After being somewhat lost during the previous Bond installment, Diamonds Are Forever, and wondering how new Bond Roger Moore would fare in the roll, I was dubious about how much I might enjoy Live And Let Die. Thankfully, I had a wonderful time watching this movie and not just because of my long and still standing crush of Bond girl Jane Seymour. This time around, Bond is sent after the head of a worldwide heroine operation that has also killed a number of Bond’s fellow agents named Mr. Big. This adventure takes him from his flat in London (super swank) to Harlem and New Orleans to the fictional country of San Monique. This movie has it all for a Bond fan like me: deformed henchmen, gorgeous ladies, integral-but-not-ridiculous gadgets, a plot that’s easy to follow but still with it’s share of twists and enough action to make me look away from my computer.
To that last point, there’s a few things I want to talk about. First off, the boat/car chase towards the end of the movie is amazingly fantastic. It’s funny that Moore dressed kind of like Steve McQueen from Bullit after these scenes because I think that boat chase does for boats what Bullit did for cars. It’s AWESOME. The only thing about it–and the whole movie really–that sucks is watching the awfully stereotypical southern cop spit and stutter his way through his scenes. In a movie full of potentially but not offensive scenes and situations, it’s the southerners that wind up getting it worst in this flick. There’s also a great fight at the end of the film between Bond and hook-handed villain Tee Hee on a train that’s reminiscent of the one from From Russia With Love. Now, Moore isn’t the most physical of Bonds, but he does pretty well in this scene which is rad because one of the fighters HAS A METAL HOOK HAND!
Speaking of Moore as Bond, I think he’s great. He might be a little old in the role, starting out older than any of the previous or later Bonds did, but he carries himself in such a smooth and sophisticated manor that I don’t mind him lacking when it comes to throwing fists. You get the feeling from watching him that he can handle himself pretty well with his wits and the tools given to him by his government. He’s also not hoodwinked by a pretty face which is good to see and once again bends a would be enemy towards the good side thanks to his masculine whiles (much like he did with Pussy Galore in Goldfinger).
There’s a lot of things in the movie that might seem goofy, like Bond hang-gliding off the back of a boat parasailing style (did they used to do that?), Tee Hee’s incredibly obvious fake metal hand and the mystical elements that surround the story, but I had a great time watching this flick and can’t wait to see what else Roger Moore can do. On that same note, I just started reading the novel that this movie was somewhat based on and hope to finish it soon (we’ll see, I am slow and there’s a lot going on in the coming weeks). I’ll discuss the similarities and differences when I finally finish. Oh, one last note, the Wings themesong is AWESOME.