Blofeld of your choosing??

HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
edited March 2011 in Bond Movies Posts: 4,399
out of all the films in which Ernst Stavro Blofeld was present - which incarnation of Bond's nemesis was your favorite?... the list includes...

<b>Anthony Dawson/Eric Pohlmann</b> <i>(From Russia With Love)</i>
<b>Anthony Dawson/Joseph Wiseman</b> <i>(Thunderball)</i>
<b>Donlad Pleasence</b> <i>(You Only Live Twice)</i>
<b>Telly Savalas</b> <i>(On Her Majesty's Secret Service)</i>
<b>Charles Gray</b> <i>(Diamonds Are Forever)</i>
<b>John Hollis/Robert Rietty</b> <i>(For Your Eyes Only)</i>
<b>Max Von Sydow</b> <i>(Never Say Never Again)</i>

my favorite would have to be Telly Savalas... just edging out the duo of Dawson and Wiseman in Thunderball - probably more a credit to epic voice of Wiseman...

but overall, i think Telly delivers a masterful performance as Bond's nemesis.. he's every bit as cool, collected, and intimidating as Bond ... i always think of the one scene, where Bond (as Sir Hilary) says "Well, if you put it that way.." .. Telly drags off his cigarette, calming blows out a plume of smoke and replies "I do put it like that.." - what a set of brass on this guy - i love it... not only is his portrayal of Blofeld tough and sinister - but he plays it with a certain amount of likability and sophistication - that makes him seem more like a real person, and not an overblown comic book villain (ie: Pleasence)... Charles Gray approached the role in the same sort of way that Savalas did - but lacked the menace that Telly had.... Charles seemed like the guy who would talk a lot of crap, but once you stood up and smacked him around a few times, he would shut up.... Telly on the other hand would smack you back, and then dress you up and down 7 ways to sunday on why you shouldn't do that again - that is, unless you wanted a broken arm...
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Comments

  • edited March 2011 Posts: 19,339
    Telly Savalas for me - shame he was priced out of DAF due to his sudden fame .If he was in it then it would have been a more serious film even if Connery came back,rather than the cross-dressing,totally mis-cast Charles Gray.
  • DaltonCraig007DaltonCraig007 They say, "Evil prevails when good men fail to act." What they ought to say is, "Evil prevails."
    Posts: 15,534
    Tough choice... I would say Charles Gray, with Savalas just behind.
  • LudsLuds MIA
    Posts: 1,986
    In order:
    1. Anthony Dawson/Eric Pohlmann (From Russia With Love)
      Wonderful voice, made the character have a kind of supernatural aura.
    2. Anthony Dawson/Joseph Wiseman (Thunderball)
      Similar as above, Blofeld was better left as a secretive figure, postrayed by his cat and hand rather than in flesh.
    3. Telly Savalas (On Her Majesty's Secret Service)
      Outstanding performance, very physical compared to Pleasence, more menacing.
    4. Donlad Pleasence (You Only Live Twice)
      The best and most evil looking Blofeld, he only lacked physical presence.
    5. Charles Gray (Diamonds Are Forever)
      Decent effort but terribly written character. Just can't picture him as the same Blofeld.
    6. John Hollis/Robert Rietty (For Your Eyes Only)
      I understand what they did, basically to kill off the character which they couldn't name due to legal reasons... But how did he get his bald look again?
    7. Max Von Sydow (Never Say Never Again)
      This nice old grand-pa couldn't hurt a fly, how can he be Blofeld?
  • NicNacNicNac Administrator, Moderator
    Posts: 7,447
    Donald Pleasence. One fo the great images of the Bond films is that first time he spins around.
  • Posts: 19,339
    How some members can like Charles Gray's Blofeld over Savalas and Pleasance bewilders me.
  • MajorDSmytheMajorDSmythe Still waiting for the Jena Malone Batwoman movie that's never going to be made.Moderator
    Posts: 11,948
    Savalas always felt too theatrical and a little limp wristed as Blofeld. Which is a shame, as in Lisa And The Devil, Savalas was fantastic as the sinister Leandro.

    Favourite, it would have to be a tie between Pleasence and Dawson/Pohlman.
  • DaltonCraig007DaltonCraig007 They say, "Evil prevails when good men fail to act." What they ought to say is, "Evil prevails."
    edited March 2011 Posts: 15,534
    Quoting barryt007:
    How some members can like Charles Gray's Blofeld over Savalas and Pleasance bewilders me.








