Cinematic Bond: which movies would you consider 'deadly serious'?

chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
edited July 11 in Bond Movies Posts: 17,281
Deadly serious as in Fleming's novels, or reasonably close to them.
Humour is a thing with Bond, but some of the films had sort of a day with it.
Winking pigeon on one end of the spectrum, winking fish water sculpture on the other end....
Thoughts?
«1345

Comments

  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    edited July 11 Posts: 21,079
    I'd say that DN, CR, QOS, SF, SP and NTTD are about as serious as they come.

    While FRWL, OHMSS, FYEO, TLD, LTK and GE are often credited with being more hard-boiled and less comedy-driven, I'd say they all have various moments of strategically positioned humour that contradict the "deadly serious" thesis, some in a more balanced way (OHMSS) than others (LTK).

    Craig's Bonds evidently have little comedy, if any, apart from a good line and maybe a smile-provoking kick or two. They also attempt fairly grounded-in-reality narratives, heavy-handed or not, thereby avoiding the more fantastical or "anything goes" approaches of the likes of GF, TB, YOLT, DAF, LALD, TSWLM, MR, ...

    DN is the one deadly serious Bond film people often forget to mention in my experience. But think about it. Bond goes pretty hardcore when he kills a man up close. (Dent?) There's the bleak suicide of Mr Jones and the brutal assassination of Strangways and his secretary. The story is overall pretty gritty and realistic (apart from the assumption that the spider is lethal). Quarell's superstition is met with a cold doom and the "missing scenes" between dinner and Honey's near-drowning experience induce horrific fears of abuse in some way. DN is exotic and low-key, and I think this may be why it's rarely seen as a serious Bond film. But if that script were re-filmed today with a few minor tweaks here or there, I'd say you could turn it into a hard thriller.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    edited July 11 Posts: 17,281
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    I'd say that DN, CR, QOS, SF, SP and NTTD are about as serious as they come.

    While FRWL, OHMSS, FYEO, TLD, LTK and GE are often credited with being more hard-boiled and less comedy-driven, I'd say they all have various moments of strategically positioned humour that contradict the "deadly serious" thesis, some in a more balanced way (OHMSS) than others (LTK).

    Craig's Bonds evidently have little comedy, if any, apart from a good line and maybe a smile-provoking kick or two. They also attempt fairly grounded-in-reality narratives, heavy-handed or not, thereby avoiding the more fantastical or "anything goes" approaches of the likes of GF, TB, YOLT, DAF, LALD, TSWLM, MR, ...

    DN is the one deadly serious Bond film people often forget to mention in my experience. But think about it. Bond goes pretty hardcore when he kills a man up close. (Dent?) There's the bleak suicide of Mr Jones and the brutal assassination of Strangways and his secretary. The story is overall pretty gritty and realistic (apart from the assumption that the spider is lethal). Quarell's superstition is met with a cold doom and the "missing scenes" between dinner and Honey's near-drowning experience induce horrific fears of abuse in some way. DN is exotic and low-key, and I think this may be why it's rarely seen as a serious Bond film. But if that script were re-filmed today with a few minor tweaks here or there, I'd say you could turn it into a hard thriller.

    DN was pretty fierce. We didn't see take-no-prisoners s**t like that again until Craig.
    Still, LTK freaks me with its serious moments. It's the missing link between DN & CR in my opinion....
  • Posts: 17,703
    I would love to see re edited versions of the John Glen's films with all the absurd humor removed, as much as I like those films the tone was often uneven. The grittier aspects of JG's films are what make them good for me.

    DN, FRWL, CR and QoS are the most serious films overall IMO, arguably every film has its serious moments. Bond's interrogation of Miss Anders is pretty serious for example.

    I disqualify SF for really bad writing, as soon as Silva appears the film falls apart and is ludicrous. Admittedly along with SP its my lowest ranked film.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    edited July 11 Posts: 1,345
    Well, I don't view any of the films, or any of Fleming's novels, as being "deadly serious." But most of the movies do remind me of Fleming to some significant degree. The only ones that don't are probably YOLT, TSWLM, TWINE, and CR.

