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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Roger Moore makes a very impressive debut as a new Bond for a new(ish) decade

Author: GusF from Ireland
27 June 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Given the fact that the reaction to the unknown George Lazenby in "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" was decidedly mixed, Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman erred on the side of caution in casting Roger Moore, a well established actor with several popular television series (most notably "The Saint") to his name, as the third James Bond. Moore was considered for the role in the aforementioned film and, back at the very beginning, "Dr. No". He makes for a great Bond, wisely choosing not to try and imitate Connery. I've never seen "The Saint" so I can't say how his performance as Bond compares to his performance as Simon Templar. In contrast to the complete neophyte Lazenby, he already had an almost 30 year acting career under his belt at this stage and was therefore confident enough to immediately put his own stamp on the role. He plays Bond in a more light-hearted manner more than either of his predecessors and the script plays to his strengths, mostly portraying Bond as a witty, charming lovable rogue. I had no trouble accepting him as 007 from his (very funny) first scene.

At 45 years old, Moore was the oldest actor to make his debut as Bond. Conversely, the main Bond villain and main Bond girl are among the very youngest, given that Yaphet Kotto and Jane Seymour were 33 and 22 at the time. Kotto, whom I know best as Lt. Al Giardello in "Homicide: Life on the Street", is wonderful as Dr. Kananga, the first Bond villain since Goldfinger who is simply out to make a quick buck. He is very charismatic and yet suitably menacing in the role of the tyrant and gangster who tries to paint himself publicly as a selfless leader who is merely trying to improve the lot of people of San Monique and foster friendly relations with his neighbours.

Jane Seymour, in her first major film appearance, is enchanting as the (initially) virginal Solitaire. The character represents the classic damsel in distress but her naivety - which seems entirely appropriate to the character, in contrast to Tiffany Case in "Diamonds Are Forever" - makes her a very sympathetic character, as does the fact that she is essentially the prisoner of Kananga who uses her extrasensory perception as a weapon against his presumably numerous enemies. She is a character who is easily manipulated by all those around her, even Bond who fools her into sleeping with him for his own purposes, thus robbing her of her psychic powers. However, Bond grows more and more of fond of her as time passes. Interestingly, she is the first character who is confirmed to have lost her virginity to Bond. I'd like to think that the character grows stronger over the course of the film but this isn't made too explicit.

The rest of the supporting cast is very strong. On his eighth film, Bernard Lee is reliably gruff self as M and the scene in which Bond tries to prevent him from finding the missing Italian agent Miss Caruso in his bachelor pad is a delight, hitting all the right notes. Also on her eighth film, Lois Maxwell's appearance as Miss Moneypenny is even shorter than usual and mostly lacks the customary byplay with 007. The absence of Desmond Llewelyn, for the first and only time between "From Russia with Love" in 1963 and "The World is Not Enough" in 1999, is a major disappointment. Gloria Hendry is hugely entertaining as Rosie Carver, even if the character is a rather unconvincing one! She's notable as being the first black woman to have a romantic interlude with Bond. After the poor casting of Norman Burton as Felix Leiter in "Diamonds Are Forever", the character returns with a fifth incarnation in the form of David Hedison, who plays the role with intelligence, charm, wit and charisma. He's easily my favourite Leiter so far and I'm glad that he had so much screen time. I'm looking forward to his return in "Licence to Kill".

Speaking of the depiction of black characters, the blaxploitation elements in the first half an hour or so of the film are rather cringeworthy and embarrassing. I found them a bit hard to watch, if I'm honest. Those scenes were more politically correct than the ones with Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd in "Diamonds Are Forever" but not by much! My least favourite part of the film, however, is definitely the inclusion of Sheriff J.W. Pepper. He adds absolutely nothing to the film. In fact, he detracts from it. For about 15 minutes (during the needlessly long but otherwise very impressive boat chase scene), I felt that I was watching a different film in a different genre. Clifton James is good in the role and Sheriff Pepper would have worked well as a secondary antagonist in "The Cannonball Run" or one of the Muppet films or the like but he doesn't fit into either the film or the Bond universe at all. He's better suited to chasing Kermit and Fozzie than James Bond! I'm really not looking forward to his return in "The Man with the Golden Gun". The rest of the film toned down the over the top humour present in "Diamonds Are Forever" but the Sheriff Pepper scene is the nadir of the film series to date. Kananga's death is played for laughs as well and, while it was perhaps a bit too silly, I didn't mind it all that much.

