Strangways, Here We Come: My ‘First’ James Bond Experience

Before tonight I am ashamed to say that I had never seen a James Bond film starring anyone other than Daniel Craig. And no matter how great I think Skyfall (2012) is, I wanted to go back and see the man who started it all: Sean Connery. Dr. No (1962) was my first foray into official, old school Bond territory and it did not disappoint in the least. I finally got to see all of those iconic scene that make the series, plus some pretty terrible fight scenes AND some really awkward car chases where no one was actually driving a car. Man, aren’t the 60’s great?

James Bond is a piece of film history and it is easy to see why.  Dr. No is pure fun. It features beautiful people, an exotic location, and a bad guy with a super cool lair featuring an underground fish tank and really big air ducts. It is incredible to watch the first ever Bond film and see how many elements that started way back when have endured to this day. Sure the technology has gotten just a tad bit better and the fight scenes last wayyy longer (like that Casino Royale opening…jeez), but so much remains the same. Dr. No isn’t a perfect film in any regard, but it is an important film and for that I will overlook some of its flaws. Sure the story might lag in some parts and I wasn’t sure what the actual plan was with the whole space shuttle thing, but none of that mattered in the end. It was all about that white bikini, that shaken martini, and that truly iconic theme music. Hearing the music alone is one thing, but seeing that man at the poker table, lighting his cigarette without a care in the world while the music cues up in the background…well that’s a different experience altogether.

Sean Connery IS Bond. Sure, I’ve only seen one other portrayal of the role, but I know enough to know that I really like what he started. He’s the man who helped make film history. Not liking Sean Connery as James Bond would be like not liking William Hartnell
as the First Doctor. There would be nothing if it wasn’t for them paving the way. Connery is classic cool, the kind that is rarely made any more. He knows how to wear a tux, he knows how to drink, and he knows how to get a woman’s attention. He is charismatic, smooth, and elegant. Craig on the otherhand is a Bond for the modern age. He’s a little rougher around the edges. He’s not your typical idea of handsome, but he isn’t bad to look at either. He’s cool and cunning and a bit more aloof. Both men mirror society’s ideal of manliness for the time periods in which the films were made. The stories represent the different time periods as well. 1960’s Bond has to deal with issues of radioactivity (including a pretty funny scene where they shower to remove radiation purly designed just to get the hot cast naked) and US  space missions, while Casino Royale (2006) deals with international terrorism and banking. Times may change, but one thing stays the same, Bond is always the epitome of cool and representative of what a spy film should look and feel like.

I can’t wait to continue my journey and see more Bond films. My goal is to watch them in order to see how the series progresses and changes over the years. With the exception of Bond 24. That film I’ll see the weekend it opens. Especially if Chiwetel Ejiofor is the villain.

Final Words

  • Someone just really wanted their initials to spell SPECTRE. Hmm…reminds me of another similarly named organization
  • If you get the title of this post you should tell me in the comments/via twitter because that probably means we should be best friends

 

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