    Dr No has a dude with metal hands who lives in a luxurious underwater nuclear power plant where he topples rockets and shows off stolen paintings. Great, great movie, but certainly not deadly serious. FRWL introduces us to Blofeld and his ludicrous assassin training regime on SPECTRE Island, as well as a pretty hare-brained scheme to get back at super-agent James Bond. Great film, not serious. Both of these films were considered potentially satirical upon release, and certainly not deadly serious.

    OHMSS is about Blofeld trying to become a count by blackmailing the world with an army of brainwashed babes out to poison chickens.

    LTK certainly gravitates more toward the serious pole, but we're also having Bond doing wheelies with tanker trucks, and honestly, loved ones being killed/maimed does not a "deadly serious" film make. It's a standard trope in action films and that's all.

    CR, like LTK, leans into being a bit serious, but deadly serious films probably don't have contrived parkour chases or Scooby-Doo investigations where surveillance footage shows exactly what you need to find by dumb luck. And the villain's actions would also match his aims.

    QOS, I would say, is the most serious of the 25 films. Like the others, it doesn't portray things that would happen in real life (Elvis, Fields's death, the opera scene), but it's the closest to real life I can find in these films.

    NTTD features the line, "Q, hack into Blofeld's bionic eye."

    None of these observations are criticisms in the slightest. I love Fleming's world of women named West Berlin, voodoo masters stealing pirate treasure, giant squid battles, and Japanese gods blessing foreign agents through their living statues. I just don't see any of it as particularly serious.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 17,281
    Well, I don't view any of the films, or any of Fleming's novels, as being "deadly serious." But most of the movies do remind me of Fleming to some significant degree. The only ones that don't are probably YOLT, TSWLM, TWINE, and CR.

    Dr No has a dude with metal hands who lives in a luxurious underwater nuclear power plant where he topples rockets and shows off stolen paintings. Great, great movie, but certainly not deadly serious. FRWL introduces us to Blofeld and his ludicrous assassin training regime on SPECTRE Island, as well as a pretty hare-brained scheme to get back at super-agent James Bond. Great film, not serious. Both of these films were considered potentially satirical upon release, and certainly not deadly serious.

    OHMSS is about Blofeld trying to become a count by blackmailing the world with an army of brainwashed babes out to poison chickens.

    LTK certainly gravitates more toward the serious pole, but we're also having Bond doing wheelies with tanker trucks, and honestly, loved ones being killed/maimed does not a "deadly serious" film make. It's a standard trope in action films and that's all.

    CR, like LTK, leans into being a bit serious, but deadly serious films probably don't have contrived parkour chases or Scooby-Doo investigations where surveillance footage shows exactly what you need to find by dumb luck. And the villain's actions would also match his aims.

    QOS, I would say, is the most serious of the 25 films. Like the others, it doesn't portray things that would happen in real life (Elvis, Fields's death, the opera scene), but it's the closest to real life I can find in these films.

    NTTD features the line, "Q, hack into Blofeld's bionic eye."

    None of these observations are criticisms in the slightest. I love Fleming's world of women named West Berlin, voodoo masters stealing pirate treasure, giant squid battles, and Japanese gods blessing foreign agents through their living statues. I just don't see any of it as particularly serious.

    This is an excellent mini-article right here. I agree with every word.
  • Posts: 649
    Yeah, I wouldn't describe Fleming's novels as deadly serious. Perhaps CR is the closest to a straightforward Cold War thriller, but a Bond story is, by its nature, meant to be fantastical.

    If anything Fleming's skill was to depict those things - the villain with metal hands, voodoo, our hero battling giant squids etc. - in a way that felt grounded and believable. Bond genuinely gets hurt, the scenes are tense, often rather dark. Everything is simultaneously otherworldly and yet plausible. It's not something I've always seen done that well in the movies. The closest they got is perhaps DN for me.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    edited July 11 Posts: 1,345
    007HallY wrote: »
    If anything Fleming's skill was to depict those things - the villain with metal hands, voodoo, our hero battling giant squids etc. - in a way that felt grounded and believable. Bond genuinely gets hurt, the scenes are tense, often rather dark. Everything is simultaneously otherworldly and yet plausible. It's not something I've always seen done that well in the movies. The closest they got is perhaps DN for me.

