Octopussy is the best Bond movie. Discuss.

For years, I’ve held that Octopussy is the best Bond movie of the entire series and since it’s on TNN right now, I thought I’d start a thread and explain why.

Basically, it has everything a Bond movie should have and it executes those things perfectly. Let me show you:

It has:

  1. An exciting opening sequence with what I call a “Bondpossible” stunt that only he could perform(the plane flying in and out the hull as it closes). It ends with a funny line before the credits.

  2. It ends it’s opening sequence with a funny quip, “Fill 'er up, please.”

  3. Great song. One of the best Bond songs in the canon.

  4. Many funny lines spread throughout that do not take away from the movie. “It’s all in the wrists,” is my personal fav.

  5. A fun, memorable evil side-kick. The turban guy, who can crush dice into dust. He is used well, too.

  6. An amazing chase sequence with the tennis raquets, a guy falling on a spiked bed, and much, much more. It’s funny and thrilling.

  7. A fun side-event, the yo-yo sawblade guy. Very cool.

  8. Roger Moore as a clown. Not a necessity(thank goodness) for every Bond movie, but having Bond in a very “non-Bond” situation is very fun and a good thing to have.

  9. A nuclear bomb set to explode seconds(in this case, with 0.00 time on the clock) after Bond disarms it.

  10. A stellar final action sequence, this time with Bond fighting outside a plane, with the Turban guy(and pushing him off!).

  11. A great post-story love scene. “In…Out…In…Out…” say the rowers on the boat.

  12. A great final line. “Oh, James!!!”

Now, the Bond girl is not one of the most attractive, but she has a central role and can act. Maud Adams is one of the most memorable Bond girls, even though she isn’t “hot”.

Great movie. Now only if Roger Moore had quite here instead of making the dreadful View To A Kill.

What do you think makes a great Bond movie and what is your pick for the one that fulfills it?

In case you are wondering, here are(sigh, IMHO) the best and worst Bond movies from each Bond.

Sean Connery
Best: Goldmember
Worst: Dr. No

George Lazenby:
Uh, well, nevermind.

Roger Moore:
Best: Octopussy
Worst: A View To A Kill

Timothy Dalton:
Best(though bad): Living Daylights
Worst(even worse): Licence to Kill

Pierce Brosnan:
Best: Godeneye(though I love Tomorrow Never Dies as well)
Worst: Die Another Day(by far his worst, 4th from the bottom overall).

It is so sad that the atrocity that was “Goldmember (Austin Powers 3)” has come to be confused with a classic Bond flick like “Goldfinger.”


:smack: :smack: :smack: :smack: :smack: :smack: :smack:

If you knew how big a James Bond fan I was, you would be able to appreciate the magnitude of a mistake like that.

I am a huge moron.

I can’t believe it. I have never been such an idiot.

Maud Adams not hot? On what planet?

As someone who became a big fan of Fleming’s books before I began to be a real Bond movie buff, I detest the double-taking, smirking buffoon Roger Moore turned the character into. For a real good sense of the way Fleming originally wrote the character, watch Timothy Dalton carefully in “License To Kill”. Sure, the story was soft (it’s basically a two-hour drama based on one chapter of “Live And Let Die”) and the major villain is more suitable for a Steven Seagal flick, but Dalton really captured the essence of the character.

Now that I’ve admitted to being in the vast minority by liking Dalton as Bond, let me say my fave Bond movie was “From Russia With Love.” Connery was excellent as Bond, the best overall movie Bond by far, the story was very close to Fleming’s original, and it translated well to the screen.

I also really enjoyed “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” It had some great moments, including the opening sequence where Lazenby beats up the bad guys and saves the girl, only to have her drive off without so much as a “thank you.” He quips, as we fade to the opening credits, “This never happened to the other guy.” I love that sort of self-deprecating humour in a movie franchise!

Moore’s best effort, IMO, was “The Spy Who Loved Me.” It was over-the-top enough for Moore’s take on the character, but still story driven and he still wasn’t so old as to look like a dirty old lecher every time he came on to one of the hotties on screen.

I still think Dalton was severely hampered by weak scripts. I would have liked to see him in a Bond flick with a decent story.

As much as I like Brosnan as an actor, I hate him as James Bond. He’s too surly to be likable. His emotions seem to run the gamut from frowning anger to sneering disgust to teeth-clenched, squinting obstinance. Hey, Pierce, Bond is supposed to be a man of action, not a man of misery! Nevertheless, I generally quite enjoyed “The World Is Not Enough.” Finally they were letting the characters drive the story again, rather than just jumping from one long action sequences to the next with as little plot as possible. “Die Another Day” was a step in the wrong direction.