Overall, this is a hugely enjoyable film and my fourth favourite after "Goldfinger", "From Russia with Love" and "On Her Majesty's Secret Service". Either this film or the Lazenby one would have made a much stronger swansong for Sean Connery than "Diamonds Are Forever". If the blaxploitation elements were toned down and the Sheriff Pepper scene was cut entirely, I'd probably have given this full marks.


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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Best James bond since Thunder-ball

Author: atinder from United Kingdom
10 April 2014

9th April and 8th James bond movie

Live and Let Die (1973)

For the second time now, we have another new face to play James bond Roger Moore, I wasn't to keen at start but as the movie went on,

I thought he did a great Job playing James bond and way to start!

This movie was great, I loved start of the movie, really clever, dark and fun all at the same time.

This as got to be freakiest James bond movie ever, some very strange scenes in this movie.

There were some great actions scenes in this movie and there were some very tense moment in this movie, that me on edge of my seat!

The plot was not all that great however, they won me over with all the action, I found this movie action packed from start to end.

Again this movie did have some dark humour in and there and some actually funny moment.

The acting was great from the whole cast!

I am giving this movie 8 out of 10,

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Excellent 007 Movie

Author: garyldibert from United States
18 January 2014

TITLE: LIVE AND LET DIE was released in theaters on June 27 1973 and the time it took to watch this movie was 120 minutes. Live and Let Die (1973) is the eighth spy film in the James Bond series, and the first to star Roger Moore as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman produced the film although the producers had wanted Sean Connery to return after his role in the previous Bond film Diamonds Are Forever; he declined, sparking a search for a new actor to play James Bond. Roger Moore was signed for the lead role. The film is adapted from the novel of the same name by Ian Fleming. In the film, a Harlem drug lord known as Mr. Big plans to distribute two tons of heroin free so as to put rival drug barons out of business. Mr. Big, however, is revealed the disguised alter ego of Dr. Kananga, a corrupt Caribbean Dictator, who rules San Monique, the fictional island where the heroin poppies are secretly farmed. Bond is investigating the death of three British agents, leading him to Kananga, where he is soon trapped in a world of gangsters and voodoo as he fights to put a stop to the drug baron's scheme. Live and Let Die was released during the height of the Blaxploitation era, and many Blaxploitation archetypes and cliché are depicted such as afro hairstyles, derogatory racial epithets ("honky"), black gangsters, and "pimp mobiles. It departs from the former plots of the James Bond films about megalomaniac super-villains, and instead focuses on drug trafficking, depicted primarily in Blaxploitation films. Moreover, it is set in African American cultural centers such as Harlem, New Orleans, and the Caribbean Islands. It was also the first James Bond film featuring an African American Bond girl to be romantically involved with 007, Rosie Carver, who was played by Gloria Hendry. Despite mixed reviews due to the racial overtones, the film was a box office success.

SUMMARY: Three British MI6 agents, including one "on loan" to the American government, are killed under mysterious circumstances within 24 hours while monitoring the operations of Dr. Kananga, the dictator of a small Caribbean island called San Monique. James Bond is sent to New York City, where the first agent was killed, and where Kananga is currently visiting the UN, to investigate. As soon as Bond arrives in New York City, his driver is killed while taking him to meet Felix Leiter of the CIA and Bond is nearly killed in the ensuing car crash. The driver's killer leads Bond to Mr. Big, a gangster who runs a chain of Fillet of Soul restaurants throughout the United States. It is during his confrontation with Mr. Big that Bond first meets Solitaire, a beautiful virgin tarot expert who has the uncanny ability to see both the future and remote events in the present. In disguise as Mr. Big, Kananga demands that his henchman kill Bond, who manages to escape unscathed. Bond follows Kananga back to San Monique, where he subsequently meets Rosie Carver, a CIA double agent, who is subsequently murdered on the island by Kanaga's scarecrow men after Bond suspects her of working for Kananga. Later he meets the boatman Quarrel, Jr. who takes him to Solitaire's home. Using a stacked tarot deck of only cards showing "The Lovers," Bond tricks her into thinking that seduction is in her future and then seduces her.