    I think I agree with that. Yeah, the books aren't deadly serious, but Bond is a realistic character who grounds the fantastic world. And I love when the movies start with plausible events, but by the end of it everything is ridiculous and you wonder exactly how things escalated so much. :)) Dr No is brilliant in this way, and trigger warning: Spectre gushing one of the reasons I love Spectre so much is the way it starts out believably (apart from the heightened realism of the action), but eventually they pull up in a Rolls Royce at a crater base with sprinklers and palm trees in the middle of nowhere.

    Starting with the mundane (cheating at cards, sending microchips to the Soviet Union, investigating a guy called Sciarra) and ending with the bizarre (foiling a nuclear attack inside Fort Knox, fighting atop the Golden Gate Bridge, watching your childhood enemy drill holes in your brain) is my favorite Bond trope.

  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    edited July 11 Posts: 17,281

    Starting with the mundane (cheating at cards, sending microchips to the Soviet Union, investigating a guy called Sciarra) and ending with the bizarre (foiling a nuclear attack inside Fort Knox, fighting atop the Golden Gate Bridge, watching your childhood enemy drill holes in your brain) is my favorite Bond trope.

    Yes, mine too. Like beginning with investigating a drug smuggler to a full-on underground lair & a semi wheelie!
  • Posts: 1,209
    DN, FRWL, OHMSS, FYEO, LTK, CR 06, QOS, SF, SP, NTTD
    and, yes, in going through the films in my mind I did include considerations of CR 67 and NSNA. I gave a lot of thought to TND. It is not rooted in something very fantastic and implausible. Perhaps I should have included it.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    edited July 11 Posts: 1,345
    chrisisall wrote: »

    Starting with the mundane (cheating at cards, sending microchips to the Soviet Union, investigating a guy called Sciarra) and ending with the bizarre (foiling a nuclear attack inside Fort Knox, fighting atop the Golden Gate Bridge, watching your childhood enemy drill holes in your brain) is my favorite Bond trope.

    Yes, mine too. Like beginning with investigating a drug smuggler to a full-on underground lair & a semi wheelie!

    Haha, indeed. I guess I like it when the movies look like they could go in a deadly serious direction, and then they don't. :))
  • Posts: 644
    I would love to see re edited versions of the John Glen's films with all the absurd humor removed, as much as I like those films the tone was often uneven. The grittier aspects of JG's films are what make them good for me.

    I'd like that. I often wish I could overlook the silly bits like others can, but they just ruin the film's credibility for me. Octopussy is one of the worst offenders. It askes to care about Bond escaping the villains, and then has him swinging through the trees doing a Tarzan yell, (the absolute nadir of the series for me).
    Too often in the Moore era they ruined any tension with an infantile joke for cheap laughs.

    As to the original posters question, I think From Russia With Love is the most serious Bond film.
  • Posts: 11,204
    https://y.yarn.co/094dda6c-2997-4822-a3f7-08c191028a7e_text.gif

    Sorry, first thing I thought. Tonally, the most serious to me are DN, FRWL, OHMSS, FYEO, TLD, LTK, CR, QOS, and SF. NTTD has several of the most serious moments but also tons of levity, so maybe included.
  • Posts: 649
    007HallY wrote: »
    If anything Fleming's skill was to depict those things - the villain with metal hands, voodoo, our hero battling giant squids etc. - in a way that felt grounded and believable. Bond genuinely gets hurt, the scenes are tense, often rather dark. Everything is simultaneously otherworldly and yet plausible. It's not something I've always seen done that well in the movies. The closest they got is perhaps DN for me.

