GoldenEye

Goldeneye, editorial content, 007, James Bond, spy movie podcasts, EON Production movies, espionage, Pierce BrosnanGoldenEye, released in 1995 and Eon Productions 17th Bond film, pits a former MI6 agent 006 – Alec Trevelyan, against Bond and the world.   Of course, Alec has help with his cohort, Xenia Onatopp – a skilled assassin.  There is this space weapon, named GoldenEye, that must be dealt with before the Russian syndicate uses it to threaten the world.   

There are reasons Trevelyan wants revenge on the Britain for betraying his parents.  This is a solid movie, with great action, beautiful women like Natalya of course, and interesting characters like Boris Grishenko, a programmer.

Pierce Brosnan is the new James Bond and will star in a total of 4 Bond movies – this perhaps his best.  

Casino Royale (2006)

Casino Royale, editorial content, 007, James Bond, spy movie podcasts, EON Production movies, espionage, Daniel CraigCasino Royale, released in 2006 by Eon Productions, it’s 21st Bond film, rebooted the series with another new James Bond, Daniel Craig, now earning his 00 status here.   The script sticks closely to the Ian Fleming novel and is a masterpiece of suspense involving big-stakes Casino gambling at Casino Royale in Montenegro., Le Chifre, a terrorist money manager, who is trying to recoup money he was to invest for war lords in Uganga, Vesper Lynd – Bond’s love interest, we meet Mr. White, Rene Mathis and others along the way.  And a big ending.

Often rated one of the best James Bond movies ever, Casino Royale (2006) takes us all over the globe from Prague, Uganda, Madagascar the Bahamas and more.

For Your Eyes Only

For Your Eyes Only, editorial content, 007, James Bond, spy movie podcasts, EON Production movies, espionage, Roger MooreFor Your Eyes Only was the James Bond movie released in 1981. It stars Roger Moore, returning in the role of James Bond.

James Bond needs to find a device called Automatic Targeting Attack Communicator (ATAC) which was in a submarine that had sunk.  The soviets find out about the missing ATAC so a race to find it ensues.

Bond must also deal with a man named Milos Columbo and one named Kristatos.  One of these men is an ally and one is the enemy.  James Bond must figure out who is the ally as he isn’t sure for a while in the movie.

Best of the Rest Movies Podcasts

Listen to our podcasts of our Best of the Rest category of spy movies.  This is just one part of the Cracking the Code of Spy Movies Channel.

Or go to your favorite podcast app (links on left on PC or below on mobile) and subscribe to Cracking the Code of Spy Movies.

Interview w/Director & Screenwriter for ALL THE OLD KNIVES!

Podcast Episode

Interview w/Director & Screenwriter for ALL THE OLD KNIVES!

This episode features the Director of the film, ALL THE OLD KNIVES, Janus Metz, and the Screenwriter and also the author of the novel of the same name, Olen Steinhauer!  

The new espionage movie ALL THE OLD KNIVES, has a release date of April 8, 2022, in the US on Amazon Prime Video.

We interview the Director of the film, ALL THE OLD KNIVES, Janus Metz, and the Screenwriter and also the author of the novel of the same name, Olen Steinhauer!

In this movie, two CIA agents and ex-lovers (Chris Pine and Thandiwe Newton) are brought back together years after a failed rescue attempt – and forced to blur the lines between profession and passion in this deeply riveting tale of global espionage, moral dilemma, and deadly betrayal.  Add Laurence Fishburne and Jonathan Pryce and you have one star-studded cast.

Join us for this fascinating talk!   How’d they get the title?  The cast?

Or watch and listen to this fascinating interview on our Cracking the Code of Spy Movies YouTube channel 

Check out our “ALL THE OLD KNIVES First Reactions – No Spoilers” episode to hear our thoughts on the movie (available April 6th).

Ideas:Info@SpyMovieNavigator.com

 

In our no-spoiler discussion of the movie All the Old Knives with director Janus Metz and screenwriter Olen Steinhauer, we discuss:

  • The chaotic first 45-seconds of the movie
  • How Olen Steinhauer turned his novel “All the Old Knives” into a screenplay
  • The use of flashbacks
  • The importance of the Director of Photography
  • How COVID impacted filming
  • How they shot airplane interiors
  • The importance of family to the story
  • The cast (Chris Pine, Thandiwe Newton, Laurence Fishbourne, and Jonathan Pryce)
  • And more …

More Episodes

THE IPCRESS FILE Series Launched! Is it worth your time?

We've had the opportunity to view all 6 episodes of this monumental series. Dan, Tom, and Vicky share their no-spoilers insights here!

Funeral in Berlin (1966) – Part 2 – Scene Analysis & Connections

Watch Video Analysis & Review of Key Scenes Join Dan and Tom as they finish up their look at Funeral in Berlin! 

Terence Mountain – interview – was in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Diamonds are Forever

Tom, Dan and Vicky interview Terry Mountain who was in two James Bond movies:  On Her Majesty's Secret Service and Diamonds Are Forever.

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THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH – Decoded!

Podcast Episode

THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH – Decoded!

Dan and Tom are joined by Bill Koenig of The Spy Command website. We decode both versions of the Hitchcock classic The Man Who Knew Too Much!

 

Mistaken identities! World travelers! Mystery in the middle east! Secrets told, murder plots, kidnappings, and more – all in THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH!

Join Dan and Tom as they are joined by Bill Koenig of The Spy Command website. We decode both the 1934 and the 1956 versions of this Alfred Hitchcock classic spy movie!

Ideas? Info@SpyMovieNavigator.com

 

Related Content

We examine the following from both the 1934 and 1956 versions of The Man Who Knew Too Much:

  • Alfred Hitchcock’s thoughts on the two versions
  • Charles Bennet’s influence in these and other spy movies
  • The opening sequences
  • Cultural education of the audience
    The important role of the wives in these movies
  • The role of the children
  • Ben’s sleuthing skills
  • Other differences and similarities between the two movies
  • And more ..

More Episodes

Hitchcock spy movie techniques with Tony Lee Moral

We talk with the author of the new book "The Young Alfred Hitchcock's Movie Making Masterclass" and discuss how Hitchcock made spy movies.

Interview with author Tony Lee Moral on Hitchcock’s NOTORIOUS

Dan and Tom talk about Hitchcock's classic spy movie, NOTORIOUS, with Tony Lee Moral, author of three Alfred Hitchcock books, with a fourth, "Alfred Hitchcock: The Storyboards" available September 2022.

Hitchcock Spy Movies from a Historical Perspective with Kim Putland!

Hitchcock Spy Movies were the topic of a thesis by Kim Humphries Putland. We discuss how Hitchcock integrates world events into these movies.

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THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Podcast Episode

THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Join us as we venture into Scaramanga’s Funhouse in our decoding of the pre-title sequence to the 1974 James Bond movie, The Man With The Golden Gun.

 

Oceans, Beaches, oysters, champagne, a man in a suit on the beach – what? A  funhouse that’s not so fun, and  . . . a Golden Gun!

Join us as we venture into Scaramanga’s Funhouse in our decoding of the pre-title sequence to the 1974 James Bond movie, THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN.

We take it apart and Dan does an impersonation of Nick Nack!

