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Thursday, 20 October 2016

Project Bond: You Only Live Twice

"The Things I Do for England"


We're heading into the realms of parody fodder with You Only Live Twice. The obvious one being the parallels with Austin Powers and especially Blofeld and Dr Evil. You Only Live Twice was Sean Connery's 5th Bond film in five years and you can tell from his performance in the film that he was no longer happy making Bond movies and he was really just going through the motions.

The film starts with a US spaceship doing some routine mission in orbit when another mysterious spaceship approaches before the capsule opens and engulfs the US ship. The US think the Russians are to blame (it's was always the Russians to blame in the cold war). When we first see Bond he is in Hong Kong bedding a Chinese bird (obviously) but then she springs a trap and Bond is seemingly shot to death. Bond is buried at sea (he is a Commander in the Royal Navy after all) but it then turns out that he is not dead and he faked his death to get some of his enemies to stop looking for him.

Bond is sent to Japan to investigate as this is where the British think the mystery Spaceship landed back on Earth. While Bond is Investigating a shady company he is captured by a woman we find out later is Number 11 in SPECTRE. The next sequence of events for me make absolutely no sense at all. While Bond is being interrogated by Number 11 she slaps him around a little and then without much prompting from Bond suddenly succumbs to his charms and they start making out, I know bond is a ladies man but this is just ridiculous. She then frees him and they end up in bed together. After they do the do they make plans to escape together and fly back to Europe, then when they are on the plane Number 11 traps Bond again and parachutes out of the plane leaving Bond to die. This all seems entirely unnecessary as if she wanted him dead she could have just done it when he was tied to the chair at the start.

Anyway back to the film, after Bond escapes the plane he meets up with Q and gets a mini gyrocopter laden with all manner of Q Branch upgrades. Bond takes "Little Nellie" for a spin around the island he is checking out and soon an ariel battle ensure as Bond is circling an extinct volcano.

Soon after a Russian spaceship is taken by the same mystery spaceship and this time we see that SPECTRE is behind it. we see Number 1 stroking his white Persian Cat, he is not happy with Number 11 as she let Bond escape and dispatches her by setting off a trapdoor on a bridge over a pool of Piranha.

Bond is told he will be trained as a ninja, because why not, and for some reason needs to wear prosthetics to look Japanese. While Bond is sleeping an assassin tries to poison him but the woman he's been knobbing gets it instead. We now find out Bond is disguised so he can sneak onto the island SPECTRE is working from. As Bond is snooping around he finds that SPECTRE is based in a frickin' secret lair in a frickin' hollowed out volcano. Bond infiltrates the base but is spotted by Number one who finally introduces himself as Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the scar-faced, bald headed, Nehru jacket wearing head of SPECTRE played by Donald Pleasance. We are told that SPECTRE wants USA and Russia to go to war so SPECTRE can rise up and take over the world.

Blofeld proceeds with their plan to steal another US spaceship but the ninja's Bond has been training with arrive and Bond escapes and manages to blow up SPECTRE's spaceship but Blofeld escapes and sets off a self destruct mechanism in the volcano (because all secret lairs need a self destruct mechanism).

The is not a good bond film it's only saving grace is Donald Pleasance as Blofeld and he is only fleetingly in it for the last few minutes. You can tell from the finished film that it was a strained production with Connery and producer Cubby Broccoli having a massive falling out during the making of the film. If it weren't for the poor box office returns of the next film then this would probably have been Connery's last outing as Bond.

Project Bond will be back On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

Well, that's all for now.

S

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