    I think I agree with that. Yeah, the books aren't deadly serious, but Bond is a realistic character who grounds the fantastic world. And I love when the movies start with plausible events, but by the end of it everything is ridiculous and you wonder exactly how things escalated so much. :)) Dr No is brilliant in this way, and trigger warning: Spectre gushing one of the reasons I love Spectre so much is the way it starts out believably (apart from the heightened realism of the action), but eventually they pull up in a Rolls Royce at a crater base with sprinklers and palm trees in the middle of nowhere.

    Starting with the mundane (cheating at cards, sending microchips to the Soviet Union, investigating a guy called Sciarra) and ending with the bizarre (foiling a nuclear attack inside Fort Knox, fighting atop the Golden Gate Bridge, watching your childhood enemy drill holes in your brain) is my favorite Bond trope.

    Yeah, it's very much there in the Fleming novels, that sense that Bond becomes involved in these outlandish but very much dangerous situations. I'd love for them to lean into that in the next Bond film - have Bond investigate something routine and over the course of the film realise there's a lot more to it, and before you know it we're in a villain's weird lair and Bond has to stop something terrible.

    I do think the Bond films in general can afford to be a lot more outlandish, possibly even camper than they are now. To be fair, during the later Craig era it was getting there. The SPECTRE party in NTTD felt distinctively otherworldly while also having some quite horrific moments (namely, the SPECTRE agents getting nanobotted). The action was a little too heightened for me, but I enjoyed it.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 17,281
    I think From Russia With Love is the most serious Bond film.
    It's clearly the most realistic.
    After thinking about it, I'd say that (for ME) the most 'deadly serious' Bond movies are DN, LTK, & QOS. And I happen to love all three.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 17,281
    Just now watched LTK. I so love this movie, not quite the perfection of TLD, but close....

  • Posts: 221
    Well normatively I wouldn't call any of them "deadly serious". They're escapist, not particularly realistic spy movies, it's not Schindler's List or Hamlet.

    For a most serious Bond film list I'd say-

    1. QoS
    2. CR
    3. LTK
    4. SF
    5. FRWL

    To address other contenders

    DN- Feels a bit jokier and more camp than FRWL with all of Dr. No's theatrics ("one million dollars!) and the low budget horror moments like the tarantula and "dragon". Still among the most serious of the earlier films

    OHMSS- The Bond/Tracy stuff if of course amongst the most dramatic of the franchise. But all the Piz Gloria silliness with the brainwashing ("I have taught you to love chickens") and "Hilly" means I'm not going to put it ahead of the top five.

    FYEO- Certainly some gritty moments and by far Moore's most dramatic but still a lot of goofy humor.

    TLD- In a similar vein to FYEO has some serious moments like the defection sequence and threatening Pushkin, but also some leftover Moorian humor. Also just has a light touch with the sweet Kara romance anchoring the movie.

    SP- Still amongst the more serious of the franchise on the aggregate, but it was the first of Craig's to bring in some of the older broad humor like the car chase and landing on the couch and might be the only of Craig's with an unambiguous "happy ending".

    NTTD- Another close call for the top five, but like SP it's jokier than Craig's others (and even FRWL) and the Garden of Death plot is a bit ridiculous for me to put this on top, much like with OHMSS.
  • Posts: 644
    007HallY wrote: »
    I do think the Bond films in general can afford to be a lot more outlandish, possibly even camper than they are now. To be fair, during the later Craig era it was getting there. The SPECTRE party in NTTD felt distinctively otherworldly while also having some quite horrific moments (namely, the SPECTRE agents getting nanobotted). The action was a little too heightened for me, but I enjoyed it.

    The Spectre party was great I thought, with Blofeld's creepy voice saying all that mythic ranting. One of the annoyances of NTTD is the bits where they show you what a great James Bond movie they could have made.
  • MI6HQMI6HQ Having a trip down to Memory Lane.....
    edited July 12 Posts: 933
    CountJohn wrote: »
    Well normatively I wouldn't call any of them "deadly serious". They're escapist, not particularly realistic spy movies, it's not Schindler's List or Hamlet.