Related Content

Vicky, Dan, and Tom examine the following from the pre-title sequence in The Man With The Golden Gun:

  • Maud Adams’ first of three James Bond movie appearances
  • The beautiful landscape of James Bond Island
  • Who is that suited man?  His name is Rodney.  Where have we seen him before?
  • What gun does Rodney use?
  • Nick Nack is a devious assistant
  • Scaramanga’s lair
  • The Fun House
  • The Golden Gun
  • What was inspired by The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari?
  • What is the tie-in to The Most Dangerous Game?
  • and More …

More Episodes

ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE – On Location – Wedding Reception and Bull Ring

Dan and Tom find two more ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE filming locations - Draco's mansion and the bullring.

James Bond’s CASINO ROYALE (2006) Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Join us today as we take a gamble getting Daniel Craig’s first outing as Bond as we look at the pre-title and title sequence of Casino Royale!

Gadgets in James Bond’s THUNDERBALL Decoded!

Join Dan, Tom and Vicky diving into the gadgets in THUNDERBALL!

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James Bond – The Daniel Craig Arc from CASINO ROYALE to SPECTRE!

Podcast Episode

James Bond – The Daniel Craig Arc from CASINO ROYALE to SPECTRE!

Join Dan Tom and a special guest, our agent in Montreal "Eddie," in looking at the Daniel Craig arc - get ready for NO TIME TO DIE!

 

Join Dan Tom and a special guest, our agent in Montreal “Eddie,” in looking at the Daniel Craig arc – get ready for NO TIME TO DIE!

We look at what we call the “connective tissue” holding the four Craig movies together: CASINO ROYALE, QUANTUM OF SOLACE, SKYFALL and SPECTRE!

Let’s go!

We are using the picture from the Apple TV show “Being James Bond”, coming September 7, 2021. (Source EPK-TV)

Feedback: Info@SpyMovieNavigator.com

 

In this episode we examine:

  • Bond’s age throughout the first four Daniel Craig movies
  • Callbacks to some scenes in those movies that may come back in play in No Time To Die
  • The role of the writers Purvis and Wade
  • How Ian Fleming influenced this story arc (and where he didn’t)
  • Some of the trailers for No Time To Die, with a bit of speculation
  • And More …

More Episodes

Steven Jay Rubin – The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia

Join Dan and Tom as they talk with author Steven Jay Rubin. The 4th edition of his book,  The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia  released on November 17, 2020.

YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE – Pre-Title Sequence Decoded

Join Dan, Tom & Vicky as they decode the pre-title sequence of You Only Live Twice!

Dalton As Bond With Film Prof/Author Dr. Cary Edwards

Today we are thrilled to talk with Dr. Cary Edwards who wrote the book on Timothy Dalton’s 2 Bond films called, “He Disagreed With Something That Ate Him” arguing that both films are a unique contribution to the series and form an important dialogue with the…

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Billion Dollar Brain – Decoded!

Podcast Episode

Billion Dollar Brain – Decoded!

Join Dan and Tom as they decode the third Harry Palmer movie with Michael Caine, based on the Len Deighton novels!

Harry Palmer, a cold Helsinki winter, virus-filled eggs, outdoor festivals, evil computer programs, a maniac billionaire, a double-cross – make up the story of the third Harry Palmer movie, Billion Dollar Brain!

Join Dan and Tom as they decode the third Harry Palmer movie with Michael Caine, based on the Len Deighton novels!

Lots of connections to other movies and some disagreement between Dan and Tom on this one!  Join the fun!

Do you have a comment?  Email us at info@SpyMovieNavigator.com or click here to get to our comment page.  Finally, on our website, you can click the red button that says “Send us a voicemail”.

Related Content

Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The stellar cast
  • The impact of the character names
  • Is Harry Palmer the anti-James Bond?
  • Potential ties to movies like Mission: Impossible II, Get Shorty, Diamonds Are Forever, Patton and others
  • The value of going to a 1960’s shoe store
  • Dan and Tom’s disagreements about this movie
  • General Midwinter’s rant
  • Computer punch cards
  • and more …

More Episodes

Q Planes (1939) – Historical Influences

Watch the Video Version of this podcast Join Dan and Tom as they pivot their analysis on the 1939 spy movie, Q PLANES. This movie was released just before the start of World War II and had some interesting historical…

Funeral in Berlin (1966) – Scene Analysis & Connections – Part 1

Watch Video Analysis & Review of Key Scenes Join Dan and Tom as they head to Germany to attend the Funeral in Berlin!   This 1966 movie is the second installment after The Ipcress File, with Michael Caine as Harry Palmer,…

Funeral in Berlin (1966) – Part 2 – Scene Analysis & Connections

Watch Video Analysis & Review of Key Scenes Join Dan and Tom as they finish up their look at Funeral in Berlin! 

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Keep up to date with our latest and greatest spy movie finds. (See our Privacy Policy)

Steven Jay Rubin – The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia

Podcast Episode

Steven Jay Rubin – The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia

Join Dan and Tom as they talk with author Steven Jay Rubin. The 4th edition of his book,  The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia  released on November 17, 2020.

 

Join Dan and Tom as they talk with author Steven Jay Rubin. The 4th edition of his book,  The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia  released on November 17, 2020 – it’s fantastic!

We discuss the process of putting this book together, including his interviews of the Who’s Who of the Bond world; Albert R. Broccoli, Harry Saltzman, Peter Hunt, George Lazenby and many others.

You’ll hear some great behind-the-scenes stories!  Lots of fun!

If you are a James Bond fan, you will definitely enjoy the discussion! It’s a must-listen!

 

 

 

Related Content

In our discussion with Steven, we talk about:

  • Great Behind-the-Scenes and back stories
  • Talks about his interviews with Albert R. Broccoli, Harry Saltzman, Peter Hunt, George Lazenby and more
  • Details his research and approach to writing the new version of his The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia

Join the fun!  This is entertaining all the way through!

You can order Steven’s new book, The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia here.


More Episodes

Gadgets in James Bond’s THUNDERBALL Decoded!

Join Dan, Tom and Vicky diving into the gadgets in THUNDERBALL!

James Bond’s A VIEW TO A KILL – Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Join agents Dan, Tom and Vicky as they decode and uncover new discoveries and connections in the pre-title sequence to A View to a Kill!

James Bond’s OCTOPUSSY Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Join Dan, Tom and Vicky as they decode and take apart the pre-title sequence of Octopussy!

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Funeral in Berlin (1966)

FUNERAL IN BERLIN (1966) continues the development of Len Deighton’s spy character, Harry Palmer, in the movies.  In the novels Len Deighton’s character did not have a name.  For the movies, they gave him the name, “Harry Palmer!”

Starring Michael Caine as Harry Palmer, we see lots of connections to James Bond, including key personnel like Harry Saltzman, the producer, Guy Coleman (who was in Thunderball) and more.

Join Dan and Tom as they head to Germany to attend the Funeral in Berlin!   This 1966 movie is the second installment after The Ipcress File.

  • Lots of Bond connections,
  • quips,
  • key scenes are explored from a fresh angle.

If a funeral could be fun, this is it!  Join us, won’t you?

Join the fun in Cracking the Code of FUNERAL IN BERLIN  – some interesting reveals!  Watch the two-part videos below for key scene analysis and commentaries, connections and more!

Spy Movie News Article – Sept 1 2020: NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET, THE KING’S MAN

Related: Spy Movie News Article – Sept 1 2020: NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET, THE KING’S MAN

Contributed by: Spy Movie Navigator

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Here's our September 1st, 2020, edition of Spy Movie News where we are Cracking the Code of Spy Movies with the latest updates on TENET, Mission: Impossible 7, and NO TIME TO DIE,  plus we look at some industry trends.