“Octopussy” blew goats, IMO. But not as many as “View To A Kill.”

I’m sorry, but I gotta disagree violently with the OP. Octopussy was a major disappointment, especially because of what it coulda been, and because of the history leading up to it.

Ever since Ian Fleming’s death the movies had been moving further and further from Fleming’s originals, despite keeping the same names. The last time a film even came close to resembling the book it was nominally based on was On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. Moore’s interpretation of the character was a lot broader and less sexy than Connery’s, and it didn’t help that the producers were pushing more toward slapstick and juvenile plots, culminating in the Star Wars-copying idiocy of Moonraker. Good FX, really BAD plot.

Then they decided to try to recapture the old Bond with For Your Eyes Only. The gadgetry was down, the science-fiction plots abolished, and they went, for inspiration, back to two Fleming stories: For Your Eyes Only and * Risico*, both in the anthology For Your Eyes Only. It was GREAT. The best Bond in years, and my choice for the best Moore Bond film, by far.

Octopussy was the next Bond outing, using the samke team and same director. They based the story, it was pretty clear, on the two Fleming short stories again – Octopussy and Property of a Lady (both in the anthology volume Octopussy). There was reason for high hopes.

It started out good (despite the hi-jinks of a typical Bond stunt pre-trailer opening), and the first third or so wasn’t too bad. But then we got into the old Moore slapstick and idiocy, culminating in a raid on an all-woman island of female warriors (with Q piloting a hot-air balloon!!) and such nonsense. The final comedown had Bond dressed as a clown. Even the climactic fight on the outside of a plane in flight couldn’t make up for it all.

The next outing, A View to a Kill, didn’t even try to be anything more than Moore at his worst. It was also his last, with Dalton taking over the reins for the next film, a return to form in The Living Daylights, another adaptation from a Fleming story, done pretty straight.

And the real plot of Octopussy seemed to have come from Frederick Forsyth’s The Fourth Protocol, which came out about the same time. I don’t know who ripped who off, or if it was unfortunate timing.
Octopussy w3as particularly bad because For Your Eyes Only and the beginning of Octopussy had raised our expectations, only to dash them. Yecchhh.

Maud Adams, of course, was the only Bond-babe to appear in 2 Bond movies, previously getting slapped around in a Hong Kong hotel room in Man with the Golden Gun and ending up killed in the kickboxing arena by Scaramanga and/or Nicknack.

Octopussy is quite great but it’s no Spy Who Loved Me. Still, it’s up towards the top of the list of Bond flicks, maybe second or third best. Slightly better than Live and Let Die.

Basically I favor all the Moore movies over the rest (except for the last reels of Moonraker and VTAK which are rather dumb). That can be chalked up to my generation.

Worst Bond movie by far - Die Another Day, which I feel heralds the imminent demise of every last thing that’s cool about those movies.

Not true, as any Bond fan knows. Martine Beswick appearecin Dr. No, From Russia with Love, and Thunderball.

Eunice Gayson appeared in Dr. No and From Russia with Love.

There are others, and note as well those that appeared in non-Eon Bond films as well as the Eon productions, like Ursula Andress.

Geez, and how can I forget Miss Moneypenny, Lois Maxwell?

Pardon my shallowness in the company of so many fine observations and thoughtful analyses, but I must say all the same that in my opinion no Bond movie without Sean Connery can claim the #1 spot, by default.

Hafta love Connery just for the way he says “Pushhy” in “Pussy Galore”

I didn’t see that many similarities, other than a Soviet nuclear device being smuggled into a U.S. base and detonted. That in itself was a realistic scenario during the Cold War, so it can’t be seen as some sort of fictional innovation on anyone’s part. I don’t dislike Octopussy as much as some, but I thought The Fourth Protocol was a better movie.

I also agree with Dread Pirate Jimbo on what he likes in Bond films. From Russia with Love is also my favorite, followed closely by Thunderball. The latter almost entirely because of the voluptuous presence of Luciana Paluzzi as Bondgirl Fiona Volpe. No one has ever topped her, in my opinion. Not even Ursula Andress.

I am a serious Bond fan, but I don’t have the heavy aversion to Moore as Bond that some people have. I approach his films with different expectations. It was never a possibility that he would play Bond the way Connery did; their styles as actors were completely incompatible, and Connery originated the character. I think Moore works on his own level.
What’s annoying to me though is that with Brosnan the series’ producers had a great shot at making the character fresh and relevant to the real world again, a la Connery. They instead went for the Moore approach. World events being what they are, I’m not sure this approach is itself relevent, or even entertaining, anymore.

