Monday, 4 April 2016

Never Say Never Again (1983)

"Now you're on this, I hope we're going to have some gratuitous sex and violence."

And so we come to the second Bond film of 1983, and a very unofficial one. It has a sparkling Sean Connery who, though 53, is still younger than Roger Moore, and it also has the sole rights to Ernst Stavro Blofeld. Unfortunately it lacks the rights to an awful lot of things, including the rights to do anything other than a remake of Thunderball, the only Bond film up to this point that ice actively not enjoyed. So is it any good?

Well, actually, yes. It's certainly more humorous than any other Bond film but not, I think, to an excessive degree; it's a proper Bond film, not a spoof. Connery is on particularly fine form and the script has a lot of witty fun with what turns out to be a very loose remake.

The film takes advantage of having to recast roles, with Edward Fox giving us a grumpy new M while the new Q, "Algy", is a chirpy cockney whose department is much reduced. No fancy gadgets here. Kim Basinger makes a splendid Bond girl and it would have been quite, quite wrong if Max Von Sydow had never got to play Blofeld.

It's a very different Bond film and yes, the computer game sequence is dated and weird, but this is a perfectly fine Bond film.

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