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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sean Connery Pix

Sean Connery Stills Owns the Role of James Bond

Here, for no particular reason, some photos of Sean Connery from the early days of James Bond. Easy now to forget how revolutionary the whole idea of a manly spy was back in the early 1960s, which is a tribute in its own way to the very special Mr. Sean Connery. These are all, I believe, from the "Dr. No" - "Thunderball" period.

Sean Connery jamesbondreview.filminspector.com
Sean Connery at the golf course in "Goldfinger."

Sean Connery jamesbondreview.filminspector.com


Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery in "Goldfinger."

Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Robbie Williams in his "Millenium" video looks eerily like this Sean Connery promo picture

Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery in his first moments as James Bond in "Dr. No."

Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery relaxing at the beach

Sean Connery Thunderball jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery while filming "Thunderball" 1965


Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery, promo from the "Thunderball" period.
Sean Connery jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
Sean Connery in a classic pose

Monday, May 13, 2013

Skyfall - James Bond Movie Posters

"Skyfall" Justifies All that Came Before with Daniel Craig

The abrupt about-face of the James Bond franchise when Daniel Craig came on board startled a lot of fans. Many did not take kindly to this preening usurper, pretending to be some kind of superhero as the iconic Ian Fleming super-spy. Craig's first two films did well financially, but it was clear that he had not won over the general moviegoing audience. All that changed with "Skyfall," which isolated Craig as a Bond who was hurt but kept on coming. "Skyfall" was a massive financial success, earning over a Billion Dollars at the box office, and it resulted in the immediate order two more James Bond films with Daniel Craig in the lead role.

Note the difference from the Pierce Brosnan years - not only are there no women with guns standing ready to smite James Bond's foes for him, there aren't any women in the posters period. This is a man's business, the posters seem to be saying, and it is best left to men. The strategy worked brilliantly and Daniel Craig finally won over the hearts of fans around the world.

Skyfall movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Skyfall movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Skyfall movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com





Quantum of Solace - James Bond Movie Posters

"Quantum of Solace" Continues the Rebirth of James Bond

"Quantum of Solace" was not a particularly successful James Bond film. Oh, it undoubtedly made the producers money and paid the actors quite handsomely, but critically, it was a major failure. The production was troubled, with bad weather causing trouble and injury on set. Nothing seemed to go smoothly. There was some question of whether the series would survive at all. Daniel Craig, though, continued his heroic recreation of the James Bond character in the vein of Sean Connery, and it continued working.

In several of the film posters for "Quantum of Solace," Craig is seen leading his female through devastation, manfully contemplating what he must do in solitude. In other versions of the poster, all that is seen is Craig's shadow. James Bond is waving his gun, prepared for action, with all the implied menace that an inhuman silhouette can convey. It was brilliant marketing that ran counter to everything that came before in the Pierce Brosnan days.

The publicists were building a brand, or more accurately re-branding James Bond, brick by brick. They faced strong resistance from that part of the fan base which had grown accustomed to the girly man image which had infested the Pierce Brosnan era film posters. The payoff of this foundation-laying did not come with "Quantum of Solace" itself, but rather with its successor. "Skyfall" would eclipse all of its predecessors in terms of critical and financial rewards because of the hard work recreating the character that had been done in "Casino Royale" and "Quantum of Solace."


Quantum of Solace movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



Quantum of Solace Daniel Craig jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Quantum of Solace Daniel Craig jamesbondreview.blogspot.com


Quantum of Solace movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Quantum of Solace Daniel Craig jamesbondreview.blogspot.com


Quantum of Solace movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



Casino Royale 2006 - James Bond Film Posters

James Bond Resurrected in Casino Royale

Eva Green Daniel Craig Casino Royale jamesbondreview.filiminspector.com


After the muddled Pierce Brosnan years, James Bond needed a major regrouping. They got it with Daniel Craig, an unassuming actor who turned the British man of action that so many fans dearly wanted to see. No longer do the posters show women standing protectively by James Bond, guns handy to do his dirty work as he looks pretty. Now, in "Casino Royale," we have a man of steel, almost a superhero, who is dissheveled but gets the job done. Instead of waiting for women to save him, he manfully walks away from the beautiful Eva Green in order to get things done. It was a brilliant turnabout by the producers, sensing that women want that sort of determination from men as much as men want to do it, and eventually it paid off handsomely at the box office.


