Sunday, November 15, 2015

Sunday Best: Top 5 Bond Films of All Time

picture by ClaraDon

In honor of the latest (and possibly last) Daniel Craig James Bond film, I thought I would rank to the 5 best James Bond movies of all time.

5.  Never Say Never Again

This is not an official Bond film because of some legal copyright issues.  In fact, this movie is actually a remake of the earlier film Thunderball.  But something about this Sean Connery swan song works so well for me.  There is a charm to Bond getting older but refusing to acknowledge it.  I love the video game torture machine.  It also has my favortie James Bond line "It's against service policy to give endorsments."

4.  Goldeneye

This is not a smart movie.  Cinemasins did an excellent job of eviserating the many story holes.  But the movie has 2 very important things going for it.
a.  Pierce Brosnan - he was a breath of fresh air coming from the super serious Timothy Dalton (I actually like Dalton, but his bond was seething with emotion in a way we were not used to at the time).  Brosnan brought the charm and the action.
b.  Great Directing - Martin Campbell made the sequences so exciting that you overlooked how silly much of it was.

3. For Your Eyes Only

This is the best Roger Moore Bond film.  Coming off of the silly Moonraker, Bond went back to real Cold War espionage.  The skiing sequence is laden with an overly-80's score, but is still a great deal of fun.  And I still am riveted as I watch Bond climb the mountain to the bad guy's lair.

2. From Russia with Love

Before Bond was purely cemented in the action genre, this movie fit more into the mold of suspense and intrigue.  In fact, much of it feels almost Hitchcockian in how it raises the tension without having to do flashy action.  To be sure there are some great sequences like the boat chase and the train fight.  But this one is low on flash and high on substance.

1. Casino Royale

I know that many Bond fans, especially fans of classic Bond, would find it almost blasphemous that I would put this Bond as number 1.  But it is, without a doubt, the best of the series.  It has the best action sequence with the parcorps chase in Madagascar.  And the rest of the action sequences are superb.  Daniel Craig embodies the terrifying killer instict of Bond in his relentless agression.  And while the plot can get convoluted, it holds your attention until the end.  It is a shame that the other Daniel Craig Bond films haven't lived up to his first outing, but I think that this is the one he will be remembered for.

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