Digging Double Oh Seven: Diamonds Are Forever (1971)

After On Her Majesty’s Secret Service didn’t perform quite to what the producers wanted to, they wound up getting Sean Connery back for one more official James Bond movie (he’s in one more, but it’s not technically canon). And honestly, it’s a hard one to get ahold of. After seemingly killing the evil Blofeld in the beginning of the flick, Bond winds up hanging out in the States, specifically Las Vegas, which is kind of fun. But, I had a few problems with the movie. First off, I had trouble following it. To be fair to the movie, I was writing some stuff for MTV Geek at the time and not giving it my full attention, but I still wasn’t quite sure what the hell the mission was. I know that he continually runs into Jill St. John’s Tiffany Case and it turns out that Blofeld isn’t actually dead, he’s been posing as someone else in Vegas and someone’s building something that has to do with satellites and, of course, diamonds come into play, but there’s so many twists and characters hopping in and out of the movie that I really had trouble focusing on who was important and why.

I know I haven’t gotten into specifics about the Bond girls too much in the past, but I found the ones in Diamonds Are Forever to be incredibly lacking. There’s just something about Jill St. John that I don’t like. As soon as she was on screen I disliked her, especially with all her weird wig changing. Then there’s Plenty O’Toole (played by the gorgeous Lana Wood) who, as I mentioned is lovely, but is ridiculously dumb and annoying. She actually says “You handle those cubes like a monkey handles coconuts” at one point. Oi. The best of the bunch are Bambi and Thumper, two bodyguards who throw down with Bond and hold their own pretty damn well. They’re fantastic. I also liked how, early in the movie, Bond could tell exactly what brand of sherry he was drinking. It reminds me of a part of the Casino Royale novel where Bond talks about loving the finer things in life. I took that to mean that he loves the best of fine food and drink and automobile because his profession doesn’t lend itself to the emotional finer things in life (love, family, that kind of stuff). I got a hint of that in this movie.

It’s too bad because I really loved the beginning of this movie with a rage-filled and mostly unseen Bond roughing up anyone who might have some knowledge about his arch enemy Blofeld, whose goons killed his wife in the previous movie. I wish the movie had been all about that, the whole time, instead of faking us out with a faux Blofeld death early on, but oh well. Next up I’ve got Live and Let Die, the novel version of which I recently started and has the series’ first Roger Moore entry. Can’t wait!

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