Other: Related 007 Books (2)

11) LICENCE TO THRILL: A Cultural History of the James Bond Films - by James Chapman

Published by: I.B. Tauris ( 1999 )

The author, an Open University Lecturer in Film & TV, takes a serious look at the history of the Bond films in popular culture. With an Introduction titled Taking James Bond Seriously followed by chapters grouping the films e.g. Chapter 3 Bondmania: Thunderball, Casino Royale, You Only Live Twice, On Her Majesty's Secret Service. He compares the Fleming's books to the later films and uses their dialogue when necessary and relates to historical events.

The 325 page publication is a useful media studies resource as it rekindled my memories of evening studies with numbered notes throughout the narrative. It's a shame the notes aren't placed at the end of each chapter rather than the end of the book. Also included is a full filmography ( up to TND ) and bibliography ( detail listing of books, unpublished scripts, newspapers etc. ) and 40 b&w movie photos.

Explaining the success of the series, the author suggests in his postscript ...

"... it is the combination of all these elements - the production values, the visual spectacle, the pattern of repetition and variation, the Britishness and the internationalism - which accounts for the distinctive style of the Bond films."

This well researched book will interest all true Bond fans even if you're not doing film studies.


12) The Essential Bond - by Lee Pfeiffer & Dave Worrall

Published by: Boxtree ( 1998 )

The 'authorized guide to the World of 007' covers all the Bond movies* plus a brief look at the literary 007, while other chapters are devoted to The James Bond Family, spin-off movies, other James Bonds and the 007 Phenomenon - looking at the fans who follow this legendary spy. With a foreword by Bond producer Michael G Wilson, the next pages are devoted to Remembering Cubby [ Broccoli ]. Then each chapter opens with short credit list/ release dates, within are subsections: The Assignment, 007's Women, 007's Villains, 007's Allies, Vehicles, Gadgets & Weapons, Marketing & Merchandising and finally The Box Office. Small black info boxes are added with each movie titled Top Secret Cast & Crew Dossiers and Around The World With 007 - revealing the movie's filming locations. Each author brings his in-depth knowledge to the subject matter and the 204 page publication includes some different & not seen before photos from the EON's photo library especially the final page b&w photo of Saltzman, Fleming & Broccoli titled Their world was not enough... It's a must read for Bond fans.

*This print of the book covers up to TND, the updated version with different cover includes TWINE.

TEB - front
TEB - rear

13) Kiss Kiss Bang Bang ! - The Unofficial James Bond Film Companion - by Alan Barnes & Marcus Hearn

Published by: BT Batsford Ltd ( 1997 )

This updated version covers the movies from Dr No to TND and includes Casino Royale & NSNA. With a Prologue titled Everything or nothing, they explain the Bond history and how as fans they "brought the dream". The 206 page book [ £15.99 ] contains plenty of 007 information along with many b&w photos ( most taken at Eon's press gatherings to promote the films ). So if you're looking for the usual movie photos, this book isn't for you - perhaps this explains the 'unofficial' tag on the cover.

Apart from the movie title, each chapter is given a subtitle e.g. Dr No - An Elizabethan gangster & Goldfinger - A kind of joke Superman , usually taken from mentioned press reviews. Each movie is looked at in sectioned paragraphs i.e. history, relationship to Fleming's books, ommitted scenes. box-office, reviews etc. As explained in their Introduction, every chapter ends with the movie categorised:

  • File
  • Teaser
  • Titles
  • Bonkers plot
  • Locations
  • Gadgets
  • Girls
  • Villains
  • Fights, chases, explosions
  • Dialogue and double entrendres
  • Bond
  • Plus/minus points

Each category is given marks out of 10 and finally awarded an overall percentage ( I noted YOLT came top with 94% and AVTAK bottom with 31% ). There is also an end cast & selected credits listing.

The publication seems rushed for TND's release as the usual category section with marks etc. are missing for the movie. An opening chapter listing and an end index would also have been helpful. Having not seen the updated 2001 TWINE version, I am not sure if any of the latter have now been addressed. Overall a good and informative read - shame about the occasional use of a swear word ( e.g. May Day's AVTAK jump ) in the text - sorry guys adds nothing.

