Friday, 11 January 2013


With the recent 50th anniversary and celebration of all things Bond the black sheep of the family is worth a revisit. I’m talking about Never Say Never again: the other unofficial Bond movie if you include 1967’s Casino Royale

Never Say Never Again manages to assemble one of the best casts of any of the official Bond movies.
The director of The Empire Strikes Back Irvin Kershner directs this updated version of Thunderball starring Sean Connery, who is of course the definitive 007.

Max von Sydow (complete with white Cat) as the shadowy head of an international crime cartel, Claus Maria Brandauer is the villain of the piece  Kim Basinger features as good Bond girl and Barbara Carrera as bikini & fur clad bad girl Fatima Blush. Edward Fox is an inspired choice as M and minor generic roles are played by stalwarts of British cinema in the form of the tough Pat Roach and the gorgeous Valeria Leon. It even features Rowan Atkinson as comic relief.
The movie is as innuendo filled as the Roger Moore output without the sleaze that Moore bought to the part.
The famous Bond car is replaced by a Bond Motor Bike and the theme tune is not bad at all.

We are treated to gadgets on land, sea and air and exotic locales including a Casino, where a very much of the time computer game takes the place of a card game as the focus of a head to head between Bond and the Villain.

It has all the ingredients required and if its a little bit lacking in real quality at times it is a film that certainly has a great sense of fun with the whole Bondian conventions without being cartoonish, as the Roger Moore outings were. The Film even ends with Connery delivering a knowing wink to the audience.

One criticism is that it gives us the unedifying sight of James Bond in Dungarees: never wear them again please James.


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having said that;