    Charles Gray :-c
  • Posts: 19,339
    Typical DC007 !!
  • DaltonCraig007DaltonCraig007 They say, "Evil prevails when good men fail to act." What they ought to say is, "Evil prevails."
    Posts: 15,534
    Quoting barryt007: Typical DC007 !!

    image
  • Samuel001Samuel001 Moderator
    edited December 2013 Posts: 13,305
    Telly Savalas is fantastic as is Donlad Pleasence but if you want to keep Blofeld in the shadows as perhaps he should have been Anthony Dawson is your man. That voice - even better than James Earl Jones' in my opinion.
  • Posts: 2,486
    definitely Savalas
  • saunderssaunders Living in a world of avarice and deceit
    Posts: 987
    Telly Savalas is by far my favourite Blofeld, though he is not really much like the ever evolving character Fleming envisaged. Telly's charisma and natural authority just shines through, and his scenes with George are just terrific even raising Lazenby's own performance (apparently director Peter Hunt got Telly to deliberately needle George to create a genuine air of animosity between the two stars). Probably the closest to resemble Fleming's arch villain is Max Von Sydow and it is a shame that he's woefully underused in NSNA. Donald Pleasence in my view must of been a great disappointment for the fans in '67 who had been gradually built up for this climatic meeting since DN, he just doesn't seem like the sophisticated and intelligent leader that Pohlmanns vocal performances (for I believe he actually did the voices for both FRWL and TB) would suggest . Charles Gray was sadly misdirected in this film, he was a very good actor and could do sinister performances very well but this camp performance was misjudged to say the least.
  • edited March 2011 Posts: 638
    Quoting saunders: Probably the closest to resemble Fleming's arch villain is Max Von Sydow and it is a shame that he's woefully underused in NSNA.
    Agreed. I wish Von Sydow had more scenes in NSNA as he really could have done something great with the role. I like the face not seen Blofeld of FRWL and TB as well as the face of Pleasence, but Pleasence did not have the voice of physical presence in the books, Blofeld was a big man. Savalas may have been the closest in that regard.
  • HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
    edited March 2011 Posts: 4,399
    Quoting saunders: Pohlmanns vocal performances (for I believe he actually did the voices for both FRWL and TB)
    Joseph Wiseman (yes Dr. No) provided the voice of Blofeld in Thunderball... you can tell there is a distinct difference in speech pattern and vocal tone between Pohlmann's and Wiseman's voice...

    Pohlmann's is more slow and deliberate - and also low, and had a slight grumble to it..

    Wiseman's is rigid, and harsh on the consonants - and it's also just a little higher than Pohlmann's..
  • Posts: 1,497
    To me they are almost completely different characters. I appreciate them all for their unique characteristics

    FRWL/TB: Even if there are two different voices (which I had no idea...is this really true?? IMDB is still crediting Pohlmann for TB), this is essentially the same portrayal and the best IMO. The mystery behind the character adds the most menace: the perfect way to portray the Spectre, a mystery rogue organization

    YOLT: Donald Pleasance: he comes across as the most meniacal and deranged. But the Blofeld from FRWL/TB seemed to have a cool about him mixed with the sinister that Pleasance lacks. Pleasance just plays the twisted megalomaniac the whole time.

    OHMSS: I love Savalas' performance and simply the persona he has, yet I don't see the same character in him that I imagined from FRWL/TB, maybe it's the New Yorker accent. He's almost too cool, that I find he lacks a bit of that mad-man edge.

    DAF: Once again, almost a completely different character from the original incarnation. So I view him as a standalone villain. Frankly, I love Charles Gray's performance. All of his dialogue is great. I really find the balance of maniacal super-villain mixed with wit and a bit of androgyny to be very convincing.

    The others? They don't count. Something about making Bond a sandwich or something? X_X
  • Max Von Sydow could have been the best Blofeld perhaps had he been in On Her Majesty's Secret Service. That has always been a fantasy of mine. But we can't compare his performance in NSNA (as well as the Blofelds from FRWL and TB) to the three actors who got to play the role as a main villain.

    Out of those three, Savalas easily.
  • Posts: 107
    None of the "fleshed out" incarnations of Blofeld muster even a fraction of the menace he did when he was still a mystery man.