TENET

  • In breaking news, we have confirmed that TENET did open in England on August 26 and was planned to open in over 20 additional countries on that same date. And it has a scattered release plan through the September 18th release in Japan. It officially opens September 3rd in the United States, but early access showing started August 31st. 
  • Tom Cruise was seen going to the pre-screening of TENET in England, so there you go.
  • Our co-host in the UK, Vicky Hodges saw TENET the day it opened in the UK, August 26th.  We have a no-spoiler podcast out on it, released August 28th. Check it out, here. It's a fun 8 minutes and has no spoilers.
  • Variety.com reports that TENET had a strong opening for the weekend in Europe with box office sales at $53,000,000 for a film that cost $200 million to produce.   They quote Toby Emmerich, Warner Brothers Pictures Group chairman as saying: “We are off to a fantastic start internationally and couldn't be more pleased.”  See Variety.com for the full story. 

 Disney

  • Disney didn't wait to see what would happen with TENET or Disney's own, The New Mutants which they released last weekend. Disney pushed The King’s Man to 2021. 
  • Interestingly, they announced this the day before The New Mutants hit theaters. This does make one wonder if Disney plans to push back Black Widow from its November 6th release.   We're guessing ticket sales for TENET will have a big impact on that decision.
  • It also makes us wonder what 2021's release schedule will look like. Will all the movies that have been pushed to 2021 have an impact on the movies scheduled for later in 2021? Might they be pushed to 2022?  Mission: Impossible 7,  we're staring you down for an answer on this one. 

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7

  • Here's some Mission: Impossible 7 news.   They suffered a little set back after an expensive motorcycle stunt went wrong. Check cinemablend.com for all the news. A motorcycle stunt went wrong as the bike burst into flames, but the stuntman is OK. but it was a well planned and costly stunt that had been in the works for a long time.  And it is now a financial and time-frame set back for Mission: Impossible 7.  This movie is scheduled for release on November 19th, 2021. Reportedly, Tom Cruise was not too happy about the accident.  See Cinemablend.com again for more details. 
  •  In our August 1st edition of Spy Movie News, we mentioned that Mission: Impossible 7 wanted to blow up a 111-year-old bridge in Poland. Now here is an update.  Writer-director Chris McQuarrie said “Mission: Impossible says they would never harm icons or historical landmarks.  They were looking for a bridge that needed to come down somewhere in the world and they were contacted by Poland.  But never a monument. No historically significant monuments would be destroyed. But there is a possibility that a portion of the bridge which is now unsafe would need to come down. See empireonline.com/movies for more info. The Bottom Line is that Mission: Impossible is acting responsibly and working with Poland on what might be possible. 
  • Screenrant reports that Tom Cruise, a certified helicopter pilot, during a break, landed a helicopter near the 9th hole at a golf course in England so he could grab lunch at the clubhouse. How's that for a stunt? 
  • And here’s another real stunt.  Nme.com reports that Tom Cruise will jump off a motorcycle mid-air for a fabulous action stunt in Mission: Impossible 7.  He's like 160 feet in the air. Photos at Nme.com and also at thesun.co.uk.  #CruiseisCool.

NO TIME TO DIE

Let’s move on to NO TIME TO DIE.
  • From “The Spy Command”,  August 18th, 2020 edition: there hasn't been a whole lot of news for NO TIME TO DIE, but there has been enough to get fans interested. As usual, there are questions. 
  •  You see a lot of licensed product news like the Funko pops and usually, that means that the release is imminent for the film. However, as “The Spy Command” says, who knows if the licensees are really in the know about when the movie will release, so there's still always a question.
  • “The Spy Command” also reports that there was an investor's call by MGM with its investors and the chief operating officer said: “yeah, two releases in 2020 are scheduled, but there is a but, and who knows if these releases will slip.” There is always a but.
  • Indiewire.com reported that if there is another slip for NO TIME TO DIE, it is unlikely that the movie will be pushed to summer 2021.  There have been no EON Productions summer releases since Licence to Kill's release in July 1989.  That movie was not well received great release, coming in 4th at that time. It was the worst opening of any EON Productions Bond film.  So, it’s unlikely that it would be the summer of 2021.
  • Some things that will affect the release, of course, are:
  • worldwide statistics for the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The decisions countries are making concerning theaters opening or not.
  •  Billie Eilish’s recording of the NO TIME TO DIE theme song was a first for James Bond films.  It was recorded at her home studio and not in a traditional recording studio Read all about it at cinemablend.com
  • And also at cinemablend.com: there is a new image of Rami Malek's character, Safin, which was also released on Instagram. Check that out. It's pretty cool.
  • Radiotimes.com reports even this summer that Cary Fukunaga is not tweaking NO TIME TO DIE.  He says he had mentally and emotionally finished the film in the spring of 2020.   Read the full report at Radiotimes.com. 

INDUSTRY NEWS

  • In general news, some companies are moving filming locations to Canada due to COVID-19.  Other venues being looked at are the UK and Australia.  For The Last Duel, Ben Affleck, the producer and star, is doing this. Will we see more of this? Cnbc.com has an article on this topic.   Will this affect planned releases of movies in the fall of 2020?  We will see. 
  • And a belated Happy 90th Birthday to Sean Connery. Our first 007 from Eon Productions, who was also recently voted the best James Bond in a poll by radiotimes.com.  Timothy Dalton came in at #2 in the poll. 
  So that’s it for this edition of Cracking the Code of Spy Movie News.  Be sure to check out our website, SpyMovieNavigator.com, and our podcasts on your favorite podcast app,  we have a YouTube channel too.  Tell your friends about us. We’ll catch you in the next edition of Spy Movie News.  

Related Content

Spy Movie News Article – Sept 1 2020:  NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET,  THE KING’S MAN

Here's our September 1st, 2020, edition of Spy Movie News where we are Cracking the Code of Spy Movies with the latest updates on TENET, Mission: Impossible 7, and NO TIME TO DIE,  plus we look at some industry trends.

NO TIME TO DIE Sept. 3, 2020 Trailer – Analysis & Perspective!

Podcast Episode

NO TIME TO DIE Sept. 3, 2020 Trailer – Analysis & Perspective!

Join Dan and Tom and Vicki as they dive into the new No Time to Die trailer released September 3, 2020!  

 

Join Dan and Tom and Vicky as they dive into the new No Time to Die trailer released September 3, 2020!

The focus is “perspective” and how that works when dealing with “good” and “bad” here in the film, and how that could be handled.

So tune in now!

More Episodes

James Bond’s THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS Pre-Title Decoded!

Join undercover agents Dan, Tom and Vicky as they decode new discoveries and connections of the pre-title sequence in The Living Daylights!

Richard Maibaum Papers – James Bond – Curator Interview

We discuss the Richard Maibaum Papers, which are housed at the University of Iowa Library, with curator Pete Balestrieri.

No Time To Die Title Song by Billie Eilish – Reactions & Lyrics Analysis

Watch the Video Version of this podcast Join Dan and Tom as they dive into the lyrics of the title song for No Time To Die by Billie Eilish! James Bond is returning!

