This article contains lots and lots of spoilers for Under The Lake.
Under The Lake may not be the Dalek-filled continuity fest of the last couple of weeks, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t set our geek senses tingling. Here’s everything we were able to spot, from the obvious references to the slightly tenuous connections, from this week’s episode...
Under The Lake is a perfect example of what’s commonly referred to as a ‘base under siege’ story. These were a staple of the classic series, particularly during the Patrick Troughton era, not least because they meant the ever-stretched production team could save on the set budget. The first proper base-under-siege tale was William Hartnell’s final story, The Tenth Planet, »
For many, Tomorrow Never Dies is the forgotten middle child of the Brosnan era. Neither as loved as Goldeneye, nor reviled as Die Another Day, and it doesn’t have Christmas Jones. A muscular, accomplished outing that certainly deserves the prefix 'action' before any mention of 'thriller', Tomorrow Never Dies is the moment Brosnan hit his stride and simultaneously fell over. Great chases, hissable villains and one of the brightest of Bond’s flames in Paris Carver keep this viewer happy. The over-explosive climax and reluctance to experiment hint at trouble ahead.
The villain: I think Rupert’s gonna sue somebody… The antipodean qualities of megalomaniac media mogul Elliot Carver have only grown more pronounced over time. He’s a fine villain in his own right, with that fine »
This article contains spoilers for Goldeneye.
Goldeneye: a mostly triumphant return after an extended absence. Far from perfect but its flaws are overwhelmed by the sheer brio of the whole thing, especially once former Bond bestie Alec Trevelyan finally shows face. The reliance on gadgets is just about right (the exploding pen got a Skyfall namecheck) and the action is reliably entertaining. At least provided you can enjoy a tank chase through Moscow - which this writer certainly can. Probably the most loved of the Brosnan Bonds, although arguably Tomorrow Never Dies is a more coherent film (we'll be coming to that one next, of course). But this one had a lot riding on it. After six years it was do or die - »
Even though we have three more long months before the release of the next Bond film, Spectre, people are already buzzing about who will sing the film's theme song. It's going to be tough to beat Adele's Oscar-winning song "Skyfall," but we're sure whoever lands the gig will do a spectacular job. Bond-tune buffs Adrian Daub and Charlie Kronengold list off their best guesses in this post originally featured on Oxford University Press's blog. Image Source: Columbia Pictures Now's the moment to be a fan of the Bond songs. Spectre, the new film, comes out this November. That means we'll hear an official unofficial leak of the title song sometime this Summer. Everybody's been guessing who the singer is. Twitter says it'll be Sam Smith or Lana Del Rey. Sam Smith says it isn't him and claims that he "heard Ellie Goulding was going to do it." The Telegraph »
'Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation': Tom Cruise. 'Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation': Tom Cruise, the last action hero There are two impossible missions in the latest Mission: Impossible. The first involves Chechen terrorists, political assassinations, the Vienna Opera House, and a car that unlocks when the user places his hand on the driver's side window (Detroit, get on that). The other impossible mission, one that is not only accepted and completed, but conquered and victoriously ground into dust, is proving that 53-year old Tom Cruise is still an action star. As Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation demonstrates with cruel ease, Cruise isn't just an action hero. In the post-movie star age, he is, with apologies to a certain Austrian bodybuilder whose drawing power is all but terminated, the last action hero. What makes him thus is not just his supreme confidence, compact good looks, and million dollar smile. The camera has »
- Mark Keizer
8 coolest things you didn't spot in the Spectre trailer
22 best and worst Bond theme songs ranked
Why it could be them: No stranger to movie soundtracks, Goulding has lent tunes to everything from About Time to The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Fifty Shades of Grey. Her ethereal voice would certainly add an interesting flavour to Spectre, and Sam Smith certainly seems to think she has it in the bag.
Most Bondian track: 'My Blood'
Why it could be them: The 007 producers successfully brought back director Sam Mendes »
To mark the occasion, we've gone back through every single 007 song to find out which ones are earworms and which need their 00 status revoked. A quick point to note: we've discounted instrumentals so the opening credits pieces from Dr No and On Her Majesty's Secret Service are not on the list.
The first and only duet in the entire Bond theme back catalogue, on paper this sounded great but what emerged was a sludgy, lifeless and unremarkable track that went in one ear and out the other.