QUESTIONS: Why did Solitaire lose her ability to foretell the future? What was Kananga producing and what was he going to do with it? Who was Mr. Big and how did he fit into all of this? Where was Bond and Solitaire taken hostage and why? Who did Kananga turn Solitaire over to and why? What was Kananga doing with a crocodile farm?

MY THOUGHTS: I love this picture. I thought that Roger Moore was one of the best James Bond agents ever. As in all typical Bond movies, the action was intense from beginning to end. This was also the introduction of Jane Seymour who was excellent in her role as Solitaire. I also love the roles of Kananga goons especially the guy with the hook. Because of the action and drama and the Beauty of Jane Seymour I give this movie 10 weasels stars

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Where Live And Let Die Stands

Author: davorinlonac from Australia
8 August 2013

Well, for me its a breath of fresh air to finally see a somewhat more entertaining Bond film from the previous 3. Live and let die has a great theme song, great characters, brilliant bond girl and brilliant first performance by Roger Moore. It has very exciting scenes like the suspenseful crocodile scene. It has the best henchmen and a very cool storyline. With the humor of Sheriff J.W Pepper its also a funny adventure. For me its Roger Moores richest performance as 007 and maybe Roger Moores best adventure.

Live And Let Die stands 13th on my list where I have ranked the Bond films from worst to best. Its main title song makes it stand along side my favorites.

Solitaire is a very memorable Bond girl but to me ain't one of my favorites. There are few things I don't like about the film which makes it stand 13th. There's the weird death of the main villain which really bugs me. Other than that the film is great.


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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Roger Moore

Author: kai ringler from United States
12 July 2013

this isn't a bad James Bond film,, just a little out of the ordinary for a Bond film, I guess for me it had to do with all of the voodoo stuff which I really didn't understand,, I liked all the scenery of New Orleans . Yapphet Kotto was good in this and Jane Seymour was wonderful, especially falling out of bed with her slip revealing well a lot to see. I always liked Roger Moore in the Bond films but this one to me is a little weaker than the other ones,, sure there's comedy, action,, fast cars, and hot women in here, but for some reason I really couldn't get into it like I can other roger moore bond's, maybe after I watch it again I will like it better. I 'm not saying it's bad at all,, just average for a Bond movie I guess.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

One of the big Bond films

Author: Pihlaja from Helsinki
25 May 2013

In some ways this films has a lot of quintessential Bond moments in it. But then in some ways it's very forgettable. Allow me to explain. There are moments in this film that stick with you, that are very memorable. The magnetic watch, one of the more well-known Bond gadgets, for example. Oh it's never fully utilized, not really, but it's a very memorable gadget and allows for some cool scenes. The bayou chase scene is another and certainly one of the more well-known Bond chase scenes. Plus the film is the first Bond film to star Roger Moore, so naturally the style and the acting were both something completely new to the franchise.

The problem is that I had no idea where the plot was going half the time. A lot of the Bond films have this problem where the plot is really there only to move the film from one exotic location to another and to allow room for more action scenes. And this film does just that. This starts to become a problem when the viewer cannot remember just why Bond was chasing after this particular criminal immediately after the movie has ended. There was something about dead agents and the film was pure blaxploitation, but that's about it. I remember most of the individual scenes and some of them were very good, but the film has problems tying these scenes together.

That being said, it's not a huge problem. If you're watching a Bond film, furthermore if you're watching a Roger Moore Bond film, it's pretty much given that you're watching it for the action, the girls, the gadgets and the locations. An interesting plot is a bonus, but not strictly necessary.

What was a bigger problem was the fact that the villains in this particular film were not particularly interesting. Much more focus was given to the fact that they were black than it was given to pretty much anything else. A few weeks later and I have problems remembering what they even looked like, much less what their names or agendas were. Still, this is regrettable, but doesn't ruin the film completely.