    For a most serious Bond film list I'd say-

    1. QoS
    2. CR
    3. LTK
    4. SF
    5. FRWL

    To address other contenders

    DN- Feels a bit jokier and more camp than FRWL with all of Dr. No's theatrics ("one million dollars!) and the low budget horror moments like the tarantula and "dragon". Still among the most serious of the earlier films

    OHMSS- The Bond/Tracy stuff if of course amongst the most dramatic of the franchise. But all the Piz Gloria silliness with the brainwashing ("I have taught you to love chickens") and "Hilly" means I'm not going to put it ahead of the top five.

    FYEO- Certainly some gritty moments and by far Moore's most dramatic but still a lot of goofy humor.

    TLD- In a similar vein to FYEO has some serious moments like the defection sequence and threatening Pushkin, but also some leftover Moorian humor. Also just has a light touch with the sweet Kara romance anchoring the movie.

    SP- Still amongst the more serious of the franchise on the aggregate, but it was the first of Craig's to bring in some of the older broad humor like the car chase and landing on the couch and might be the only of Craig's with an unambiguous "happy ending".

    NTTD- Another close call for the top five, but like SP it's jokier than Craig's others (and even FRWL) and the Garden of Death plot is a bit ridiculous for me to put this on top, much like with OHMSS.

    Not sure about LTK either, sure it's brutal if you watched it, but it also shares some goofiness, there's the ninjas, televangelist and that cult like lair, the toothpaste gadget, Pam capturing Bond and Q's skeletons using that camera, Q with his broom gadget, and of course the winking fish.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,345
    I don't get the issue with the winking fish at all. The actual decoration seemed to wink, like that's what the thing does. Why not end your movie with it? It wasn't a goofball camera trick like the pigeon or anything...
  • Posts: 644
    I don't get the issue with the winking fish at all. The actual decoration seemed to wink, like that's what the thing does. Why not end your movie with it? It wasn't a goofball camera trick like the pigeon or anything...

    I never thought twice about the winking fish till I saw on here people compared it to the double-take pigeon. To me, it was an 'ornament' that had a winking eye, no different to those pecking birds from the seventies or those nodding dogs people used to put on the back seat of cars.
  • Posts: 649
    007HallY wrote: »
    I do think the Bond films in general can afford to be a lot more outlandish, possibly even camper than they are now. To be fair, during the later Craig era it was getting there. The SPECTRE party in NTTD felt distinctively otherworldly while also having some quite horrific moments (namely, the SPECTRE agents getting nanobotted). The action was a little too heightened for me, but I enjoyed it.

    The Spectre party was great I thought, with Blofeld's creepy voice saying all that mythic ranting. One of the annoyances of NTTD is the bits where they show you what a great James Bond movie they could have made.

    Personally I preferred SPECTRE's meeting being this strange Bunga Bunga party rather than in a stuffy boardroom with the cliched 'one of our own failed so let's kill him' moment. It felt original for a Bond film, but suitably outlandish. Yes, I agree, I will say there are some moments of brilliance in NTTD despite my issues with it.

    I do wish that Safin's Garden of Death had some of that sense of the fantastical integrated into its production design and concept. It could have looked much more otherworldly and surreal, perhaps someone could have been thrown into it in order to show how dangerous it is... what we got felt a bit underwhelming, like a little plot of land with some tomatoes that someone has called their 'garden'.
  • MI6HQMI6HQ Having a trip down to Memory Lane.....
    edited July 12 Posts: 933
    007HallY wrote: »
    007HallY wrote: »
    I do think the Bond films in general can afford to be a lot more outlandish, possibly even camper than they are now. To be fair, during the later Craig era it was getting there. The SPECTRE party in NTTD felt distinctively otherworldly while also having some quite horrific moments (namely, the SPECTRE agents getting nanobotted). The action was a little too heightened for me, but I enjoyed it.

    The Spectre party was great I thought, with Blofeld's creepy voice saying all that mythic ranting. One of the annoyances of NTTD is the bits where they show you what a great James Bond movie they could have made.

    Personally I preferred SPECTRE's meeting being this strange Bunga Bunga party rather than in a stuffy boardroom with the cliched 'one of our own failed so let's kill him' moment. It felt original for a Bond film, but suitably outlandish.