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Spy Movie News – Tenet, The King’s Man, Black Widow, & Red Notice – 8/11/2020 Update

Related: Spy Movie News – Tenet, The King’s Man, Black Widow, & Red Notice – 8/11/2020 Update

Related: 2020 Spy Movie release schedule – April 3 Update

Related: Spy Movie News Article for Oct 1 2020 – No Time To Die!

Contributed by:

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We have recorded this article as a podcast.  If you want to watch it,  click here. This article will update the status of the movies The King’s Man, Tenet, Black Widow, and Red Notice.  We last talked about these movies in this article from April. We'll also look at a couple of industry changes that will likely have an impact on movie going for the foreseeable future.

Tenet

(currently set for and August -September release depending on the location)

So, let’s start with Tenet.   This is the Christopher Nolan movie which is supposed to be the first tent pole movie released in the US during the pandemic.  What happens here will have ramifications for the industry as a whole. The release has been pushed numerous times as the movie industry is trying to figure out how to release a movie safely during the pandemic and in a manner in which consumers will still go to a theater. According to an article by Tom Brueggmann in Indiewire, the current plan for Tenet is a UK release date of August 26, 2020, and in 50 other territories between the 26th and 28th. China’s release date is still unknown, but the movie has been approved there. It will have a US release on September 3rd in select theaters. Currently, 45 states in the US permit indoor theaters to operate with some restrictions/safety precautions.  Cinemark, Regal, and AMC all have opening dates scheduled by the end of August with wide releases starting on August 21st.   Warner Brothers is re-releasing Inception as well.   From what I’ve read, you should probably watch Inception again before seeing Tenet.  So, as Brueggmann’s article states “even if California and New York couldn’t open and a few other areas besides, more than 80% of the population would still have the potential to see Tenet in an indoor theater.”   We’re eager to see how many people will actually go.  As Seth Rogan said about Tenet in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter: “For a while, it seemed like the answer was to kill his greatest fans,” Rogen told THR. “But that’s not the answer of today, it seems, so that’s good. But we have no idea. We don’t want to be the first to rush into anything.” We here are SpyMovieNavigator are watching this closely.

The King's Man

(Currently set for it's US release in September)

The next spy movie scheduled to be released is The King’s Man, the prequel to earlier Kingsman movies.  This is still scheduled for a September 18, 2020 release date in the US.  We can only imagine that what happens with Tenet will have a huge effect as to whether this date changes. In an article on this prequel on movieweb.com by Jon Fuge,  Director Matthew Vaughan said that this prequel will lay the foundations for Kingsman 3. Vaughan says: "We've put seeds for what's going to happen in Kingsman 3 all the way back into this. And it's going to be very different." So, while The King’s Man is a prequel it is being used to set up Kingsman 3 (this sounds like Star Wars numbering here).   What I would have called Kingsman 3 is this prequel, maybe you can think of it as Kingsman 1?  Thus the 4th Kingsman movie would be Kingsman 3?  My head hurts when they do stuff like this.

INDUSTRY NEWS

In industry news, two big recent announcements may change theatrical releases for a long time, one by Disney and one by AMC and Universal. Will Black Widow be affected by these announcements?

DISNEY WILL RELEASE MULAN ON DISNEY+ AND NOT IN MOST THEATERS

The first is an acknowledgement of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the movie business.  Disney announced last week that Mulan will no longer have its initial release in theaters.  Instead, they will be releasing it on September 3rd on Disney Plus, but not as a regular part of the service.    In addition to the monthly $6.99 Disney Plus monthly subscription price, if you want to see this movie, you can rent it for $29.99. It will be released theatrically in markets in which access to Disney Plus is not available.  That means you can see it in a theater if you are in a country that doesn’t have Disney Plus. Initially, we were surprised by the price point.   However, after doing some research, we think the $30 rental price is a fair price for a family movie.   According to Statista.com, in 2019 the average ticket price at North American movie theaters was $9.16 with AMC coming in higher than that.   Let’s make the math easy and call it $10.00 a ticket.   A family of 3 would spend $30 just to see the movie in a theater, not counting the prices of any food and drink you might get.  So the $30 price point seems reasonable.   Assuming that same number of people who would have gone to the theater buy into this, Disney will make more money than if this was in a theater.   A 2016 article on theweek.com says that US theaters end up paying the studios somewhere around 60% of their proceeds from the box office, up to 90% for a first-run movie.  So to Disney’s bottom line, they would net about the equivalent of just under 5 people going the theater to see the movie at the 60% number. Plus, you need the Disney Plus subscription.  Given the estimate of over $1billion in the expected global box office, this has to really hurt theaters. According to an article in Variety, Disney CEO Bob Chapek says that this is a one-time event.  “We’re looking at Mulan as a one-off as opposed to saying there is some new business windowing model that we’re looking at. “ This quote by Chapek is intriguing as Black Widow was pushed back from May 2020 to November 6, 2020, in the US.  MCU fans are now asking Disney to do the same release to Digital strategy for Black Widow as Disney is doing with Mulan.  We’ll see if the “one-off” is a reality or just too good a deal for Disney to not make part of its release model.

UNIVERSAL AND AMC KISS AND MAKE UP

The second bit of general movie news is that prior to this Disney announcement, Universal and AMC made a deal to try to quell the fears of straight-to-digital killing the movie theater market.  After Universal released Trolls World Tour on digital on the same day as theaters after the pandemic hit, AMC banned Universal movies from its theaters.   This new deal mends that fence. Universal movies will be in AMC theaters exclusively for at least 3 weekends or 17 days, instead of the old model of 70 days.  Universal can keep a movie exclusively in theaters for longer than that, but 17 days is the new minimum.   Movies will hit the digital marketplace much sooner, but AMC can still survive on the new release. An August 4th article on CNBC.com by Sarah Whitten talks about how Cinemark and Regal which combined have more theaters than AMC don’t have, nor do they want this deal AMC struck.  So this might get interesting. It’s also interesting when juxtaposing this news with the Disney news which happened a week later.  First, as we said, a theater may have to pay up to 90% of a first release's box office to the studio.   At 17 days, they won’t be able to make that much profit from the movie before they lose exclusivity.  Now, they may be able to keep the movie in the theater while it’s available on digital . And I assume they’d have to pay Universal much less than 90% once digital becomes competition.  That said, I’d rather see Black Widow, The Kings Man, or No Time To Die on a big screen.  They are visual movies.  So, let’s hope this deal helps theaters stay afloat in these changing market conditions.    Second, with Disney charging for Mulan separate from their subscription pricing, how can movie theaters compete with this?   We’re assuming this “one-off” isn’t going to end up as a one-off and Disney does this more often, and possibly with Black Widow.   How will the movie theater chains react? Times are changing and it is not just because of the pandemic.  The combined effects of digital distribution with the impact of the pandemic are likely to change the movie industry to a large degree. We think the studios want to accelerate the move to digital and the pandemic is giving them the excuse to do so.  So stay tuned, we’ll keep you posted.

RED NOTICE

Finally, the release movie called Red Notice has been pushed to 2021.  It doesn’t have a release date yet. So, there you have the latest news on the current state of spy movies for 2020.  We’ll be shocked if it doesn’t change again with the pandemic. But we hope we get to see at least a couple of these movies this year.

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THUNDERBALL – A Deep Dive – Part 1

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THUNDERBALL – A Deep Dive – Part 1

Join Dan and Tom as they take a deep dive into the James Bond 1965 film, THUNDERBALL, starring Sean Connery, Claudine Auger, Adolfo Celi.

