Bonding with Bond, Day 3: Goldfinger

One intrepid RT editor is watching all of the James Bond films in order.

by | October 23, 2008 | Comments

This is Day 3 of my three-week journey, and my writeup is be on Goldfinger, another beloved Bond classic.

Goldfinger (1964) 97%

So far, watching the Bond films has yielded revelation upon revelation, as I saw the various elements that later films borrowed from them. I think, for example, that I would have appreciated the Austin Powers series on a far greater level had I seen Goldfinger first. Goldfinger vs. Goldmember, Pussy Galore vs. Alotta Fagina, Oddjob vs. Random Task, etc. And I promise that’ll be the last comparison I’ll make to Austin Powers for a while — even I’m somewhat disturbed it’s my first point of reference.

The beginning of Goldfinger immediately sets a different tone from its predecessor, as we see Bond swimming underwater with a faux duck pasted to the top of his head. After emerging and tossing aside the disguise, he deploys a grappling hook to scale a wall, dispatches a guard, breaks into a room full of heroin and explosive gas to plant a bomb, sheds his wetsuit to reveal a pristine white tux, and casually lights a cigarette as a blood orange explosion thunders in the background. This is how I had always pictured 007.

We also get our first look at Q branch, where all the spy gadgets are born, and Bond’s classic, pimped out Aston Martin DB5. The familiar tools of the trade are starting to come together, and that’s pretty novel to see for the first time. From simply supplying a Walther PPK, to providing an all-purpose briefcase, to building a bulletproof, machine gun equipped, oil-slicking, “homer” tracking luxury car, it seems Q’s budget has gotten some attention.

One thing that’s remained constant so far, however, is the level of sophistication and chivalry in Bond’s adversaries. Dr. No practically treats him to an all-inclusive spa vacation; Red Grant maintains polite conversation even as he’s about to blow Bond away; and here, Goldfinger plays a round of golf with him before attempting to split his coccyx up the middle with a laser. I suppose it makes sense on some level; if I could convince my greatest enemy to sit down, have a cigar, and discuss fixed rate mortgages, it’d probably be that much easier for my henchman to sneak up from behind and take the sucker’s head clean off with his deadly… hat. Sadly, I fear quality nemeses like these have gone the way of the archaeopteryx.

Honor Blackman as Pussy Galore
There isn’t as much womanizing in Goldfinger, partly because Bond is ordered to keep himself in check, and partly because Pussy Galore isn’t the kind of woman who will stand for it. Her name is an utter tease, because she’s so far the only woman who hasn’t immediately disrobed upon making eye contact with Bond. But let’s be serious here; this is James Bond. Does he end up literally rolling in the hay with PG (ha, ironic!) anyway? Naturally. I’ve come to expect it.

All in all, Goldfinger was a nice mix of its two predecessors, blending the playfulness and charm of Dr. No with the story and production quality of From Russia With Love. It was campy at times, but it also had some decent action and a relatively believable plot that was easy to follow, not that you need a 170 IQ to follow any Bond plot, it seems. Finally, I’m somewhat reluctant to admit it, but I think I’m finding I enjoy the sillier elements in these films more than anything else.

Favorite line: “No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!”

Favorite moment: The gassing of Fort Knox, which plays out much like the fainting goats viral video. It was so good I rewound it and watched it in double-time, which made it even better.


Other Articles:

Tag Cloud

spider-man Marathons comiccon Watching Series HBO Rock Film Festival Ghostbusters Lionsgate transformers Teen political drama Lucasfilm spy thriller MCU biography Winners Brie Larson Winter TV Election BET First Look period drama cats DC streaming service YouTube Red Lifetime Pride Month Action adaptation CW Seed blaxploitation CNN Mary Tyler Moore Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Kids & Family TruTV President Paramount Tumblr Sundance crime drama Creative Arts Emmys TV Land theme song TNT Epix Apple Masterpiece Spring TV unscripted comic technology SXSW Food Network Reality Competition Trivia disaster CMT natural history Shondaland CBS All Access casting finale ratings Music Pirates Freeform Amazon Comedy award winner DC Universe adventure PaleyFest WGN IFC Films GoT Black Mirror GLAAD Awards Tour Dark Horse Comics Superheroe politics serial killer Walt Disney Pictures DC Comics Polls and Games The CW Opinion Rom-Com Horror robots justice league diversity 2017 Country ABC American Society of Cinematographers LGBT facebook Chernobyl festivals Mystery The Witch Paramount Network strong female leads OWN Bravo Showtime San Diego Comic-Con E! Drama NYCC Fall TV Schedule 2018 what to watch Elton John Comic Book Vudu discovery docudrama History Acorn TV dramedy LGBTQ thriller zombie Esquire science fiction historical drama Fantasy crossover TCA Netflix sitcom cults Red Carpet 45 Columbia Pictures Podcast Trophy Talk MTV television Extras Cannes Mary poppins Spike Pop 2016 Anna Paquin RT21 Premiere Dates sequel Musical Pixar Superheroes streaming medical drama composers E3 TBS travel Syfy Video Games See It Skip It Pet Sematary TIFF YouTube Premium dceu golden globes game show 2019 mockumentary Warner Bros. BBC America supernatural Biopics Ellie Kemper Interview Martial Arts vampires Toys Grammys SDCC Hulu Ovation Valentine's Day Certified Fresh Sneak Peek Amazon Prime Comics on TV DGA Crackle BBC talk show Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Thanksgiving ITV Starz Sony Pictures Musicals boxoffice X-Men 2015 Tarantino Tomatazos Logo anime Photos Rocketman singing competition TLC based on movie romance 007 Rocky The Arrangement Box Office Character Guide Oscars miniseries USA Network TV VH1 jamie lee curtis binge crime Spectrum Originals anthology Mary Poppins Returns true crime psychological thriller Britbox Set visit cinemax harry potter YA Song of Ice and Fire Disney Channel Emmys FX Women's History Month Quiz dc New York Comic Con Nominations Summer ESPN Animation FXX Infographic Nat Geo National Geographic MSNBC Calendar Trailer police drama Christmas IFC Stephen King A&E Reality 21st Century Fox El Rey Star Trek psycho Best and Worst animated cops Shudder witnail teaser war green book FOX Awards GIFs PBS CBS social media Heroines Writers Guild of America AMC Cosplay NBC space VICE toy story SundanceTV Year in Review Adult Swim APB cooking Cartoon Network Holidays aliens Fox News zombies Countdown Disney doctor who RT History elevated horror richard e. Grant Captain marvel nature mutant sports Sundance Now USA crime thriller Star Wars spinoff 24 frames TCM Sci-Fi TCA 2017 zero dark thirty hist DirecTV dragons Marvel Super Bowl Comedy Central Universal Mudbound Nickelodeon ABC Family Western Mindy Kaling 20th Century Fox