankings than the other 60s Bond films. They belong to the last third of my ranking for sure.
Oh yes, completely daft, but I too slightly prefer it over TB. Less weird editing, better theme song, fantastic cinematography and some real standout scenes that just click with me. It is also just more fun.
TB boasts the best collection of Bond women, a very solid villain and Connery has never been better. This movie oozes class like no other and its soundtrack is one of Barry’s best.
YOLT, despite having a visibly uninterested Connery, is a visual and aural feast of the highest order, runs at a brisk pace and has the awesome Donald P. and his man-eating piranhas.
I give a slight edge to YOLT as it’s one of the very few Bond movies (along with DN and GF) that I can watch at any given time and never get tired of it.
This is interesting! I've never met anyone who saw NSNA before TB! I've always felt that NSNA is 'badly traced copy' of TB, but somewhere in your mind that must somehow be reversed, eh?
Did you like it? I don't remember GFIII being that bad.... but then I only saw it once.
I also watched NSNA well before Thunderball actually. I watched NSNA as a kid and somehow it wasn’t until the last 5 years that I actually got around to watching Thunderball which was the only Bond film I had left unwatched. It was always the favorite of one of my close childhood friends with a shared appreciation for Bond which probably added to my disappointment when I finally got around to seeing it since I built my expectations too high haha. Fortunately I’ve come around on it on repeat viewings.
It didn’t really interest me in checking out other Bond films. I’d try to watch it again when it was on HBO more times just so maybe I’d get the hype better. Not really.
Contrast that with 6 years later when I rent a copy of TB and think it’s so utterly cool that I WANTED to be as cool as the 34 year old Sean Connery in his prime.
Not so much for the 52 year old Connery, who reminded me of a grandpa that somehow escaped his retirement home.
Spectacular in a sense now forgotten. The Mix done right…. throughout its considerable but effortlessly sustained length, You Only Live Twice teeters constantly on the brink of excess and inanity- and never once crosses that elusive line. Magnificent.
Barry’s score, Freddie Young’s cinematography, and the whole “Bond in Japan” vibe elevate the film for me.
Perfectly put. I totally agree. That elusive line would be crossed later in the Seventies....
YOLT was nicely acted by Connery IMO. Later in DAF he went wild. Like he was in a Flint movie. Enjoyable, but so different from the Bond he & EON created.
You Only Live Twice - 6/10
I'd give them both a 7.5 of 10.
Oh I far prefer TB to NSNA. It didn’t leave too much of an impression on me even as a kid, and totally paled in comparison when I revisited it shortly after watching Thunderball.
I still like YOLT very much, but it's a clear choice for weakest of the golden age 60s run if you ask me, most importantly because of Connery's more disengaged performance. Both TB and YOLT have great title songs, great locations, and great action for sure. They're both wonderful adventures. I just think TB has it outclassed in most areas.
That was the case for me as well. Saw NSNA in the cinema when it was released, and saw TB in a theatrical rerun three years later.