Compounding the horror of her on-screen cameo in this stinker of a film is Madonna's »
So this is the anti-Bond. Stripped of the requisite wit and mischief. Short of temper, heavy of touch. The SPECTREs of yore replaced by a drugs cartel. World domination downgraded to a heroin monopoly. Glamour smothered by grit. Joy drowned in the bloodshed. The icon of British cinema reduced to an American cop show – MI6 Vice, Hawaii 007 – timeless style swamped by the vulgarity and cash of the late-1980s, a case of ‘Sayonara, Mr Bond’ and everything you stand for. Derivative, needlessly violent, no identity, no soul – it’s just Not Bond, dammit! All nonsense, of course. The open-minded know this brutal, brilliant outing is about as good as the series can get.
The Villain: Franz Sanchez is unquestionably the great forgotten villain of the franchise. He possesses all the vital characteristics: charm, »
This one's strong, if uneven. The Living Daylights has a lot going for it, not least a lean, sharkish Timothy Dalton, tight of smile and cold of eye. Other strengths include a plot that actually goes places (even if they aren’t always the right ones), a great soundtrack, a palpably menacing hitman and the enjoyably retro prominence of the Cold War. All well and good. However, the central villains are a weakness, neither really working alone or as a duo. The girl is admirable but a little trying. The pace sometimes flags and the stakes never rise. Despite a standout fight aboard an aeroplane (as good as Bond gets) the film never quite takes off.
The Villains: A three-in-one deal. Never a great sign: quality is rarely offered in quantity. Georgi Koskov is a cheerful, »
Roger Moore bows out as James Bond 007, in A View To A Kill. It's a film with a few problems...
This one's an unworthy last hurrah for Sir Rog. Yet such is life. Received wisdom pegs A View To A Kill as a lacklustre final outing in which an inspired song, villain and Grace Jones are smothered by slack plotting, a not-at-his-best Moore, weak characters and a general sense of weariness. Received wisdom is a terrible thing. But occasionally it has a point.
The Villain: To waste one great villain on a rubbish film may be classed as unfortunate. To waste a second is damned careless. Max Zorin is Exhibit B to counter the hoary old adage that a Bond film is measured by its antagonist. Zorin is fresh, vibrant, energetic – the inverse of the film he terrorises. He’s played by a Hollywood legend in his prime: good for the character, »
So does this count? Never Say Never Again stirs many arguments by shaking up the official order, splitting fans on the issue of its legitimacy. Ruins pub quiz questions such as ‘How many actors have played M?’ due to the inevitable argument whether Edward Fox should be numbered. Put such issues aside and enjoy what remains: a sly, witty semi-pastiche that doesn’t attempt to recapture past glories but can easily hold its own alongside Diamonds Are Forever and Octopussy. And with much less swimming than Thunderball.
The Villain: Ignore Emilo: Maximillian Largo is his own maniac. Short, tubby, lanky blond hair receding, Largo is Draco Malfoy gone to seed. Easily visualised shuffling around Comic Con, accompanied by Mr Kidd and the reformed Jaws. Yet Largo is one of the film’s strengths. »
We've arrived at Roger Moore's penultimate Bond. But isn't it about time somebody fought Octopussy's corner?
After the comedown of For Your Eyes Only, the series is back on a high. A very good-natured, occasionally thrilling escapade that boasts an impressive roster of villains, a finely developed heroine, unusually meaty roles for series stalwarts General Gogol and Q, a nuclear bomb and a gloriously stupid title. Yes, Roger Moore has aged to the point where counting the wrinkles is a legitimate distraction. And many valid criticisms can be levelled about plot and credibility. But the good outweighs, or certainly overwhelms, the bad in Octopussy. Still, he really should have quit after this one.
The Villain: Kamal Khan got his break by winning the talent competition Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Singing Superstar - and that was just the beginning. 2012 hit Ishk Sufiana launched Khan into stardom and he bagged »
By: Jay Dyer
Ian Fleming’s James Bond is one of the most recognizable and successful characters in modern popular culture. The novels have sold over 100 million copies, and the film franchise is the second most successful in history, having been recently displaced by the Harry Potter series. For most readers and viewers, 007 is merely a Western pop icon. However, there is much more at work in the novels and films than appears on the surface. In fact, there are deeper undercurrents, themes, symbols, and messages that operate as psychological warfare propaganda and an in-depth semiotic analysis of the novels and films yields an interpretation that confirms this thesis. Much has been written on the subject of Ian Fleming’s James Bond. From Umberto Eco’s older essay “Narrative Structures in Fleming” to Christoph Linders’ modern collections The James Bond Phenomenon and Revisioning 007: James Bond and Casino Royale, there »
- Jay Dyer
Since 1962, the James Bond franchise has come to define the spy genre, for good or ill. More broadly, every thriller and action film that comes out now either uses them as inspiration, or attempts to ignore or re-work the tropes that have come to be associated with the series.