    But that stuffy boardroom thing was very Fleming though.

    Agreed, I also didn't liked that cliched 'one of our own failed so let's kill him' moment too, either.

    But when it comes to the atmosphere of those scenes, I preferred that boardroom meeting in SP, it felt very Fleming, especially when I'm envisioning the description in the Thunderball novel.
  • edited July 12 Posts: 649
    MI6HQ wrote: »
    007HallY wrote: »
    007HallY wrote: »
    I do think the Bond films in general can afford to be a lot more outlandish, possibly even camper than they are now. To be fair, during the later Craig era it was getting there. The SPECTRE party in NTTD felt distinctively otherworldly while also having some quite horrific moments (namely, the SPECTRE agents getting nanobotted). The action was a little too heightened for me, but I enjoyed it.

    The Spectre party was great I thought, with Blofeld's creepy voice saying all that mythic ranting. One of the annoyances of NTTD is the bits where they show you what a great James Bond movie they could have made.

    Personally I preferred SPECTRE's meeting being this strange Bunga Bunga party rather than in a stuffy boardroom with the cliched 'one of our own failed so let's kill him' moment. It felt original for a Bond film, but suitably outlandish.

    But that stuffy boardroom thing was very Fleming though.

    Agreed, I also didn't liked that cliched 'one of our own failed so let's kill him' moment too, either.

    But when it comes to the atmosphere of those scenes, I preferred that boardroom meeting in SP, it felt very Fleming, especially when I'm envisioning the description in the Thunderball novel.

    It's broadly an idea from Fleming, but so what? It's very different after you've seen some of these tropes in the films many times before that. The fact that Blofeld is silhouetted, his face obscured the way it is doesn't convey the same level of mystery as it does in the 60s films (especially considering we know this is Christoph Waltz from the marketing alone). I remember watching SP the first time and just waiting for the moment when one of the SPECTRE agents would get killed in some fashion... hell, if anything it was slightly underwhelming just having Hinx gouge out some guy's eyes, and I didn't feel they adequately built up the tension leading to that moment.

    Also, the scale of the meeting and the room is very much an invention of the films. In the novel the room they are in only has about 20 people, and is relatively close knit and shadowy. The idea of someone being electrocuted in their seat simply because their leader was unhappy with them is far more ghastly to think about.

    I felt that the Cuba party in NTTD actually evoked the spirit of the Fleming novels far more than that scene in SP did in a sense. I would have loved for Bond to have infiltrated something more similar to that in SP and for the film to have subverted some expectations/tropes.
  • goldenswissroyalegoldenswissroyale Switzerland
    Posts: 3,583
    I don't get the issue with the winking fish at all. The actual decoration seemed to wink, like that's what the thing does. Why not end your movie with it? It wasn't a goofball camera trick like the pigeon or anything...

    I never thought twice about the winking fish till I saw on here people compared it to the double-take pigeon. To me, it was an 'ornament' that had a winking eye, no different to those pecking birds from the seventies or those nodding dogs people used to put on the back seat of cars.

    Yep, no problem with the winking fish. How can this be a point of discussion so often?
  • Posts: 17,703
    I would love to see re edited versions of the John Glen's films with all the absurd humor removed, as much as I like those films the tone was often uneven. The grittier aspects of JG's films are what make them good for me.

    I'd like that. I often wish I could overlook the silly bits like others can, but they just ruin the film's credibility for me. Octopussy is one of the worst offenders. It askes to care about Bond escaping the villains, and then has him swinging through the trees doing a Tarzan yell, (the absolute nadir of the series for me).
    Too often in the Moore era they ruined any tension with an infantile joke for cheap laughs.

    As to the original posters question, I think From Russia With Love is the most serious Bond film.

    OP is the worst, that Jungle sequence is just one bad gag after another which totally undermines the later line 'Survival of the fittest'.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    edited July 12 Posts: 21,079
    Though I was fast to answer, I'm now struggling a bit with the keyword in the question: serious.