A Listener: “Really Loved it!  You guys do a Good Job Explaining the film in Detail I even love Tom talking about the original No Time to Die in the UK in 1958 wow!!!!”

Join Dan and Tom as they take a deep dive into the James Bond 1965 film, THUNDERBALL, starring Sean Connery, Claudine Auger, Adolfo Celi.

THUNDERBALL was originally slated to be the first James Bond movie.   Dan and Tom dive into things that surround key scenes, and events that really happened in the world that influenced this film, including the 1958 movie, THE SILENT ENEMY.

Join the fun in Cracking the Code of THUNDERBALL – some interesting reveals! Part 1 of a 2-part podcast.

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MY SPY (2020) – A Quick-Fire Look

Podcast Episode

MY SPY (2020) – A Quick-Fire Look

Join Dan and Tom in Cracking the Code of My Spy - the first spy movie released by a major studio in 2020 - and it's not in theaters!  It's on Amazon Prime!

Join Dan and Tom in Cracking the Code of My Spy – the first spy movie released by a major studio in 2020 – and it’s not in theaters!  It’s on Amazon Prime!

The Quick-Fire Look will not giveaway the movie, but we will look at certain revelations and things to look for in the movie so you can enjoy it even more!  Join us in our My Spy review!

All our Podcasts are at: https://spymovienavigator.com/spy-movie-podcasts/

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No Time To Die is now scheduled for a November 2020 release, after the April 2020 delay due to the worldwide pandemic.  

Plenty of speculation of what will happen in the film – we have about 6 podcasts out on No Time To Die already!  The biggest question is:  What will happen to Bond?   Will he survive?  Die? Be Dying?  Will someone big, who we are used to, die?

James Bond has been around since Ian Fleming first published "Casino Royale" in 1953.   He has been on television with Barry Nelson playing an American version of Jimmy Bond, in the 1954 production of Casino Royale.  The first actor to play Bond on screen.   Then Eon Productions took over striking a deal with Fleming to produce James Bond movies, and Dr. No was the first one they produced, released in 1962. It was an immediate hit.    About $1 million to produce, and it grossed over $59 million!

Eon continued to produce James Bond movies, and No Time To Die will be their 25th film in the franchise. Over the decades, they grossed at the box office over $7 billion.  And then there are licensing fees, DVD and Blue Ray sales and more that bring in revenue.

The formula, although changed gradually over the decades, has worked well for Eon Productions.   It has made them a lot of money, has gained them tons of recognition around the world, and continues to be a juggernaut.   Skyfall (2012), their 23rd movie, grossed over $1 billion at the box office.   And Spectre, in 2015, grossed over $878 million dollars.   So, this franchise is strong and continues to grow in popularity and in making money.   Which is a good thing.

So, now we have No Time to Die, the 25th entry, scheduled.   And speculations abound.  Many serious reports that Bond will survive, and others that he will die.   Now, if you are Eon Productions, which has successfully tweaked Bond’s character over the decades, reducing his misogynist tendencies and womanizing, and make him more in tune with the brave new world.  

And, as of the last film, Spectre (not one of the fans' favorite films in general), they still grossed over $879 million. Not bad, right?

 

You're in a meeting with Eon.  Where should the franchise head?

So, now suppose you are sitting in one of the Eon meetings where they are deciding what to do next.   Are you raising your hand saying, “I think what is best for the business is if we kill off Bond in our next release?”

Well, if not you, who?  Danny Boyle?  And what is the argument?

“I think in Bond 25, we should kill off Bond and start afresh with a new 007 – perhaps a woman.   It would fit the social narrative of our cultures now, and we can gain a large part of the female audience that we lack so much now.   The male audience will continue to come to see the “Bond” movies because they are used to it and will want to see how the new 007 develops. We can merchandise lots of clothing and other items around the new 007 who is female.   We won’t lose out massive Bond audience if we do this right.”

What happens if you're wrong?

Well.   What if you DO lose your audience – your multi-billion-dollar business might be competing with Charlies’ Angels instead of dominating the spy movie world.   What happens if the new 007 is NOT accepted?  IF people want Ian Fleming’s Bond still around – after all, THAT is the whole basis of the James Bond franchise – the original Ian Fleming manuscripts.

 Yes – James Bond has changed over the decades as we have said. He is becoming more of a good social citizen.   But we must remember, a spy by nature is two-faced.   When we talked to Roberto Schaefer, Director of Photography for Quantum of Solace, he said as much.   A spy is something else in the known world and an undercover assassin in the dark underworld.   So, how much do we want him to change IN the dark underworld where his business takes him? Do we want a completely different spy? A nicer spy in this dark world?  

Then what?

Basically, what else do we demand to be changed in the character of James Bond?   Let’s make a list.

  1. He is still too much a misogynist.  So, we must get rid of that.
  2. He still does not have enough respect for women.  So, we must change that
  3. He has been a cold-hearted killer.   Shooting and killing people who are unarmed, like Professor Dent on Dr. No.  We can’t have that.
  4. Bond knows how to do everything.  He can fly any craft, drive any vehicle, get out of any jam, disarm bombs – is anyone THAT good?  He needs to be more realistic. 
  5. And on what an agent makes, how can Bond afford the best clothes, the best food and drink, the best of everything?  MI6 isn’t paying for all that stuff, are they? Unrealistic.   Need a more grounded agent – grounded in the real world.

And if we change all of this in Bond, no one will accept this new iteration of Bond.   So, maybe we switch to a whole new spy.  A female “Bond-like” character.

This is all possible. With the delay of No Time to Die, we have more time to speculate. 

Our thoughts

Now, if it were SpyMovieNavigator making this decision, we would do one of two things.

Leave Bond alone.  People for decades have been loving James Bond in the movies, so leave him alone. Sure, tweak some things as you have done in the past.   The faithful audience can accept that people, even spies, change over time.    And James Bond in the movies, HAS changed over time, and the last couple of Bond movies were the highest-grossing box office Bond films ever.   So, there is plenty of reason to stay the course. If you are going to introduce another MI6 agent to take Bond’s place - a complete replacement – then do it as an experiment.  Do NOT kill off Bond.  Ian Fleming left us hanging at the end of his novel, "From Russia With Love", not knowing if Bond would survive the poison unleashed upon him by Klebb.   In No Time to Die, do a similar thing then, if you must.  Leave us hanging.

If you KILL off Bond, and the new agent replacement for 007 is NOT accepted, what do you do?   Now, if this were science fiction, you have no problem.   Because no one ever dies in science fiction.  You can write anyone back into the next script. 

But this is not science fiction.

Where have we seen this before?

But wait.   Sir Arthur Conan Doyle did it with Sherlock Holmes!  Sherlock Holmes died in "The Adventure of the Final Problem", after falling off Reichenbach Falls.  Sherlock Holmes.  Dead.   And fans did not like it!  They were outraged!

So, after pressure from his publisher and the public, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle “brought back” Sherlock Holmes in "The Hound of the Baskervilles", which was a prequel to Holmes' death in "The Final Problem". So, he really was not brought back from the dead.   Yet. They COULD do the same with Bond. Bring back Bond, if the new non-Bond 007 is a flop – in a series of prequels.  

But Sir Arthur Conan Doyle finally did bring Holmes back to life, in a series of short stories, "The Return of Sherlock Holmes".

