Thursday, May 11, 2017


Octopussy ~ Confession time, I've never seen Octopussy in its entirety until fairly recently. I didn't see it in the theater, even though I was in college by then and could have. I guess at that point I just didn't care any more about Bond.

By the time Octopussy came out I had spent the seventies watching James Bond on ABC movies of the week. I loved them, watched them every time, edited or not. I had even been lured to the library to read the source material by Ian Fleming, being chastised by the librarian, bless her heart, that I was too young (junior high school) for "that trash." Shame on me!

But as far as the movies go, I had long before figured out that Sean Connery was the man, and that Roger Moore in his ridiculous indestructible tuxedo was only playing it for laughs. That said of course, Live and Let Die remains a favorite guilty pleasure. It would finally take both Duran Duran and Grace Jones to get me into a theater with Bond and Moore in A View to a Kill, but I think we all know what a mistake that would be.

Like many Bond films 'based' on Fleming work, the jump from page to screen is just cray-cray. Only the title and character are lifted from the short story collection "Octopussy and The Living Daylights," although a scene from another story therein, "The Property of a Lady," is included in the film. Even as a sniggering teenager I thought Fleming's femme fatale names were a bit much, and 'Octopussy' was just waaay over the top.

The movie comes from a time when Bond was mad camp, constantly trying to one up itself from the last entry. Seriously one could put a bat-costumed Adam West in some of these situations and it would be more serious. A tale of Faberge eggs, killer circuses, and a smuggler named Octopussy, it just does not hold my attention well. I think I would rather watch the non-canon remake of Thunderball, Never Say Never Again, released in the same year, at least that was exciting. This one breaks a cardinal Bond rule - it's boring.

There are some spectacular stunts, some beautiful locales, and a better than average theme by Rita Coolidge, but it's just not good enough. Roger Moore is showing his years, his toupee, and his disdain for the role. Maud Adams doesn't have the charisma her character demands in all of her scenes. And Moore in the clown suit and the gorilla suit... is just shameful and embarrassing. I think I'll skip this one if it comes on again, a disappointment.

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