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I have finished counting all our rankings, 17 participants have submitted their rankings and they’re all valid, so we’re good to go.
As per usual we start with our last place finish, at number 14, we have:
THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN
With three last places, five penultimate places and seven more bottom 4’s TMWTGG was bound to finish near the bottom.
Only two members seem to appreciate it more than others: TMWTGG’s best ratings were one 7th and one 8th spot.
In total TMWTGG collected 52 points.
But, I'm talking about the whole story, plot and Mary Goodnight (who's competent in the book turned bimbo and dumb in the film!)
But outside, or with an exception of Scaramanga character (who's better in the film), I think the rest of the book's much better than the film, even the locations, prefer Jamaica to Thailand or Hong Kong.
I also prefer the elegant Scaramanga of the film over the brutish one from the book. Still though, I think it’s a fairly okay read nonetheless.
Same here, except for one thing: I really like the film as well.
I don t know about that. I love both versions.
Does it make sense? It feels very unbelievable to me that Scaramanga hires Bond and even Leiter not realizing who they are. Scaramanga in the book is described like someone with a lot influence but isn't able to have workers around him whom he can trust and it almost seems like he has these business partners but noone else around him. Odd...
Nevertheless, I like the novel a lot: it is a very easy and quick read with a perfect beginning. The first chapter is my favourite opening of all the Fleming novels.
I ranked it as #11.
Me too, nothing to “admit”.
To play Devil's advocate, there is that underlying idea that Scaramanga is gay and has some sort of attraction to Bond. Admittedly it's still rather contrived, but arguably no more so than it was in the Goldfinger novel when the titular character randomly accepted Bond's offer to work for him.
I too see him as both reckless and somewhat infatuated with Bond.
The problem I have with the movie Scaramanga is that he suddenly had a giant power plant built on his little island. The film would have been so much better without him taking an interest in that. Just Bond vs. Scaramanga, nothing more. Or something closer to the book.
True, that Solex Agitator thing just didn't make sense to me, and turned things complicated and somewhat convoluted.
It could do without that either.
I really liked the plot in the book that it's more grounded, typical like Licence To Kill.
I really liked the grounded tone in the book more, the film had so many things that didn't make sense to me and a bit off (The third nipple thing, the AMC Hornet chase with JW Pepper, the car with a plane wing, the Solex Agitator).
I wished the film relied on the grounded ness of the book more, but still keeping the Scaramanga as he was in the film.
I agree. I suppose the scriptwriters wanted some sort of McGuffin to more effectively move the plot along, hence why the Solex is there. Perhaps another aspect of it is the idea that the stakes aren't exactly high in the novel, so by referencing the energy crisis at the time the film would in theory pack more of a punch in this regard. It's not strictly speaking necessary, however, and the film already had some interesting ideas they could have played around with. Doesn't help that Scaramanga himself seems to admit in the film that he has a limited knowledge of science and seems to be using it for his weird laser thingy.
TMWTGG is a weird film. The idea of an assassin obsessed with killing Bond had so much potential. I do hope they revisit the concept someday in a future film in some form.
I get what you mean. In an ideal world TMWTGG would have been adapted as more of a FRWL style cat and mouse story. Any McGuffins or Solexes would have been a plot device for Scaramanga to lure Bond to that final showdown where he'd finally kill 'the world's greatest spy'. Certainly all the ingredients were there for a great little Bond adventure - perhaps a bit more low key (although the early 70s Bond films pre TSWLM were more key anyway) but something much less flippant, comical and throwaway than what we got.
Going back to the novel, I suspect at that time something more faithful to the source material wasn't going to be put onto film (putting aside the brainwashing subplot etc.) There's some genuinely great stuff in there though. The part, for instance, where Bond confronts the dying Scaramanga and is shot with the poison bullet is one of the great Fleming passages for me. I'd love to at least see that put onto screen - Bond being ordered to kill the main villain, perhaps hesitating or failing to do so throughout the story, and finally he lets his guard down and is nearly killed for his hesitancy.
I blame Richard Maibaum for the Solex, he can’t do his trademark criticizing others for his ideas this time. I blame both Guy Hamilton and Tom Mackiewicz for making everything too silly in TMWTGG. Too many people who were working on the series too long without being fresh.
I hope we get TMWTGG's opening for the screen at some point (from what I understand we nearly did in SF). But it needs that build up ultimately, not just in screenwriting terms, but with the previous film, the actor (it's not an effective way of introducing a new Bond, for instance).
TMWTGG I had ranked penultimately, ahead of DAF because it still gripped my attention more. It’s a fine book, but obviously Fleming’s done lots better. The swamp climax and knighthood refusal are the bits I liked / remembered best.
These guys had been in the game for far too long. Another problem was that David Picker clearly didn't want another OHMSS. One thing is for sure, the "comedic" trilogy of DAF, LALD, TMWTGG is the very opposite of OHMSS. One wonders how TMWTGG would have been adapted if OHMSS had been a big hit and set a whole new template.