So, maybe EON Productions can bring back James Bond in a similar manner.   He dies, let’s say, in No Time to Die.  The movie-going public is outraged and rejects the new 007 in the next film released.   A board meeting.   Eon decides, we must bring Bond back.  And, they fabricate a screenplay that does just that.  It is possible.

And would the public accept it?  Yes, of course!  They did for Sherlock Holmes and they will for Bond!  

And that takes us to ... To die or not to die?  That is the question . . . that may not matter!

So, it seems:

  1. If Eon Productions kills off Bond in No Time to Die, they could probably bring him back to life somehow in a future movie, that is either a prequel or he is resurrected and is alive again to “Die Another Day.”  Or, perhaps the new 007 is even more popular than James Bond, and he remains dead as long as the money is rolling in. 
  2. If they leave us hanging, with Bond appearing to die, or dying at the end, then Eon could easily choose to do what they want next.
  3. If Bond survives, then life goes on.  And so does the Bond franchise.

So, it looks like Eon Productions can do whatever they want in No Time to Die, and all will be fine for them.   Sure, some rough waters could be ahead, but they can always return to calm seas.  

For us James Bond 007 fans, let’s see what they do.  But, whatever they do, let’s just chill out.  In fiction, where you write it and it is done, anything can happen. 

 

 

   

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Part 2: A Talk with QUANTUM OF SOLACE Director of Photography, Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC

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Part 2: A Talk with QUANTUM OF SOLACE Director of Photography, Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC

Join Dan and Tom as they spend a couple of hours with Roberto Schaefer, Director of Photography for Quantum of Solace! This is Part 2 of a 2 part podcast with Roberto!

Join Dan and Tom as they spend a couple of hours with Roberto Schaefer, Director of Photography for Quantum of Solace!  Roberto has been the Director of Photography on some great films, including Finding Neverland, Monster’s Ball, Stay and many other great films.

In Part 2, we talk with Roberto about the team that makes a movie, a dive deeper into Quantum of Solace with some reveals(!) and lots more!  This is Part 2 of a 2-part podcast with Roberto!

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  • What Roberto is doing today
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Spy Movie Navigator First Anniversary Show

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Spy Movie Navigator First Anniversary Show

Join Dan and Tom as they celebrate their First Anniversary of SpyMovieNavigator.com and their podcast and video shows, Cracking the Code of Spy Movies!

Join Dan and Tom as they celebrate their First Anniversary of SpyMovieNavigator.com and their podcast and video shows, Cracking the Code of Spy Movies!

Some colleagues leave anniversary messages too!   Listen in and tell your friends!  Subscribe to our show through your favorite podcast app, like Apple, Google, Spotify, Overcast, Podbean and virtually any other podcast app!

And THANK YOU for getting us to our First Anniversary!

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A Talk with QUANTUM OF SOLACE Director of Photography, Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC – Part 1

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A Talk with QUANTUM OF SOLACE Director of Photography, Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC – Part 1

Join Dan and Tom as they spend a couple of hours with Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC - Director of Photography for Quantum of Solace!  Roberto has been the Director of Photography on some great films, including Finding Neverland, Monster's Ball, Stay and many other great films.    This is Part 1 of a 2-part podcast.

Join Dan and Tom as they spend a couple of hours with Roberto Schaefer, ASC, AIC – Director of Photography for Quantum of Solace!  Roberto has been the Director of Photography on some great films, including Finding Neverland, Monster’s Ball, Stay and many other great films.

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Q Planes (1939) – Historical Influences

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Q Planes (1939) – Historical Influences

Join Dan and Tom as they pivot their analysis on the 1939 spy movie, Q PLANES. This movie was released just before the start of World War II and had some interesting historical ties. Take a listen.

Join Dan and Tom as they Crack of Code of the history that surrounded & impacted directly the making of the 1939 movie, Q Planes (Clouds Over Europe).

Our first podcast on Q Planes called, Q Planes (Clouds Over Europe) is an analysis of the movie, scene by scene.  In this new podcast, a different approach is taken, looking at historical events (the oncoming of World War Two, etc.) that directly affected the making of the film, looking at some very interesting connections!

The real world does find its way into spy movies!

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Q Planes (1939) – Clouds Over Europe (US)


Q Planes movie posterQ Planes
is a 1939 spy movie.  Clouds Over Europe was its name in the United States.

It is about a British Agent and his mission to discover who is trying to steal top-secret experimental equipment.  The focus of this search is around the attempted theft of a new supercharger which should increase the flight speed of aircraft.

Above all, this light-hearted, spy comedy delivers a message to the world about threats. Released about 6 months before World War II, it was, in part, a propaganda movie.

Earlier movies influenced Q Planes. This movie influenced future spy movies such as James Bond and Mission: Impossible.

Our curated videos below show these influencers via video clips and descriptions. Also, check out our podcasts which discuss this movie in more detail.

WHERE TO STREAM:

  • It is available on Amazon Prime (Prime Link). (There may be a cost)
  • In addition, it is on YouTube: (YouTube Link)

Q Planes (1939) – aka Clouds Over Europe

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Q Planes is a spy comedy, treating a top-secret invention the British were testing just prior to World War II and what they had to do to keep the invention and information about it out of enemy hands.   In the US, it is also known as Clouds Over Europe. It is more spy than comedy, but it has a comedic element.   Starring Ralph Richardson, Lawrence Olivier, and Valerie Hobson.

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Find out what we are doing at SpyMovieNavigator.com and how we are building a Worldwide Community of Spy Movie Fans! Dan Silvestri and Tom Pizzato explain the roots of SpyMovieNavigator and how this whole thing got started, and how we…

Alfred Hitchcock’s NOTORIOUS Decoded!

Today we decode a Hitchcock classic, NOTORIOUS with our special co-host Bill Koenig of The Spy Command.

<em>The 39 Steps</em>

The 39 Steps, directed by Alfred Hitchcock is considered by many to the first spy movie ever made! If you came to our site as a Bond, Bourne, Hunt, Smiley, or other spy movie fan, you might not have seen…

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The Spy Next Door (2010)

Podcast Episode

The Spy Next Door (2010)

Join Dan and Tom on their Cracking the Code of Spy Movies show. In this episode, they uncover some hidden connections in this fun comedy/spy movie for the whole family, The Spy Next Door!

This movie stars:

  • Jackie Chan as Bob Ho
  • Billie Ray Cyrus as Coltan James
  • George Lopez as Glaze
  • Amber Valletta as Gillian
  • Madeline Carrol as Farren
  • Will Shadley as Ian
  • Alina Foley as Nora

Related Content

In today’s show, we break down examples of where The Spy Next Store has been influenced by other spy movies.

  • The gadget closet in Kingsman: The Secret Service
  • Where the movie The Russians are Coming, The Russians are Coming is mimicked
  • The Jet Pack in Thunderball and Never Say Never Again
  • A shot in Dr. No which is very similar to one in The Spy Next Door.
  • A scene that highlights Parkour, like in Casino Royale.
  • An escape scene reminiscent of Licence to Kill.
  • A mole in the CIA, which we’ve seen with Jim Phelps in Mission: Impossible, Bill Haydon in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, among others
  • Bob Ho is retired and brought back in, like George Smiley in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, and James Bond in a few movies, including the upcoming NO TIME TO DIE
  • Musical cues influenced by the James Bond series
  • A line about knowing women that reminds us of Thunderball
  • A call-out to Octopussy
  • An agent gets paid off to help a criminal escape like in Licence to Kill
  • Gadgets galore
  • and more!

