Any series that has a storied past with 24 films and six different leads is going to have strong opinions coming from all sides. Who played 007 the best (Connery, of course; though Craig is giving him a run for his money), which title song is the best (“Live and Let Die” – Paul McCartney & The Wings), and finally; which film is the best? With 24 films, you’re going to hit marks across the board for quality. Some are exceptional while others fall flat. With the release of SPECTRE coming later this year revisiting the films became somewhat of a necessity. How did your favorite 007 entry pan out? Find out below.
24) On Her Majesty’s Secret Service – 1969 – George Lazenby
George Lazenby’s one-and-done Bond film doesn’t have a lot going for it. Filling the empty shoes left by Connery, Lazenby himself does a pretty good job as Bond, but the weird brainwashing plot involving Blofield keeps the movie down. The writers also attempt to get Bond to settle down by marrying his “Bond-girl.” Don’t worry though, she dies almost immediately in a drive-by from Blofield. Yeah…
23) You Only Live Twice – 1967 – Sean Connery
Being the best Bond doesn’t mean you get all the best movies. Connery starred in some amazing stinkers throughout his tenure. You Only Live Twice involves space, rockets, volcanos, and ninjas. It’s a blender full of Bond staples and manages to be pretty campy (not that there’s an issue with campiness, it just has to be done right) with a lack of any really memorable moments, save for it being another Blofeld film.
22) Tomorrow Never Dies – 1997 – Pierce Brosnan
What a waste of Jonathan Pryce and Pierce Brosnan (Sexy Gadgets Bond; also 3rd Best). The main villain’s goal? Riches and power by starting war so that people will watch his news stations. Yep. Essentially like Ted Turner trying to cause World War III. Lame plot, with meh action setpieces, and a plethora of forgettable henchman; Tomorrow Never Dies is the worst of Brosnan’s tenure.
21) Thunderball – 1965 – Sean Connery
In the old days, and sometimes in the new, Bond always had time for some nookie. Moments after escaping death, do we take care of the body? No. Sexy times. SPECTRE is the evil organization once again here. This time, it’s Largo, the #2 of the outfit. He had a pretty straightforward plot: steal atomic bombs and make threats. Everything ends up underwater (literally) and Bond saves the day. Yay.
20) Never Say Never Again – 1983 – Sean Connery
19) The World Is Not Enough – 1999 – Pierce Brosnan
This is where we begin to see an uptick in quality of the films on this list. The World is Not Enough is a good bit of fun. It’s not particularly well-made, but it’s not a slog of a ride. The main villain, Renard (played by the amazing Robert Carlyle), is immune to pain which makes for some amazing scenes of him torturing his henchmen. Lots of gadgets, a decent plot, and some fine acting moments make this a solid entry in Brosnan’s legacy.
That’s it for Part one. Agree with the list? Disagree? Give me a pat on the back or just let me have it in the comment section below and then watch for the remaining three parts of the list!
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