    To me, that means being devoid of laughter, all "business". I don't take it to be directly synonymous with "credible" or "realistic".

    Credible, to me, means that the film follows its own rules to a fault. A Star Wars film can have "credible" scenes and performances if they align with the inner logic of the film and its universe.

    Realistic, to me, means grounded-in-reality, plausible in the real world. A comedy, as such, can be perfectly realistic.

    So, LTK is indeed a serious film. Bond clearly means business and Dalton is almost in pain when he has to drop a funny line. It's a revenge plot after all, and that means there's little room for jokes. But then you have the Q scenes, too many of them--not because it's Q, but because they make the film very tone-uneven.

    This, in fact, made me think about TLD, which, in many regards, may be at least as serious a film as LTK, but without the many silly Q jokes. Sure, there's the couch, the teddy bear and the "ghettoblaster", but TLD starts with the cold-blooded assassination of two 00s, and shows Saunders' brutal demise as well as James Bond being extremely cynical about his employment. Bond upsets a woman and her son, rips the clothes of a woman, seems ready to execute a Russian general and enters a real-world conflict. Even his relationship with Kara is by all means "serious". She's the only one and he genuinely seems to love her. She's not a throwaway one-night-stand for all we know. Then again, there's "Pig" and a supervisor who's being distracted by a woman's chest; we see naked soldiers running from demolished showers and -- oh yeah -- the cello case chase. I may be wrong in calling the film serious after all. ;-)

    That's the thing with the John Glen films, isn't it? Most of them have moments so serious that they'd almost pale the Craigs by comparison. But then there's a comedic bit here and one there to upset the tonal balance of the film. For every stone-cold killing of an ally, there's a crocodile, monkey or clown suit--not to mention a Tarzan yell, flying carpet (thank heaven they cut that one out!), and so on. It's like the films wanted to be serious... but not really.
  • Posts: 649
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    That's the thing with the John Glen films, isn't it? Most of them have moments so serious that they'd almost pale the Craigs by comparison. But then there's a comedic bit here and one there to upset the tonal balance of the film. For every stone-cold killing of an ally, there's a crocodile, monkey or clown suit--not to mention a Tarzan yell, flying carpet (thank heaven they cut that one out!), and so on. It's like the films wanted to be serious... but not really.

    I suppose by Glen's/the producer's logic it was meant to supply some relief from that seriousness. Admittedly it doesn't always translate very well in practice (the Tarzan yells and tiger roars being the main culprits).

    To be fair though, the main reason why I love the clown suit from OP is because it's a silly idea played very seriously in the context of the film. It's foreshadowed with 009's killing, and by the time Bond has to wear it we have that sense of foreboding. That and it genuinely seems quite horrifying, the idea of Bond having to disarm a bomb which is a very real threat while either being laughed at or thought crazy by the police because of what he's wearing.
  • VenutiusVenutius Yorkshire
    edited July 12 Posts: 1,287
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Though I was fast to answer, I'm now struggling a bit with the keyword in the question: serious. ...I don't take it to be directly synonymous with "credible" or "realistic".

    Beat me to it. This thread's about which Bond film has the least amount of humour, not which's the most realistic, right?
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 21,079
    Venutius wrote: »
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Though I was fast to answer, I'm now struggling a bit with the keyword in the question: serious. ...I don't take it to be directly synonymous with "credible" or "realistic".

    Beat me to it. This thread's about which Bond film has the least amount of humour, not which's the most realistic, right?

    Exactly, or at least that's how I take it to be.
  • Posts: 1,794
    I don't get the issue with the winking fish at all. The actual decoration seemed to wink, like that's what the thing does. Why not end your movie with it? It wasn't a goofball camera trick like the pigeon or anything...

    People's issue also is with Felix smiling and talking about fishing. I suppose ending up miserable would've validated the film more? I mean after what the guy went through and what his friend did to avenge him was likely important in his recovery. No, it won't bring back his late wife or limbs, but it's something to lift his spirits. Why is that so wrong? At least there wasn't some cheap double-entendre like in some of the Moore or Brosnan films.
Sign In or Register to comment.