More Episodes

MY SPY (2020) – A Quick-Fire Look

Watch the Video Version of this podcast Join Dan and Tom in Cracking the Code of My Spy - the first spy movie released by a major studio in 2020 - and it's not in theaters!  It's on Amazon Prime!

No. 1 of the Secret Service – Decoded!

Dan and Tom break down NO 1. OF THE SECRET SERVICE, a goofy 1977 spy movie that spoofs spy movies, especially the James Bond series.

RED NOTICE: A Quick-Fire Review – No Spoilers!

Join us as we’re Cracking the Code of the just released Netflix movie Red Notice. No Spoilers!

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Did the title Q Planes come from Q-Ships?

The movie Q Planes got it's title post-production.   It is assumed the name was derived from the Q-Ships that were popular in World War I. These were freighters or steamer designed to look like non-military ships that would be easy targets for German U-boats. The idea was to get the U-boat to surface, and then the Q-ship would reveal its guns and blast away. In the movie Q Planes, no one ever does this with one of the planes. Nor is the term Q Planes ever used in the film!  The title appears to have been thought of more for marketing to UK audiences than for how it relates to the plot. The British public loved Q-ships in World War I, but they were not terribly effective according to some historians, and even less effective in World War Two. The designation “Q” came from the ships being outfitted in Queensland, Ireland, and it helped promote the idea of “Q” being a designation for taking something ordinary and outfitting it to be a deadly weapon. This clip lets you see a real Q-Ship.  It's old footage showing the troops and a Q-ship in action. RELATED CONTENT:

Q Planes and The Nelson Touch

When we at Spy Movie Navigator watch spy movies, we try to find where a movie may influence or was influenced by a real-world event or another spy movie. Happily, two things from this 11-second clip give us one of each type of influence. Specifically, Q Planes delivers with a phrase right at the end of this clip ("The Nelson Touch") that has real-world historical significance.  Additionally, we get one phrase that may have influenced the Mission: Impossible series of movies and TV.
  • "You're acting against instructions" - Major Hammond's boss tells him "Unofficially, of course, you understand. I'll give you every facility, but if he finds you out, you're acting against instructions."
    • This instantly brings a 20th and 21st Century spy movie fan to the Mission: Impossible TV and movie series.  "As always, should you or any of your IM Force be caught or killed, the Secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions."
    • Does this line get it's birth from the movie Q Planes?  Remember, this movie came out in 1939.  The "Mission: Impossible" TV show didn't happen for another 27 years.
  • Q Planes and "The Nelson Touch" -  Major Hammond says "The Nelson Touch" in response to the above directive.  This phrase brings a real-world reference into the movie.  It refers to Lord Horatio Nelson and what he initially described as one of his battle strategies.  It's great to see a historical reference in this type of movie.  Q Planes use of the phrase The Nelson Touch brings us to two different eras of history and two different wars.  We discuss this in more detail in our Q Planes podcast.
So, check out this clip and see if you agree with us. RELATED CONTENT

Got a cigarette? What Hammond asks in Q Planes

In this short scene, we see a trope that has been used in many spy movies.  In fact, we see it in spy movies from Hitchcock thrillers through Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible and naturally, many James Bond movies.  Of course, we're talking about the "Got a cigarette" Spy to Spy password conversation to validate to the other person you are who they think you are. In this case, Hammond asks man: "Got a cigarette?" The man gives him the cigarette.  However,  in reality, it’s a Comm or a note wrapped around the cigarette. The note says "The supercharger is the enemy's objective. They may know of proposed flight from secret agent here." This is a very important scene for the movie.  The note tells Hammond that he was right about the supercharger. Therefore, Hammond knows he has to remove it before the next test flight.  Thank goodness that note was written on that cigarette.  What would he have done if it wasn't? We think Leslie Bradley was the actor playing the man Hammond got the note from.  He was also the assistant in the scene in Hammond's office.  His role was uncredited and it was such a brief shot of his face. Therefore, although we're not certain it was him, we believe it was.  The uniform he had on said "Barrett & Ward" which is the airplane company who's airplanes went missing.   So, even though he was passing notes, he looked like he worked for the airplane company. Just as any good spy would. RELATED CONTENT

The Lost and Overlooked Bonds

Contributed by: Daniel Silvestri and Tom Pizzato of SpyMovieNavigator.com

Posted on
James Bond has been big for decades!  Spies still rule movies, and James Bond still rules spies!  There have been six actors who have played James Bond so far in the EON Production James Bond 007 movies.  Hundreds of articles and polls rank these actors as to who is the best, with rankings from one to sixThere is some consensus that people like Sean Connery the best.  Daniel Craig is ranked highly as well And, there are those who love Pierce Brosnan, and others who adore Roger Moore. Many times, what influences a person’s rankings or favorite Bond is the era in which they grew up. If you grew up with Pierce, then a lot of people like Pierce and so on. As a result, that means that there are two who are the lost and overlooked Bonds.  We would like to concentrate on these “forgotten” Bonds. Namely, George Lazenby from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, and Timothy Dalton from The Living Daylights  and Licence to Kill 

Is George Lazenby - A lost and Overlooked Bond?

George Lazenby wearing a tux - headshotOn Her Majesty’s Secret Service is just one of the best Bond stories Fleming ever wroteAnd while bringing it to film, EON Productions stuck very closely to the Fleming text. George's only acting experience had been in television commercials.  Still, he landed the role after Sean Connery decided to leave the franchise.

The Criticism

There is a loof criticism swirling about that George Lazenby was a poor Bond, that his acting was terrible, that his characterization of Bond was weak. However, we think that this is misguided.  In our opinion, George is one of the lost and overlooked Bonds who deserves more credit than he gets.  We think George did a wonderful job as Bond.  He was surrounded by an outstanding cast spearheaded by Diana Rigg (Tracy di Vincenzo) and Gabriele Ferzetti (Draco, Tracy’s father)The movie was well done.  It has great cinematography and wonderful locations selected in Portugal and Switzerland 

George Lazenby's Talent

George Lazenby was a believable, emotional, real-person Bond: much like Fleming wrote Bond. For example, look at the scene  at Draco’s birthday party at the bull ring.  Bond follows Tracy down the stairs and speaks with her just outside the bull ring.  Lazenby's acting is just spot-on, he's a believable guy. He's a guy, not just a spy guy.   James Bond (George Lazenby) and Tracy (Diana Rigg) in the barn   And when Bond and Tracy are hiding in the barn, and Bond asks Tracy to marry him. We think this is just a perfect scene – well played.  Diana Rigg certainly elevates the emotions and acting here.   George Lazenby as James Bond - see his expression when he looks at Tracy's dead body   In the last scene, he is cradling his dead wife in his arms in the car after she is killed.  George is just outstandingWe believe is a very real Bond.  He's a very believable spy who is also a human being.  Lazenby gives a very consistent portrayal of Bond throughout this production.   

Our Thoughts On George Lazenby

Lazenby should have continued to do more Bond films, but he received advice from agents or friends that he should move onAnd he didThat is too bad because we think he would have been better and better as Bond, and a very solid contribution to the history of the franchiseGeorge Lazenby, at the time of this writing, is still active.  He participated in the 50th Anniversary of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service celebration held in Portugal and Switzerland in 2019, and is active on Twitter at https://twitter.com/lazenbyofficial  We truly believe that George Lazenby is one of the lost and overlooked Bonds.  That is unfortunate because we really liked his performance in the role.