Coming off the release of Kingsman: The Secret Service, and with the release of a new Bond film this year, now seems like the perfect time to take a look at a sample of the films which have been inspired by James Bond — either as homages, parodies or reactions.
The Ipcress File (1965)
Produced by James Bond producer Harry Saltzman as a more grounded alternative to the largesse of Bond, The Ipcress File is more concerned with the intricacies of real spy-work — the endless paperwork, »
There's a good case to be made for this being the silliest Bond of them all, but Moonraker's still a lot of fun...
Well, we’ve come a long, long way since From Russia With Love. Moonraker: a film that redefined the possibilities of the Bond franchise if only by sheer scale of stupidity. The space bits are relatively by-the-numbers (other than being in space). However, the script was probably written in crayon. Chases happen without explanation, people randomly bump into each other, the utterly implausible is presented as mundane. Purists think of Istanbul and weep. But treat the whole thing as a comedy – perhaps a gentle spoof – and you’ll actually enjoy yourself. A plot-hole drinking game will get everyone plastered.
The Villain: Weirdly good. The master of the dry putdown – “James Bond. You defy my attempts to devise an amusing death for you” – Hugo Drax almost steals the film. »
The Simpsons has a long history of peppering its stories with pop culture references, and some of the show’s finest gags stem from the world of cinema. These have ranged from the briefest of quotes, to full on shot-for-shot parodies and extended episode-long homages.
Most striking in trying to put this list together was the sheer volume of movie references there are to choose from. In pretty much any given episode of The Simpsons, there are at least a couple, with nods to James Bond, 2001: A Space Odyssey and the work of Alfred Hitchcock proving three of the most regular candidates. The tributes to numerous great horror movies in the show’s Treehouse Of Horror episodes could have been used to fill this list all on their own. »
Code number 007 is on the mind of fans as they anticipate the new Bond film which is expected to be released this year.
Commander James Bond, Cmg, Rn is a fictional character created by novelist and British journalist Ian Fleming in 1952. Bond is a Secret Service agent who is a composite based upon a number of commandos known by Ian Fleming during his service in the Naval Intelligence Division during World War II. The character’s name was appropriated by Fleming from American ornithologist James Bond. The code number 007 is from one of the key achievements of British naval intelligence, breaking the German diplomatic code in World War I.
Fleming’s fiction character appeared in a series of twelve novels, two short story collections, a number of continuation novels, and over twenty Bond films. Spanning more than half of a century, there have been several actors who played James Bond on the big screen. »
- Gary Collinson
Bond producer Michael G. Wilson is making a bold claim telling Empire the opening sequence to the new James Bond movie Spectre, which takes place during the Day of the Dead celebration in Mexico, will be "the biggest opening sequence we've ever done, maybe the biggest sequence we've ever done". "The whole vision that director Sam Mendes has come up with is very exciting and amazing," Wilson added. "We've got 1500 extras in Day of the Dead costumes and make up and we've occupied the centre of Mexico City for days. The only thing that's come close to it was putting on the carnival in Rio in Moonraker see video, and I think this is a much bigger operation." So what does this opening entailc Well, according to Empire, we'll get "exploding buildings, a pulse-quickening foot chase through the Day Of The Dead parade and a fight inside a helicopter, which »
- Brad Brevet
Late last week, the first trailer for "Spectre" dropped, and it was a lot of moody lighting and people talking in hushed, ominous tones. But don't worry, the actual movie is going to bring the requisite ambition we now expect from a franchise that kissed the billion dollar mark with "Skyfall." You'll know it right from the opening moments of the movie, set during the Day Of The Dead in Mexico, where lensing is currently underway. It will be "the biggest opening sequence we've ever done, maybe the biggest sequence we've ever done," producer Michael G. Wilson told Empire, adding, "We've got 1500 extras in Day Of The Dead costumes and make up and we've occupied the centre of Mexico City for days. The only thing that's come close to it was putting on the carnival in Rio in 'Moonraker,' and I think this is a much bigger operation. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
After letting the sky fall when it crum-balled to the tune of a billion dollars at the global box office, Spectre may be the most anticipated James Bond movie since the last one. Daniel Craig's fourth feature as 007 won't arrive in UK cinemas until October, but the response to the teaser trailer released over the weekend has been very positive.
Four is hardly a magic number for Bond actors. Sean Connery's fourth outing was the less-than-stellar Thunderball, Roger Moore's was the all-too-interstellar Moonraker and Pierce Brosnan closed out his four-movie tenure with the infamously poor Die Another Day.
That makes Craig the fourth actor to rack up four turns as Bond, and if you're superstitious about this sort of thing, maybe that's why this looks to be the combo breaker. »
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