    "I have satisfied myself that one of you is clearly guilty of embezzlement."

    Ohhhhhhhhh crap, I hope he doesn't think it's me.
  • Posts: 11,175
    Anthony Dawson/Eric Pohlmann were fantastic in FRWL but out of the "known" Bloefeld's I'd have to pick DP. So iconic, usually when I think of Blofeld its him that comes to mind. Also, DP has a pretty scary voice.
  • KerimKerim Istanbul Not Constantinople
    Posts: 2,629
    1. OHMSS
    2. FRWL
    3. TB
    4. YOLT
    5. DAF
    6. NSNA
    7. FYEO
  • WillardWhyteWillardWhyte The Dark Alleyways is Where They're Gonna Find Us
    Posts: 780
    Donlad Pleasence (You Only Live Twice)
  • Posts: 1,080
    Donald Pleasence (You Only Live Twice)


    This will always be my fav. That look and the way he acts is the iconic Blofeld for me. He gets enough screen time to make it work too. To me, it is one of the saving graces of the film.
  • AgentJamesBond007AgentJamesBond007 Vesper’s grave
    Posts: 2,574
    The unseen Blofeld was the best. He was more menacing than the others. Props to Anthony Dawson, Eric Pohlman, and Joseph Wiseman
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 19,724
    The earlier Blofelds, the ones whose face we don't see, are easily the more menacing. It is my humble opinion that once Blofeld was revealed in full, it felt like a bit of a let-down. Therefore the Dawson Blofelds, both of them, make the top of my list. The remaining three are ranked as follows: Savalas > Pleasence > Gray. I don't like the FYEO Blofeld very much and I'm not sure about von Sydow at all. I like the actor but his Blofeld is far from interesting to me. Brandauer gets all the good stuff in NSNA if you ask me.
  • edited March 2011 Posts: 14
    Michael Lonsdale. The best "on-screen" Blofeld that never was. :-|

    Of course, he could only be called 'Hugo Drax' since this was to feature the MR title from the book itself but, just think about it for a moment.

    All the key elements were there and in place...

    He had the voice-quality and style of the great "unseen-Blofelds" of FRWL and TB and his physical appearance featured the established Donald Pleasance/Mao-suit tradition from YOLT.

    There was more of Blofeld in Lonsdale's "Drax" than either of the two gents from DAF or NSNA were able to present.
  • Samuel001Samuel001 Moderator
    edited December 2013 Posts: 13,305
    Quoting DarthDimi: I'm not sure about von Sydow at all. I like the actor but his Blofeld is far
    from interesting to me.
    Von Sydow hardly had any scenes in his film at all, did he? It must have been about 2 or 3 at most, maybe just the introduction to him. Anyone know? The fact he had so few scenes can't help his case at all really.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 19,724
    He set up a meeting with Fatima in the room and Largo on the monitor and later on addressed NATO. I guess it comes down to 2 or 3 scenes indeed. But 2 or 3 really powerful scenes could leave an impression. Let's be honest, you don't hire Von Sydow and then waste him. ;))
  • Samuel001Samuel001 Moderator
    Posts: 13,305
    True but for me watching the film, the fact he appears for a few scenes at the start and isn't seen again gives him no presense later on at all, Blofeld is not even important to the plot. This being a "one off" non-EON film doesn't help matters in the slightest either. I'd argue maybe Von Sydow was wasted.
  • Posts: 136
    I find that the unseen Blofelds have more impact, particularly with the great voicework by Pohlman and Wiseman.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 16,351
    Luds wrote:
    <li><b>John Hollis/Robert Rietty</b> (For Your Eyes Only)
    I understand what they did, basically to kill off the character which they couldn't name due to legal reasons... But how did he get his bald look again?
    I've been wondering about this idea: after Blofeld was injured in OHMSS, he was partially paralysed, and spent all of his fortune creating his folicled doubles & setting forth the scheme shown in DAF, and later, when nearly broke and minionless, he made that lame, last ditch attempt at Bond's life in the FYEO's PTS as an act of final vengeance, only to get dumped down a smokestack for his troubles (ranting like a lunatic I might add).
    Is this something cinema Bond fans here can accept?
  • Savalas, for sure. I actually think that Gray is a close second, if only he didn't have such a stupid script to work with he would be perfect.
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