Is Timothy Dalton - a lost and overlooked Bond?

Timothy Dalton wearing a tux - headshotAfter Roger Moore left the Bond franchise having done seven James Bond films, Timothy Dalton stepped in as the next James Bond, for the 1987 film, The Living DaylightsHis take on the role was to bring back the Fleming-esque elements of Bond – the blunt instrument of the government – the tough, rough assassin who is dedicated to Queen and Country.   The transition from a very light Bond portrayed by Roger Moore, with a more tongue-in-cheek approach, lots of funny quips, more humor than we have seen ion any other Bond – to Timothy Dalton’s Bond was like Evel Knievel leaping across Grand Canyon on a motorcycle – a huge challenge.    In short, after seven Bond films with Moore, the viewing public might not have been ready for this take on Bond. Dalton played a very serious James Bond – with few quips, few smiles, and a very hard-nosed focus on getting the job done, and in a way that was a very believable approach to how a spy in the real-world night workThe missions were more down-to-earth too: transporting a defecting spy from the Russians to the British in The Living Daylights, and capturing a South American drug lord in Licence to Kill.  This is stuff that really happens in the real world – not dealing with some demented, super-megalomaniacal enemy who wants to rule the world. Although in real life we have some instances of that.     We like that “normal” approach to the spy world – which is more realistic.  However, we have enjoyed the world domination theme as well in the other films  With Dalton, you can see several things which stand out in his acting: 

Facial Expressions

For instance, his facial expressions are exactly that – they express a lot to the viewer in just a few short seconds.  This is very difficult to doSome great examples of this are: 
    • In The Living Daylights:

Timothy Dalton looking for revenge after Saunder's death • Saunders gets killed and Bond runs to his side. A balloon blows in with "Smiert Spionom" written on it.  Dalton's angry face says it all - he will retaliate.  

• Similarly, during the entire scene with Pushkin in the hotel room where Bond is threatening him with his gun.  Dalton has perfect facial expressions and body movement. 

    • In Licence to Kill:

Timothy Dalton's expression when looking at Della after her death 

When Bond finds Della's body 

 

 

And then finds Felix in the body bag - his face just says it all - terrific acting.

 

 • His facial expression when M is talking to Bond at the Hemingway House, revoking his license to kill is top-notch.

• When Bond tells Sanchez about potential traitors and Sanchez says he was right and got the guy, and Bond says, “Only one?”  Again, lots of potential dialogue delivered in a couple of words and great facial communications which substitutes for more linePerfect.

In the scene where Sanchez dies.  Bond is wounded and bleeding.  Sanchez, after saying “You could have had it all” goes up in flames. Examine Bond’s face – you feel the pain, you feel the tension.   

Body Movement

Similarly, Timothy Dalton’s body movements are spot on.  In other words, he walks, he fights, and he runs just like what we think a normal human being would be like 
    • In Licence to Kill:
      • When Bond is walking with Hawkins through Mallory Square in Key West on the way to the Hemingway House to meet M. Bond which Bond did not know that's where they were going at the time.  However,  he moves like a normal personNatural, walking, and walking. 
      • And, when he's on the boat with Sharkey going to Wavecrest’s warehouse and research center – again, great facial expressions, and great, natural body movement. 
      • And, when he gets off the boat at the Barrelhead Bar in Bimini – again, perfect movement, perfect facial expressions, and inside the bar, his face says it allSo powerful.
    • In The Living Daylights, as above, with the Pushkin scene Dalton's body movement is just what you think it should be. And, as you're watching, you do not think about it. This is the pointThis entire scene is Dalton at his bestLove it! 

Our Thoughts On Timothy Dalton

These are just a few examplesDalton did a great job as Bond and we wish he would have done more Bond moviesFor a variety of reasons it was not to be.  This was partially due to delays in the next release (6 years).  Some licensing issues and rumors that lower box office numbers had something to do with it.  But, Dalton himself says, they approached him to do GoldenEye. However, they wanted a 5 movie deal.  As a result, Dalton thought that would be the rest of his life and turned them down.   See this article in Esquire where he talks about this very point.    In our opinion, Timothy is the other lost and overlooked Bonds who deserves more credit than he gets.

Bravo Gentlemen

In short, these overlooked and mostly forgotten Bonds deserve an honored place in Bond movie folklore, performance, and durabilityThey have survived the years, and more people now think that their work should be appreciated as part of the James Bond 007 movie franchise  Therefore, we salute both George Lazenby and Timothy Dalton as rightful Bonds!  What do you think?

Jenkins is almost run down

The villains almost run Jenkins down

In this scene from Q Planes, the jig appears to be up for Jenkins.  Here, Jenkins is almost run down by a car as the villains try to kill him.  However, Major Hammond just happens to be at the scene and saves him.  Hammond's ubiquitous umbrella is used to save the day for Jenkins.  What a creative use of the umbrella here. However, Jenkins' has only been given a short respite from death as we see later in the movie. As we know, Jenkins is "working" for Barrett and Ward.  However, in reality, he is working for the Northern Salvage Company.  This German company appears to be a front for the German government.  Predictably, things don't go well for him at Northern Salvage and his days are numbered.

A Parallel in Atomic Blonde 

There are numerous examples of people being run down by vehicles in spy movies.   One excellent example comes from the 2017 movie, Atomic Blonde.   In the opening scene of this movie, a man is trying to escape his pursuers.  He’s running and climbing over fences. Unfortunately for him, there was no Major Hammond there to pull him away before the front of the car did its death-invoking deed.  However, the first impact doesn't kill him.  Therefore, we get to see him run over a second time. One difference in Q Planes is that Jenkins isn’t running.  Instead, he is darting around, looking paranoid before the car tries to run him down. RELATED CONTENT
Drinking with Bond – Literally!

Podcast Episode

Drinking with Bond – Literally!

Join Dan and Tom and they literally mix some Bond cocktails as they discuss the wide variety of drinks of James Bond in the Ian Fleming novels.

Join Dan and Tom and they literally mix some Bond cocktails as they discuss the wide variety of drinks that James Bond 007 imbibes in throughout the Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels.

Old fashioneds? Irish coffee?  Stingers?  Join them in Cracking the Code of the James Bond drinks in the Ian Fleming novels!  Have a Bondian cocktail along with them as you listen safely from home!

Related Content

How many of these drinks from the James Bond novels have you tried?  We discuss them all, letting you know how to mix your own:

  • Vodka Martini
  • Vesper Martini
  • Whisky
  • Bourbon
  • Champagne
  • Negroni
  • Americano
  • Irish Coffee
  • Stinger
  • Old Fashioned

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James Bond – The Daniel Craig Arc from CASINO ROYALE to SPECTRE!

Join Dan Tom and a special guest, our agent in Montreal "Eddie," in looking at the Daniel Craig arc - get ready for NO TIME TO DIE!

No Time To Die Title Song by Billie Eilish – Reactions & Lyrics Analysis

Watch the Video Version of this podcast Join Dan and Tom as they dive into the lyrics of the title song for No Time To Die by Billie Eilish! James Bond is returning!

THE SPY WHO LOVED ME Pre-Title Sequence Decoded!

Join Dan, Tom and Vicky for a fun outing decoding one of the BEST pre-title sequences of any Bond movie! The Spy Who Loved Me of course!

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