This is a Bond movie I have never seen in it’s entirety. Oh, I’ve seen lots of bits here and there, but I had never had the chance to sit down and watch it straight through from the start.
The problem in doing a franchise like Bond is that the producers, writers, and directors have to keep topping themselves. Each film needs to be bigger and with higher stakes than the last or you risk having you audience go ho-hum over what was supposed to be thrilling experience.
Of course the problem with getting bigger and bigger in your stunts, action, and your dangers is that you run the terrible risk of sailing right over the top and landing in farce-land. (A fine place to be if you intend to go, but a lousy accidental destination.)
As you can likely tell from the picture i selected to illustrate my post, I think You Only Live Twice splashed-down in farce-land with a side trip to Mockalvania.
Having decided that stealing Vulcan bombers seemed a mite too pedestrian SPECTER in You Only Live Twice has upgraded to stealing American and Soviet spacecraft while they are in orbit. SPECTER is doing this as a for-profit mission on behalf of the Chinese government that hopes to come out ahead after the US and the USSR have gone to full scale war. (Amazingly, SPECTER is able to pull off this job for a piddling 100 million dollars. Clearly we should have hired them to get us to the moon.)
Bond is sent to Japan where the British government suspects the missiles are being launched from and stumbles into the heart of things nearly right away, He is of course aided by a bevy of japanese beauties, many of whom end up dead, and in the film’s most ridiculous premise, is disguised to pass a native Japanese man himself.Yup, that would fool me for sure, and I’ll have a side of AIG stocks while you;re at it and I’ll let Bernie Madoff (there’s a giveaway name for a conman.) take care of those investments.
Naturally Bond finds all the right clues, get to the nerve center of the villain’s operation and after enduring a pathetic taunt plays his matching card and blows up SPECTERs budget base on the way out.
If you feel the need to skip a Sean Connery James Bond, this is certainly in the short list.