This is a Bond film worth watching, mainly because it's the first Roger Moore Bond film and it has some really cool scenes in it. It's not the best James Bond film there is, not by far, but I had fun with it.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Live and let try to watch this movie

Author: ironhorse_iv from United States
1 November 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Live and Let's Die' is probably the best version of Roger Moore's James Bond series as the Bond movies tend to get progressively sillier, blander, and dumber. The first movie which he portray James Bond, is far the less stupid of all his James Bond movies. Roger Moore was hired to replace Sean Connery whom star in the previous film 'Diamonds are Forever'. During this time, they only try to replace Connery before with George Lazenby. It was really up in the air, whom was going to become the new bond in the oncoming film 'Live and Let's Die'. They choose Roger Moore. What made Roger Moore become a better Bond than George Lazenby are because of two reasons: first off, he was an actor, not a male model which Lazenby was. Roger Moore is able to play suave, debonair, sophisticated, dashing adventurers due to his works in the successful TV series 'The Saint' and 'The Persuaders.' that made him seem a perfect fit. Second, while Lazenby copycat a bit of Connery. Roger Moore made Bond fit to his own personality and strengths as an actor by having a quick of wit and beguilingly charm. "Live and Let Die' was created trying to cash in on the Blaxpolitation genre created by movies like 'Shaft'. The opening song "Live and Let Die' by Paul McCarthy of Beatles fame, is one of the most favorite Bond's opening songs ever. It even nominated at the Academy Award for Best Song of that year. The plot finds Bond traveling from Harlem to New Orleans to the fictional Caribbean island of San Monique somewhere near Jamaica on the trail of the Prime Minister Kananga (Yaphet Kotto) that also lives a secret life as Mr. Big, a jive-talking' pimp drug trade crime lord. Following Kananga around, are a series of henchman with outlandish character such as soft-spoken Whisper, the claw-armed Tee Hee, and the dancing Voodoo priest Baron Samedi. The Bond Girls are play by afro 'Cleopatra Jones' Rosie Carver whom work for Bond's CIA pal Felix Leiter. (David Hedison). Then there is Solitaire (Jane Seymour of Dr. Quinn fame) as Kananga's virginal Tarot reader. Returning characters also comes to come back as Quarrel Jr. is the son of the character from 'Dr. No", Miss Money Penny and M. Sadly, Desmond Llewelyn does not appear as Q in this film. There are a bit of silly scenes, once and then. Pill shark explode? No need to spoil them, but the scene with Mrs. Bell and bigoted hick Sheriff J.W. Pepper (Clifton James) is die hard funny. The character of J.W Pepper was the basis for Jackie Gleason's character in the 'Smokey and the Bandit' movies. Other memorable moments include the chases between double-decker bus chase, Bond racing a grounded plane around a runway, and the speedboat chase through the Louisiana levee system. The ending is very memorable. So give it a watch and you find yourself liking this movie as much as I do.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Yaphet Kotto Does That Voodoo So Well

Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York
18 June 2009

My favorite essayer of James Bond debuted in this film. Live And Let Die marked the debut of Roger Moore as intrepid British secret agent 007. I've always thought that Moore perfectly fitted the public's idea of what to expect from James Bond than any other actor who portrayed him, although purists who faithfully have read the Ian Flemming novels would no doubt disagree.

Moore was in an interesting position with this film. With Sean Connery finally and as he thought irrevocably never playing 007 again and with George Lazenby not capturing the dollars of the movie going public, if Moore had failed in the role, no doubt the James Bond series would have come to an end.

When you think of some of the plans of world domination that Sean Connery foiled in his films that SPECTRE had, Moore's assignment in Live And Let Die is kind of minor league stuff. Three British agents are killed almost simultaneously in different parts of the world, one at the United Nations in New York, one in the New Orleans French Quarter, and one on the Caribbean island nation of San Monique that is ruled by Yaphetto Kotto. That's what 007's mission is, to find out what links these deaths in these disparate areas of the globe.

Kotto is our head villain and while his ambition isn't quite SPECTRE domination of the world, it's still pretty extensive. He has some connections with a Harlem racketeer and also with some voodoo priests in all these areas. In fact voodoo and the fear of it forms a great piece of his method of keeping power and part of the plot as well.

Roger Moore and Jane Seymour who was 'introduced' in Live And Let Die have more narrow escapes in this film than they did in some of those old movie serials. His wrist watch becomes a very valuable weapon in his arsenal. And not only does 007 have to deal with human predators, Moore has to both play tag with some alligators and nearly swim with some hungry sharks.

Live And Let Die got an Academy Award nomination. The title song written by Paul and Linda McCartney became one of the biggest songs to come from a Bond film. It lost however to the Barbra Streisand classic title song, The Way We Were in 1973.

