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Topic: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Released in 1977, it was the 10th official movie in the series and the 3rd movie to feature Roger Moore as James Bond.  After the previous movie "Man with the Golden Gun" was considered the disappointment which resulted in the breaking up of Harry and Cubby, The Spy Who Loved Me was considered a big comeback for the series.  Many fans acclaim it to be the best film of the Roger Moore era and one of the best films in the series.

Pros:
Has a perfect balance of camp and seriousness
Has a perfect balance of spy and action
Showcases that Moore can do a serious Bond (such as XXX's boyfriend death confrontation)
The raid of Stromberg's base is memorable.
Represents detente very well, with Bond and XXX being symbols for their countries.
Jaws, one of the most iconic henchmen in the series
The amphibious car scenes. Water sequences are paced perfectly.
The scene of Q and his gadgets are full of laughs
Barbara Bach does a good job as Agent XXX
The movie concludes very nicely in its last 15 minutes

Cons:
Follows the Bond formula rigidly (although it does that very well)
Stromberg, while not bad, isn't up to the excellence of other villains in the series.

Overall Thoughts
In many ways it's the most perfect well-rounded films in the Bond series, filled with many of the best moments of the series.  The Moore era needed an answer to Connery era classics like Goldfinger and it got one.  The Spy Who Loved Me is also unique with regard to it's adventurous grandiosity while still holding many of the traditions we've come to expect from spy films in tact.

Last edited by Absolutely_Cart (19th Sep 2015 17:51)

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I personally cannot find any Flaws with TSWLM  ajb007/martini It was the first Bond of Moore's where he really came into his own.

1.On Her Majesties Secret Service 2.The Living Daylights 3.license To Kill 4.The Spy Who Loved Me 5.Goldfinger

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

For me, the flaws in TSWLM, aren't really flaws.  I can't find any bad moments.  It's more a matter of the good aspects of the movie not standing out as much as the great ones.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I petty much agree with AOS, TSWLM was  my first cinema Bond and it
Blew me away.  ajb007/heart  so I probably  can't give a reasonable argument against
It, as it would be like attacking part of my childhood.  ajb007/lol
Moore is in his element, at last the scripts are turning round to his light comedian
Skills. The action is top notch, good villain and locations, beautiful car and leading
Lady.  Jaws is a fantastic henchman scary in a few scenes.
  All in all SPY was another reboot and rejuvenation of the series, plenty of Money was
Spent and it shows. So as I've said, I'm a little biased towards it.  ajb007/wink

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Anyone who didn't love this movie?  We gotta get the other side of the coin in this discussion too.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Absolutely_Cart wrote:

the previous movie "Man with the Golden Gun" was considered the disappointment that broke the EON founders (Harry and Cubby) apart

Whoever considers that is very much mistaken.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I enjoyed MWGG but objectively speaking it was the least acclaimed of the first 3 Moore movies.

TSWLM was considered a big comeback in every sense.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Definitely in my top ten as well.. Definitely Moore's best outing.  ajb007/martini

Do you expect me to talk?

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Absolutely_Cart wrote:

Anyone who didn't love this movie?  We gotta get the other side of the coin in this discussion too.

Read this article for my views on the subject of TSWLM (mainly on the overtly contrived action sequences in the film):

http://www.thebondologistblog.blogspot. … eform.html

Last edited by Silhouette Man (16th Mar 2015 18:33)

Writer/Director @ The Bondologist Blog (TBB)
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"The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Pros:

•    It has a linear plot that makes sense (not the case with “Diamonds Are Forever” and “The Man With The Golden Gun” that preceded it)
•    It’s frequently very exciting
•    It has arguably the best pre-credits sequence of the entire series
•    Major Anya Amasova is a well-crafted, three-dimensional character (quite a relief after the idiotic Tiffany Case and Mary Goodnight)
•    The production design is stunning, as is the filming
•    Roger Moore is on top form
•    The acting is generally excellent, despite Barbara Bach struggling with a “Russian” accent
•    It introduces General Gogol, who would be an effective fixture of the eighties films
•    Jaws is genuinely terrifying
•    Most of the humour works very well
•    The score is excellent, with the title theme being one of the best in the series

Cons:

•    It’s a thinly disguised rewrite of “You Only Live Twice”
•    Stromberg’s plan is so ridiculous that it’s amazing anyone is willing to collaborate on it
•    Stromberg is a one-dimensional supervillain (fleshed out a bit in Christopher Wood’s accompanying book)
•    A couple of the jokes don’t work well at all

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Silhouette Man wrote:
Absolutely_Cart wrote:

Anyone who didn't love this movie?  We gotta get the other side of the coin in this discussion too.