Kiss Bang Bang

14) The Making of Tomorrow Never Dies - by Garth Pearce

Published by: Boxtree ( 1997 )

After his Making of GoldenEye the author returns to follow the troubled making of Brosnan's 2nd outing as superspy 007. Back in 1997 the book was released in full size publication but this smaller version - 8in(20cm) x 6in (15cm) is part of a purchased Collector's Limited Edition Video Box Set* so comes in smaller print and giving this reviewer some evening eye-strain !

The black soft cover has posing Brosnan within gun barrel front photo but has less pages than last time ( 95 compared to 128 ) and after a Preface follows 3 chapters ( Bond 18...and Counting, Creating the Bond Magic & The Final Countdown ) each containing elements about the making of a big budget Bond movie. Background & quotes from all areas: cast, director and production team. Along the way you discover some interesting facts: like out of the original script only 3 pages remained unchanged and there were seventeen versions of 007's BMW 750iL gadget-filled car !

If you think filming is glamorous read some of the smaller parts/extras accounts and discover the hours of waiting & re-filming. The book is a good insight into world of 007 with the expected colour photos from the movie and while filming. The inside opening photo of author chatting to star in Thailand is captioned Pearce and Pierce .... So if you ever come across a rare copy it's worth a purchase despite its age.

* Note. The black Collector's Limited Edition Video Box Set contained a video of TND, 2nd video Highly Classified: The World of 007 hosted by Desmond Q Llewelyn, 3 limited numbered movie storyboards and the book.


15) The Making of GoldenEye - by Garth Pearce

Published by: Boxtree ( 1995 )

Having purchased the movie's all-colour official magazine when released, I couldn't see the point of purchasing this book about The Making of GoldenEye. In London recently I noticed the 'mint-condition' book in a sale reduced from the original £8.99 to £4.99 that's less than some 007 mags - so a bargain buy !

The 128 page softback book splits into 11 chapters starting with James Bond: Present and Correct and ending with The Masterminds about the director, editor etc. The author covers similar ground to the magazine but with some different location & studio photos, mainly b&w with most of the colour photos taken from the movie.

The biggest chapter is devoted to Pierce Brosnan's Bond Diary with the writer's observations about production and the Irish star adding his quotes along the way. It opens with Pierce taking his agent's call "at exactly 12.35pm on 1st June 1994" telling him that he got the part. Another chapter called And ... Action has the script from four scenes in Brosnan's first outing including his dressing-down by the new M. Like the magazine, the final page is the movie's credit listing but unlike the mag's full listing here is just a waste with a spaced-out summary of some cast & production names.

Slightly disappointing for a Making Of .. book but despite its age it still proves an interesting, light read worth adding to your Bond library.

T M of GEye

16) The Official James Bond Movie Book - by Sally Hibbin

Published by: Hamlyn ( 1989 )

When working in London I used to spend some lunch-times looking around the discount book shops hoping to pick up a bargain. This book resembles one of those speciality annuals brought out at Xmas but with glossy cover with Bond actors ( which is the same as hard cover if lost - most are plain ) I got this bargain for half price ( original price £9.95 ).

The title's new has been added for cover/updating purposes, the book opens with a foreword by Bond Producer Albert R. Broccoli as it marks the 25th anniversary of the Eon series. It has an opening background chapter about THE BOND MOVIE PHENOMENON including a double page of the 4 Bond actors with portrait photos/details.

Each movie section follows the same format with left page gun barrel and inserted movie photo. The right page movie chapter opens with an overview and any going ons between movies, then over the following pages broken down into ...

  • The Assignment
  • Equipment used
  • Enemy Personnel
  • The Bond Girl
  • The Victim
  • The Background Story

The movie chapter ends with a bottom page Dossier with brief cast/production names/date/timing. The 160 page book has "over 200 colour and black and white photographs" taken from Eon's library. After 140 pages of movie reviews, there is a full CAST LISTS section with repeated photos followed by the last page's handy Index. It is an easy read with a few bloopers: for OHMSS Lazenby didn't drive "along in his Aston Martin DB5" - it was the DBS version and the photo caption writer gets it wrong with LTK's Dario ( played by Benicio del Toro ) who becomes Dano ( never heard Sanchez say: "Book 'im Dano !" ). Despite its age and covering now only DN to LTK, never has a book still been used so much for reference purposes. It's a shame that it was never updated again instead of Cork's later hefty over-sized book. When published I am sure that it was purchased by all true 007 fans.

TOJB - front
TOJB - front

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