Casino Royale 2006 jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Casino Royale 2006 jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Casino Royale 2006 jamesbondreview.blogspot.com


Casino Royale 2006 jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



2015

Die Another Day - James Bond Movie Posters

Die Another Day Becomes Pierce Brosnan's Last Day as James Bond

For those who have followed the James Bond film posters in progression on this blog, from first ("Dr. No") to last, the odd film posters for "Die Another Day" will come as no great surprise. The subtle changes made in the first few Pierce Brosnan films (beginning with "Goldeneye") are now confirmed and even extended. The Bond Girls have moved from their supportive position behind James Bond to front and center. Indeed, they are actually standing beside him and firing with him, just as capably as he is firing. It is a complete turnabout from the Sean Connery days of James Bond, when the spy would roughly seduce a woman and then callously hold her as she got shot in the back ("Thunderball"), or the Roger Moore days, when he would vigorously throw his young lovely behind himself and step forward to take shots at the bad guys ("The Spy Who Loved Me"). It almost seemed, from the film posters for "Die Another Day," that the Pierce Brosnan version of James Bond needed all the fighting help he could get from the Bond girls around him. The subtle implication was that it was he, the pretty boy, who needed protection, not the Bond Girls.

I want to be clear that I'm not coming down on Pierce Brosnan. He wasn't responsible for marketing, and I'm sure he wanted to be as manly in the role as anyone. Clearly, others didn't want him to be. And I'm not necessarily the biggest fan of Daniel Craig's over-the-top portrayal of James Bond as some kind of superhero. My taste lies in between, more like the balanced Sean Connery and Roger Moore characterizations, heroics mixed with knowing banter, which are only looking better as time passes.

Needless to say, the weak portrayal of James Bond as a kind of girly man was not what many die-hard fans were expecting from the series. What exactly is the point of a James Bond spy who isn't in control? Sean Connery might have been in jeopardy from dominant females now and then ("Goldfinger"), but his movie posters didn't have the women taking shots to protect him. Having brought this "Bond as damsel in distress" theme as far as they could - what was next, the Bond girls standing in the front and Pierce in the background? Actually, look below, they already were actually going there - the Eon producers belatedly realized a change was in order. This explains why they made the abrupt transition back to the Sean Connery mold of a manly spy rather than a sort of "group hug" sleuth. Daniel Craig was waiting in the wings, and he would turn the entire James Bond dynamic around.


Die Another Day movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Die Another Day movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Die Another Day movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Die Another Day movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Die Another Day movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com


The World is Not Enough - James Bond Movie Posters

"The World is Not Enough" Falls Flat


Pierce Brosnan had settled into his role as James Bond, and things were rolling along nicely. The producers got the hot band of the moment, Garbage, to perform the theme song, which they did in bravura Bondian fashion. Everything seemed set for a real revival of the fanchise, which would secure Pierce Brosnan's position as the true heir apparent to Sean Connery for years to come.

The film posters once again, however, did their best to undermine Pierce Brosnan's masculinity as James Bond. Many versions have the females moving up protectively beside Brosnan and even using their arms to shield him. It is almost as if Bond is Moammar Quaddafy, with his cadre of attractive female bodyguards. Denise Richards stands there in an athletic tank top, hair up in a bun, glaring at the camera. She practically dares you to make the wrong move before she breaks out the brass knuckles. "Are you looking at me? Are... you...looking....at....me???" So much for trying to look glamorous and inviting!

The trend of having posters devoted solely to the Bond girls, without James Bond at all, also accelerated. While the producers may have been thinking that this was a good way to broaden the audience to include more women, emasculating the titular character hardly was the best way to do it. "The World is Not Enough" has gotten a lot of ribbing over the years for beautiful Denise Richards playing a nuclear physicist, but the real weakness of "The World is Not Enough" started right with the poster presentation.

