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Licence to Kill (1989)

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James Bond goes rogue and sets off to unleash vengeance on a drug lord who tortured his best friend, a C.I.A. agent, and left him for dead and murdered his bride after he helped capture him.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Q
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President Hector Lopez (as Pedro Armendariz)
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Storyline

James Bond is on possibly his most brutal mission yet. Bond's good friend, Felix Leiter, is left near death, by drug baron Franz Sanchez. Bond sets off on the hunt for Sanchez, but not everyone is happy. MI6 does not feel Sanchez is their problem and strips Bond of his license to kill making Bond more dangerous than ever. Bond gains the aid of one of Leiter's friends, known as Pam Bouvier and sneaks his way into the drug factories, which Sanchez owns. Will Bond be able to keep his identity secret, or will Sanchez see Bond's true intentions? Written by simon

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His bad side is a dangerous place to be. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for action violence and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

14 July 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

License to Kill  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$32,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$34,667,015 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In Italy, title was "Vendetta Privata" (Personal Revenge or Private Revenge), not following the translation, because the first Bond film (Dr. No (1962)) was titled "Licenza di Uccidere", the translation of this film's title. Sweden had the same problem: Dr. No had been "Agent 007 med rätt att döda" (Agent 007 with a license to kill), so "Tid för hämnd" (Time for revenge) was used for this movie. Other countries used Personal Revenge (France); The Cancelled Licence (Japan); and With A Right To Kill (Norway). Brazil, Finland, Croatia, Portugal and Spain simply translated the actual title. See more »

Goofs

Bond jumps from the plane to the top of the speeding tanker truck. Sanchez fires a burst of machine gun fire at him from a moving car, more than 10 feet below. As Bond stands upright, the bullets ricochet at his feet as they miss him. The bullets would have to rise and fall in a 90 degree arc to accomplish this. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
AWACS radar operator: We have a mid-course deviation. Target heading 036, 126 miles, bearing 062, Havana VOR.
Voice of DEA agent: He's landing at Cray Key. Advise Key West Drug Enforcement.
AWACS radar operator: Roger, sir. AWACS to Key West. Key West Drug Enforcement, please come in.
Voice of DEA agent: If they hurry, they just might be able to grab the bastard.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the tail end of the credits: "James Bond Will Return" See more »

Connections

Featured in Inside Q's Lab (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Licence to Kill
Music by Narada Michael Walden
Lyrics by Walter Afanasieff
Performed by Gladys Knight
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
I Don't Understand People's Reaction To the Violence In This Film
16 April 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Sure, it's not the best 007 film, and Dalton is not the best Bond (that would be Brosnan or Connery, leaning toward Connery for the better films), but the idea that anyone would be appalled by the violence in this movie is, err, appalling. Did people forget that in DR. NO Connery plugs six bullets into Prof. Dent? Or breaks the neck of No's security guard on the island? Or that Quarrel is graphically roasted alive by the dragon? In FRWL, people are strangled and stabbed and beaten and shot throughout the entire movie! Had no one actually read Fleming's LIVE AND LET DIE novel? Bond is a Secret Agent with a Licence To Kill, hence the title of this movie! At the time, I was very impressed with this movie, and still find it enjoyable to watch though it hasn't aged well. The dialog is rough at times and so is some of the acting, though it had the best cast in a 007 film in dog's years! The costuming is a joke, the drug story shop-worn, and 007's 'resignation' scene, what should have been the first truly dramatic moment of the entire movie, is treated as though the movie starred Steven Segal! Also, in a series where music plays an integral part, this movie just didn't come through. Knight's title theme has a rousing under-rhythm, but overall it's just a modern 'Thunderball', and Kamen's non-score makes me feel like I'm watching a 'Lethal Weapon' movie. When it ends and the most memorable music in the film is the Mex-mariachi music from the trucks' speakers, you know the music director f'd up big time! How come that wasn't on the soundtrack? Heh-he.

Still there are plenty high points thanks to the EON team: David Hedison as the best Felix Lieter ever, Carey Lowell as the best Bond Girl since Melina Havelock, Q's extended presence, the camera-gun, the Hong Kong narcotics plot twist, and the credible action stunts (007 overtaking the drug money plane is breathless from the moment he harpoon's one of Sanchez' men, pun intended)! Seeing James Bond actually get hurt at the end of the movie was a real stunner though! In the end, it's not great Bondage, but it's an overlooked cut above much of it's competition.


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Why Did People Not Accept the 'Angry Bond' in '89 ? mistermycroft
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