7 for 007
Maybe there was faint hope of uniting all six men who played James Bond in the cinematic Eon canon on stage last Sunday at the Oscars in honor of 007's half-century in film. All we got was a decent but not exceptional montage and Shirley Bassey singing the theme from Goldfinger, which for the first minute or so I remained unconvinced was not Maya Rudolph doing Shirley Bassey singing the theme from Goldfinger. The Internet, luckily, is here to soften the blow with heaps upon heaps of bloomin' Bondage.
The Bond movies' 50th anniversary actually fell last year — October 5th, to be precise, on the date that Sean Connery's debut as Bond in Eon Productions' adaptation of Ian Fleming's Dr. No hit screens five decades before. Here are seven links — not counting the self-serving ones — that (mostly) honor the Bond legacy, particularly in film.
Many of the links come from The James Bond Lexicon, Alan J. Porter's companion blog to his upcoming A-to-Z reference of the same name. Subtitled The Unauthorized Guide to the World of 007 in Movies, Novels, and Comics, it's scheduled to be published next year by Hasslein Books. I had some continuity questions after watching Skyfall, as you know if you've read my own review of the movie, so I pitched an interview with Porter, an old CompuServe acquaintance, to my friend and Comicology senior contributing editor Stefan Blitz for his site Forces of Geek; it went up on Friday.
Several creative hands marked Bond's silver-screen golden anniversary with montages that easily rivaled the one offered at the Academy Awards. IGN's "The 50 Greatest Bond Moments in 007 Minutes" is worth a click just for the brisk opening segue through each of the six canonical Bonds' gun-barrel sequences. How thrilling is that theme every time you hear it?
If you have a couple of hours to spare, you can watch 50 Years of James Bond: The Movie. This wild uberfilm stitches together the twenty-two official Eon installments before last year's Skyfall. After a quick cut of all the titles it begins with the first 5 minutes of 1962's Dr. No and moves on through the "next" 5 minutes or so of each subsequent entry in the series, concluding with the final 5 minutes of 2008's Quantum of Solace. I haven't made the time to enjoy it yet myself, but it looks pretty danged cool.
You can find trailers for all the Bond films from Dr. No through Quantum of Solace — including both non-series oddities (1967's all-star spoof Casino Royale and 1983's Thunderball reworking, Never Say Never Again, which brought Sean Connery back late in the Roger Moore era) — at the Lexicon blog. Given that, like most blogs, JBL places the newest content first, the trailers appear in reverse chronological order (unless you jump to the last page, scroll to the bottom, and make your way up and "forward" again), with multiple teasers for 2012's Skyfall in the middle.
Fans of Bond in prose or just of design over the years and across different cultures should check out 1,000 James Bond Books. It's pretty much what the title says, hundreds upon hundreds of covers to both official and unofficial English and international volumes starring and about 007. A similar gallery on the cinematic side of things can be found at Ultimate 007 Movie Posters. Given my inclination for meta humor I get a particular kick out of seeing images for 1963's From Russia with Love in other languages.
To wrap things up and bring them full circle to the Lexicon affair, I offer a pair of pieces that touch on issues raised in my Skyfall review and interview with Alan. Old friend, Comicology contributor, and frequent commenter to the blog Rafael Benjamin forwarded me a link to a piece on the Tor website from last year answering all the problems inherent in the film series' serial 007s, "Skyfall Proves That James Bond Is a Time Lord". I didn't mention it to Alan before he brought up the same theory in our conversation, nor to Stefan even though he ended up inserting a link to the same essay in the published interview. Also worth a gander unless you can't stand to have a movie you like picked apart is "Everything Wrong with Skyfall in 4 Minutes or Less" from the folks at CinemaSins.
You're more than welcome to leave your own favorite Bond links in the comments.
Images © year of production their respective copyright holders. James Bond film incarnation ® Danjaq LLC & United Artists Corp. James Bond literary incarnation ® Ian Fleming Publications.
If you purchase the 50th-anniversary Blu-Ray set or DVD collection of all previous 007 Eon films, or say Taschen's hefty James Bond Archives hardcover, or anything else placed in your cart during the session after clicking through the links here, Blam's Blog may receive a small percentage of the sale.