Live and Let Die
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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for Live and Let Die can be found here.

When three British MI6 agents are killed -- one in New Orleans, one in New York, and one on the small Caribbean island of San Monique -- and the only connection between them is San Monique's prime minister Dr Kananga (Yaphet Kotto), 007 agent James Bond (Roger Moore) is sent to New York to determine what that connection might be. However, his arrival has already been foretold by tarot card reader Solitaire (Jane Seymour). Solitaire's elusive boss, a crime lord who goes by the name 'Mr Big', is not about to let Bond interfere with his plan to flood the United States with over a billion dollars of heroin.

All of the James Bond movies up to and including The Man With the Golden Gun (1974) are based on novels by British author Ian Fleming [1908-1964]. Live and Let Die is based on Fleming's 1954 novel of the same name. It was adapted for the screen by American screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz. Live and Let Die is the first movie to feature Roger Moore as James Bond.

Live and Let Die was written and performed by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney with his band Wings -- the first band he founded after the breakup of the Beatles. It reached #2 in the charts in the U.S. and was produced by long time Beatles producer George Martin who also provided the musical score for the film. The song is still performed live by Sir Paul McCartney himself. Guns 'N Roses famously covered the song for their 1991 album, Use Your Illusion I.

Bond is awakened at 5:30 AM in his London apartment by M (Bernard Lee) and Miss Moneypenny (Lois Maxwell). M wants Bond to fly to New York in order to investigate Dr Kananga, the dictator of a small island in the Caribbean. While in New York, Bond has a run in with Mr Big, who is really Kananga in disguise, and meets his virgin Tarot card reader, Solitaire. When Kananga/Mr Big leaves New York, Bond follows him to San Monique. He allows CIA double agent Rosie Carver (Gloria Hendry) to lead him to Kananga's house, where Rosie is shot by one of Kananga's scarecrows, and Bond tricks Solitaire into becoming his lover, causing Solitaire to lose her powers. When Bond learns that Kananga is using the island to grow heroin poppies, he and Solitaire go by boat to New Orleans so that Bond can investigate the third murder, but they are both apprehended by Kananga. Solitaire is returned to San Monique to be sacrificed in a voodoo ceremony, and Bond is sent to an alligator farm from which he escapes by jumping on the backs of the alligators. Bond then returns to San Monique to rescue Solitaire.

No. Diamonds Are Forever (1971) was the last Bond movie to feature SPECTRE due to a lawsuit brought by film-maker Kevin McClory. McClory had worked with Ian Fleming to create what was to be the first 007 movie. It was scrapped, however, and Fleming went on to use various ideas from the abandoned film, such as Ernst Stavro Blofeld and SPECTRE, in five of the first six Bond movies. McClory later sued for the rights to Blofeld and SPECTRE, both of which had never been featured in a Fleming novel until Thunderball. Thus, they had to stop using SPECTRE in the movies. This is also what enabled McClory to make the only "unofficial" Bond movie, Never Say Never Again (1983), the only Bond movie ever to feature SPECTRE and Blofeld again (except for an implied cameo of the Blofeld character in the opening scenes of For Your Eyes Only (1981), during which the name "Blofeld" is never spoken).

The most commonly given answer is that the Ian Fleming novel Live and Let Die did not feature a scene in which Bond is given any equipment by the Quartermaster, an aspect that is part of most of the other novels. The filmmakers wanted to reflect this in the movie, so they did not include the Q character in the movie. Q is referenced, however, when Bond demonstrates to M how his special order magnetic wristwatch works. (The special edition DVD booklet says that it was because of a scheduling conflict with Desmond Llewelyn.)

After the incendiary bombs explode, blowing up the poppy fields, Bond cuts Solitaire free. They attempt to escape via the lift down into the grave, but Baron Samedi (Geoffrey Holder) comes rising up out of it. Bond and Samedi take a few swings at each other, with Bond eventually knocking Samedi into the coffin with the snakes. Bond and Solitaire then ride the lift down into the grave and find themselves in an underground series of caves and passageways. They search for a way out but end up running straight to Kananga. Kananga has Bond de-armed and tests out his compressed gas gun on the couch, which inflates before exploding. He then ties Bond and Solitaire to a winch and prepares to lower them into a tank of water to be fed to the sharks. Bond activates his magnetic wristwatch and attracts a gas pellet that Kananga left on a table. He then uses the whirring dial of the watch to saw through the ropes binding him to the winch. He leaps to the ground, and he and Kananga go at each other, both of them falling into the water. Bond forces the gas pellet down Kananga's throat, and Kananga proceeds to blow up and explode. The next evening, Bond and Solitaire board a train heading back to New York. After playing a game of gin rummy in their cabin, they prepare to sleep. While Bond is in the bathroom, Tee Hee (Julius Harris) sneaks into the cabin, flips Solitaire's berth against the wall, and then attacks Bond when he emerges. Just when it looks like Tee Hee is going to get his pincers on Bond, Bond reaches for a wire cutter in his suitcase and snips the wires on Tee Hee's mechanical arm. Bond then snaps the pincers to a window bar and kicks Tee Hee out the window, his arm still hanging there. Bond tosses the arm out after him. When Bond pulls down Solitaire's berth, she asks him what he's doing. "Just being disarming," is his cheeky reply. In the final scene, Samedi can be seen seated at the front of the train, laughing maniacally as it speeds down the track.

Mr. Big's real name is not Dr. Kananga, it is Buonaparte Ignance Gallia. He is not a diplomat but an agent of SMERSH. He is not involved in smuggling drugs but Sir Henry "Bloody" Morgan's treasure. Unlike in the movie, Solitaire is biracial. Solitaire uses playing cards instead of Tarot cards. Tee-Hee does not have a mechanical hand. He breaks Bond's left pinkie finger so he cannot have sex with Solitaire. There is no Rosie Carver or J.W. Pepper. Since Live and Let Die was written before Doctor No (1958), Quarrel Jr. is Quarrel. None of the story takes place in New Orleans. The latter half of the novel takes place in Jamaica. Baron Samedi is not a separate character but rather is who Mr. Big's followers think he is. Mr.Big's restaurant is called "The Boneyard", not "Fillet of Soul". Felix Leiter is mauled by sharks as he is in the film Licence to Kill (1989). Bond and Solitaire are keel-hauled, as he is in the film For Your Eyes Only (1981). They are rescued by a limpet mine that Bond had placed under Mr. Big's yacht. Mr. Big tries to swim after them but is eaten by shark and barracuda.

The poster depicts Bond firing a large cannon with a scantily-clad woman perched on the barrel. A publicity photograph taken for the film shows the gun mounted on the deck of a boat. This was one of the first publicity photos issued, to give a taste of Moore in a Bond-like action pose. As the boat chase was the first scene filmed, it is likely that the gun was mounted on one of the large boats seen at the end of the chase. It is unlikely that it was ever intended to feature in the film, but that the artist had limited material to work with at the time the poster painting was being created, or simply didn't know, or care, whether this represented an actual included scene.

Including Live and Let Die, Moore made seven movies in which he played James Bond: Live and Let Die (1973), The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), Moonraker (1979), For Your Eyes Only (1981), Octopussy (1983), and A View to a Kill (1985).

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