Because it introduced Roger Moore as 007 to the movie going public, Live And Let Die has an enduring significance in film history. But even if it were not a milestone film, Live And Let Die is one of the best of James Bond films to come out with any actor playing 007.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Roger Moore's best

Author: freemantle_uk from United Kingdom
23 November 2008

After Sean Connery left the Bond Franchise for good (I do not count Never Say Never Again), the series was in need for a new lead actor. They were many candidates, including Burt Reynolds, Michael Billington and Robert Wagner. They was even talk about casting an unknown, someone who had serviced in the army or navy, but that idea never went anywhere. It was Roger Moore who had found fame through the television series the Saint. Moore was a different type of Bond, making the character more comedic and the plots became sillier under his reign. I'm not a fan of his style of Bond, leading to some bad films like Moonraker. However, Live and Let Die was a good film and a good start to Moore's career as Bond.

Live and Let Die starts with the murder of three British agents investigating the Prime Minister of San Monique (a fictional country in the Caribbean) and his links to New York gangster Mr. Big. Bond is sent by M to New York to investigate and Felix Leiter is assigned to help. When he arrives into the city Mr. Big sends an assassin to kill Bond, before all his people monitor his movement. When Bond meets Big in the Harlam he also meets his psychic, Solitaire, who can predict the future and see events far away using Tarot Cards. When Bond escapes he goes to San Monique and finds out that the Dr. Kananga, the Prime Minister was growing Poppy Flowers and then supplied it to Mr. Big who made it into Herion and sold it in the US. As well, Solitaire was attracted to Bond, and Bond, is also on a little personal mission. However, her powers are linked to her virginity, and with Bond around, it won't be round for long. Bond and Solitaire team up and go to New Orleans and working with Felix to stop Mr. Big and Dr. Kananga.

One of the things that I like about Live and Let Die is that plot is realistic, it's hardly out of the realms of possibility. It could easily happen. As well the action is non-stop, and with very enjoyable scenes, from the boat chase in Louisiana, to all the fights, to the fight at the end of the film. They is sadly no Q in this film, but Bond does have a gadget, a magnetic watch, something that isn't unrealistic. As well, whilst this film is light hearted, it's not campy, and most of the jokes work. Humour isn't overplayed or substitutes action, which is what Bond is all about. This film also has a good villains, which is important to all good Bond films, who has some very good henchmen. It is also pretty violence for a PG, so it would be advisable to not let young children watch this film. Finally they is a very good song performed by Paul McCarthey.

However, there is negative aspects to the film. It is surreal, which is basically weird for a Bond film; whilst I think most of the time it just be faked by the villains, they are others which don't work, like the dancing at the funeral in the beginning of the film. The film is heavily influenced by blaxploitation, which in itself not bad, is felt to be a little forced. It also shows how bad 70s fashion was. The film has been criticised for its portrayal of Voodooism, focusing on negative stereotypes. As well, at times the film is borderline racist and is they is only one black face who was a good guy. As well, I did not like the character of the Louisanian sheriff played by Clifton James, who was only in the film for comedic relief. I can accept it in this film, but there was no need to re-introduce him in The Man With the Golden Gun.

This is, as I said is Moore's best Bond, and it tries to be a down to earth in the scale of the villains plot. It has good action and this should have been the way that Moore's Bond should have gone, and not the campy route which it ended up taking, i.e. The Man With the Golden Gun.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Wow! What a Comeback!

Author: Elswet from .: Fiendish Writings in the Dark :.
27 April 2008

This is Roger Moore's first attempt as Bond, James Bond, and I must say that he is at home in Bond's shoes from the first moment. This was fantastic! Yaphet Kotto is Mr. Big, a nefarious gangster, drug runner, and Voodoo Priest in this Bond stylized blaxploitation film.

Filmed primarily in New Orleans, one can view our beloved NOLA as she once was, complete with tenetiary decor. This was a beautiful installment, actually. Moore is a smooth operator who isn't afraid to take a hit, plays the Cassanova aspect of Bond's character quite aptly, yet shines equally as well in the venue of the high-speed actioner. I think the franchise has found its Bond.

This story actually drew me as well as Moore's perpetration of it. The story is interesting, well fleshed out, and executed with a great panache. I really enjoyed this one. Better than any of the Connery installments, actually. And here I had a preconceived notion that Connery's Bond would be the best. Hmm...

It rates an 8.8/10 from...

the Fiend :.

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