That’s what I meant, of course. It was a realistic scenario, but no one used it before, and then suddenly it shows up in two different works at almost exactly the same time. (And then not used again) I’d say the idea wasn’t exactly a common one floating around.

I’d chalk this up to a simple phenomenon which isn’t as rare as you might think. There is an odd ocurrence in Hollywood whereby studios or producers get wind of what others are doing and try to get their own version out the door first. The result is two movies with virtually identical plots made at about the same time. This is how we got both “Armageddon” and “Deep Impact,” (both have Earth’s existence threatened by asteroids) and “Like Father, Like Son” with “Vice Versa” coming out a year later. (Both of THOSE have a father and son switching bodies through some mystical means.)
Both filmmaking teams are using similar source material, but not that similar, or else someone would get sued. But it’s not the same as one film “ripping off” another.

I’m not sure I understand you. Flemming died in 1965 and Octopussy was published 1966. Forsyth’s debut with Day of the Jackal was in 1971. If we’re talking movies, Octopussy was released 1983, whereas The fourth Protocol came 1987. I didn’t even know it was a movie, so I had to check realease year on IMdB.

and I don’t understand * you*.

It has nothing to do with Fleming, since that aspect isn’t in any of his works. The date of The Day of the Jackal is also irrelevant – it has nothing to do with that (And DooJ wan’t his first book – **The Biafra Story ** was.) The date of the film The Fourth Protocol is irrelevant, too, since the book came out a few years earlier (and the discussion of Hollywood discussion is irrelevant, too – this was in the book). My recollection was that Octopussy the movie and The Fourth Protocol the book came out about the same time.

Why does nobody acknowledge that the best Bond film of all time is Casino Royale?

And why couldn’t the Bond franchisers stick with the continuity presented in that story and leave him dead?

I actually saw Octopussy relatively recently on an airplane trip and was surprised by how enjoyable it was–nowhere near as good as Connery at his best, but better than most Moore outings. As for the OP:

  1. Not-bad opening but can’t compare with, say Moore’s TSWLM
  2. :rolleyes:
  3. I agree, the song is actually pretty good in a cheesy way, and it’s used to good effect in the score
  4. I can’t say anything really stood out in that department–I thought the sight gags (like sliding down the bannister) were better.
  5. After Jaws, oh yeah. Nice exit, too. :slight_smile:
  6. The funniest thing about the tennis raquet is the presence of tennis star Vijay Amritraj as, well, Vijay. I actually think the train sequence is better–low frills but exciting.
  7. Agreed. Improbably, irresistably nasty.
  8. The circus business is handled rather cleverly overall, and the clown make-up isn’t used for cheap laughs (fortunately).
  9. With the little knobs that pop out so you can see how close they all came. Well done.
  10. I had forgotten about the plane business until I rewatched it. Although chasing it on the horse was absurd, straddling the plane in mid-flight and duking it out was exciting (though that parting jump was also, uh, far-fetched).
  11. Maud Adams is fine, and so is Kristina Wayborn.
  12. :rolleyes:

There’s a level of absurdity that you have to accept with Roger in the lead, which is why I don’t mind silly business like the female assault on the compound–plus we do get to see Q in the field (the only time, IIRC). Also, Louis Jourdan is perfectly slimy as a EuroNasty. Maybe my favorite Moore, though From Russia with Love still gets my vote for Best Bond Ever.

Maybe I’ve not paid as much attention as I needed to the movie, but I always found certain parts of Octopussy’s plot confusing. I can understand the manaical Soviet General wanting to explode a nuclear bomb and start WWIII, but I’ve never figured out what role the Faberge eggs and other jewels play.
So the Soviets were making the fakes and auctioning them off to bankroll the whole operation? Why did Kamal need to buy back the original in the early part of the film? Why was the Evil General shot by his own troops while trying to stop the train?
Sure, there have been more confusing plots coughLiving Daylightscough but I’ve always had a little trouble with this one.

CalMeacham. You brought up the ideas about Octopussy and the 4th protocol and similarities, without saying which media you were refering too. The movie Octopussy came out 1983. The 4th Protocol was published 1985. Forsyth might have seen the movie but the timing is not suspicious in any way.
Also, when you say “The real plot of Octopussy”, I for one assumed you meant the original plot, that is the book.
But it’s probably just me.