The fab five

The fab five
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First Published: Sat, Jan 19 2008. 12 02 AM IST

Updated: Sat, Jan 19 2008. 12 02 AM IST
From Russia With Love:
The second Bond film, it gave Double-O-Seven his famed persona as a seducer and spy. Many key ingredients of the formula, used so successfully later in the series, were first introduced in this caper, which was brilliantly shot in London, Istanbul and on board the Orient Express. John F. Kennedy said the original novel was one of his favourites and Sean Connery considers this to be his best Bond film. Once you’ve seen it, it’s not hard to understand why.
Casino Royale:
A bit too violent for some who were brought up on the Roger Moore films, this one reinvented the Bond franchise and took it closer to the rough-cut original in Ian Fleming’s books. Proof: when asked by a bartender whether he liked his Martini shaken or stirred, Bond replies: “Do I look like I give a damn?” The silly witticisms were cut out. And, in a twist to the usual eye-candy moment, Daniel Craig (rather than one of the Bond women) emerges out of the sea in a pair of La Perla swimming trunks.
The Spy Who Loved Me:
By far the best Bond film starring Roger Moore. The villain is a megalomaniac who lives undersea and his henchman has teeth of steel. But these weak story props don’t take away from the fact that this is a stylish film. In keeping with the spirit of détente, Bond and a Russian spy (female, of course) work together to recover submarines armed with missiles. The opening chase on skis in the Alps is stunning.
You Only Live Twice:
This film takes 007 to Japan. The first half of the film has an edginess that was lost in many of the later films, where Bond comes across as an upper-class British snob. The pace of the film was taut, thanks to a very good script by Roald Dahl. And Bond even marries a Japanese woman to make his cover as a local fisherman more convincing.
The first one with Pierce Brosnan, this film was perhaps the last gasp of the old Bond films before the very rough and physical Daniel Craig came along and breathed new life into them. It was the first Bond film that was shot after the collapse of communism in 1989. With the old enemy gone, both writers of spy novels and film-makers living off the Cold War were forced to find new villains. This is the first time Bond reports to a female boss—a clear attempt to make Bond more sensitive and in step with the new times.
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First Published: Sat, Jan 19 2008. 12 02 AM IST
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