Read this article for my views on the subject of TSWLM (mainly on the overtly contrived action sequences in the film):

http://www.thebondologistblog.blogspot. … eform.html

It would probably be better if you sum up your thesis in a few sentences for the purposes of this discussion.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Manxman wrote:

  It’s a thinly disguised rewrite of “You Only Live Twice”

Interesting.  In what way.  Don't half the films in the series confine to the Dr. No/Goldfinger formula, rather than anything specifically YOLT did. Just the nuclear missiles plan?  Because that would be more akin to Thunderball.

The nuclear submarine could be comparable to the YOLT battle-copter.  But what else am I missing?

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Absolutely_Cart wrote:

what else am I missing?

Benson covers this in his "James Bond Bedside Companion", or you might have a look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCisJExSWs4

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Absolutely_Cart wrote:
Manxman wrote:

  It’s a thinly disguised rewrite of “You Only Live Twice”

Interesting.  In what way.  Don't half the films in the series confine to the Dr. No/Goldfinger formula, rather than anything specifically YOLT did. Just the nuclear missiles plan?  Because that would be more akin to Thunderball.

The nuclear submarine could be comparable to the YOLT battle-copter.  But what else am I missing?

I think Manxman means the ships swallowing the submarines (like the space capsules swallowing the Soviet and American capsules in YOLT) and trying to instigate another world war. For sure it's very similar in this regard. But I absolutely love TSWLM and don't have any gripes with it whatsoever ajb007/cheers

"Any of the opposition around..?"

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Barbel, I saw the video.

Some of these are more than just coincidences (the villains bases, sharks, etc), but in most cases TSWLM seems to be just another movie following the formula.

I think almost every movie after Goldfinger could be likened to another Bond movie in 36 ways.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

The Red Kind wrote:
Absolutely_Cart wrote:
Manxman wrote:

  It’s a thinly disguised rewrite of “You Only Live Twice”

Interesting.  In what way.  Don't half the films in the series confine to the Dr. No/Goldfinger formula, rather than anything specifically YOLT did. Just the nuclear missiles plan?  Because that would be more akin to Thunderball.

The nuclear submarine could be comparable to the YOLT battle-copter.  But what else am I missing?

I think Manxman means the ships swallowing the submarines (like the space capsules swallowing the Soviet and American capsules in YOLT) and trying to instigate another world war. For sure it's very similar in this regard. But I absolutely love TSWLM and don't have any gripes with it whatsoever ajb007/cheers

Agreed  ajb007/cheers

It's hard to find Faults with the Film.

1.On Her Majesties Secret Service 2.The Living Daylights 3.license To Kill 4.The Spy Who Loved Me 5.Goldfinger

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I don't love it. The PTS is exciting and still ranks high on my list as one of the best, but the rest of the film doesn't do much for me. Moore does okay in this outing, but I think he's better in FYOE and OP. Babara Bach is attractive, but her acting leaves something to be desired. I find Stromberg to be a rather bland villain, and although Jaws is certainly an iconic and memorable henchman, his indestructability just becomes cartoonish after a while. All in all, I think TSWLM is okay for a Roger Moore Bond, but not the best.

"Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."

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glad to see another octopussy fan

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I'm a fan of all sorts of  ..........   ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

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lol

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Absolutely_Cart wrote:

Barbel, I saw the video.

Some of these are more than just coincidences.

Exactly. Some are formula, to be sure. Others may be chance. But the sheer number of them does firmly suggest a deliberate plan.

"Mr Bond, they have a saying in Chicago. Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I think the formula is so ingrained, copying older films is instinct - not wholly deliberate.  I feel like TSWLM took pieces of all of Connery's films.  YOLT may be the most apparent but numerous ones are present.

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Yes, I agree  ajb007/cheers

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

Me too  ajb007/martini

1.On Her Majesties Secret Service 2.The Living Daylights 3.license To Kill 4.The Spy Who Loved Me 5.Goldfinger

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Re: Pros and Cons: The Spy Who Loved Me

I don't want to hold this against TSWLM because I think most post-YOLT films copy the formula.  I guess the only reason why people have a problem with it in TSWLM because TSWLM is otherwise pretty much flawless.