The World is Not Enough movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The World is Not Enough movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The World is Not Enough movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The World is Not Enough movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The World is Not Enough movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com


Tomorrow Never Dies - James Bond Movie Posters

Pierce Brosnan Keeps on Trucking in "Tomorrow Never Dies"

The Eon producers followed the same tactic that they had with the posters of "Goldeneye" when they marketed "Tomorrow Never Dies." They played up Brosnan's good looks, and emphasized that he was being protected by the two main females standing protectively behind him. It was a far cry from the manly 007 days of Sean Connery, and even Roger Moore had always held held his females beside him, protecting them rather than vice versa. It was a real change in direction that did not go down well with some audiences, and this, as much as anything anything, is probably responsible for Pierce Brosnan's mixed reputation as James Bond. When given the chance, he could be as manly as anyone, but the producers were trying to sell him as nothing but a ladies man, and you can't argue with success.  



Tomorrow Never Dies movies poster jamesbondreview.blospot.com

Tomorrow Never Dies movies poster jamesbondreview.blospot.com



Goldeneye - James Bond Movie Posters

Pierce Brosnan Takes Over with Goldeneye

Pierce Brosnan had been at the top of the Eon Productions honchos for many years when he finally got out of his ABC Television contract for "Remington Steele" and contracted for the role of James Bond. He was a popular choice, and all started out well with "Goldeneye." It had been several years in between James Bond films, and the public awaited the new one with eagerness. Brosnan did not disappoint, as his dapper handling of almost any crisis proved a tonic after the somewhat heavy-handed Timothy Dalton films. Some said that Brosnan had an almost feminine air about him, and that was played up in the posters, which featured the strong presence of the two main Bond girls.

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

Goldeneye movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



License to Kill - James Bond Movie Posters

"License to Kill" Becomes Timothy Dalton's Final Appearance

Timothy Dalton came and went as the successor to Roger Moore, and there isn't really much more to say about his brief tenure. He did a competent job, and certainly had his share of fanatical fans, but Roger Moore was a tough act to follow. It didn't help that Timothy Dalton would have been better suited for the energetic side of the James Bond role when he made the short list some years earlier, at the time of production planning of "For Your Eyes Only." The Eon producers, though, concluded that half-hearted search by retaining the aging Roger Moore for a few more films.

The film posters were mediocre, as was just about everything else about the two Timothy Dalton films. The James Bond crew from the '60s was getting on in years and, frankly, it was beginning to look as if they just didn't much care any longer. There were no memorable villains, the Bond girls were only so-so, and the plots were pedestrian. Timothy Dalton's patented shark-grin was unique, but not enough to make the films particularly entertaining. The spin at the time was that Dalton would be more macho, "as Ian Fleming intended." They say that, of course, with every new James Bond actor. The scripts didn't really emphasize that, and Dalton's James Bond wound up without much of a unique character such as Connery (manly) or Moore (light-hearted). Probably the best you could say was that he was a "gritty" James Bond. The film posters focused heavily on Dalton running about and smirking because they had very little else to go on.



License to Kill movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com
License to Kill Timothy Dalton movie poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

License to Kill Timothy Dalton jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



The Living Daylights - James Bond Movie Posters

Timothy Dalton Takes Over

Everybody who takes over as the next James Bond is guaranteed a major career boost. Timothy Dalton was no exception. He had been considered for the role before, but passed over. Pierce Brosnan, the producers' first choice, was unavailable, so the role went to Dalton. he played the character with an impish, devil-may-care attitude that didn't quite catch on with audiences the way that the carefree Roger Moore style had won them over. He only lasted two movies, and they were both forgettable, but he looked good in the role.


The Living Daylights jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The Living Daylights jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

The Living Daylights jamesbondreview.blogspot.com



A View to a Kill - James Bond Movie Posters

Roger Moore Bows Out

Roger Moore had carried the burden of James Bond for over a decade, and survived several attempts to replace him with younger, fresher men. His witty banter and wry sense of humor, though, had saved him. Finally, it was time to bow out, and he did so gracefully with "A View to a Kill," the 1985 entry in the James Bond 007 canon. It wasn't a great film, but it worked and worked well. The theme song was a big hit, and Christopher Walken won rave reviews as the eccentric bad guy.

A View to a Kill film poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

A View to a Kill film poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

A View to a Kill film poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

A View to a Kill film poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com

A View to a Kill film poster jamesbondreview.blogspot.com