Diamonds Are Forever
A sparkle in the eye for James ...
Diamonds Are Forever(1971)
Distributed by MGM/UA Home Video
After Lazenby's exit, Connery was lured back for $1 million ( £ 400,000 ) fee which he donated to the Scottish Education Trust. Alas this time fours year on since You Only Live Twice (YOLT) we get a Connery slightly heavier in build with signs of grey hair and less care in the character.
The opening scenes has Bond looking for revenge for the death of his wife, we get a guy crashing through a Japanese wall screen ( probably left over from YOLT ), at another place a Cairo man says "Hit Me !" and so on until Connery walks down the beach steps to tell a girl, who he goes on to almost strangle, "My name's Bond ..." in a such a rush that he must have a taxi waiting outside. He wants Blofeld who he traces to his plastic surgery clinic / hideout. Instead of playing it straight, the apparent death of his arch-enemy is played for laughs.
A pale looking M, suffering liver problems, sends 007 to Amsterdam after being told by Sir Donald Munger ( played by Laurence tv's The Persuaders Naismith ) about large quantities of disappearing diamonds from South Africa. During the telling of the tale we are introduced to the gay couple of hoods, a 'perfumed' Mr. Wint and a 'balding' Mr. Kidd who are closing down the smuggling operation.
Under an assumed name Bond meets up with Tiffany Case ( played by American actress Jill St John ) who goes through more hair and costume changes in 5 minutes than any other Bond girl. Her figure is 'ample' but not over appealing as a lead Bond girl and acts the whinging 'dumb broad' to the very end. After a lift fight scene Bond switches wallets, she exclaims "You just killed James Bond !" - how does she know our hero ? She is later described when wearing her bikini "such nice cheeks too, if only they were brains".When it is revealed Blofeld is alive & well after his surgical op, enter Charles YOLT's Henderson Gray as the 3rd actor to play the villain in grey suit with white cat and rather drag disguise when he escapes a Las Vegas hotel. Alas he does not have the menace of his predecessors. There is no mention of his organisation SPECTRE, so has he gone freelance ?
While in Vegas, we have the Moon Buggy chase ( spot the wheel falling off ) which leads to the car chase which includes a car park demolition and another blooper when Tiffany's red Mustang changes sides squeezing through a small alleyway.
Included with the regulars ( Moneypenny's only seen at Dover Hovercraft Port while Q gets to try his gizmos in Vegas ) are Norman tv's Wonder Woman Burton as another Felix Leiter and Gerry Anderson tv regulars Ed UFO Bishop and Shane Thunderbirds Rimmer follow up their YOLT's appearances with small parts as technicians at Willard Whyte's space lab. Watch out for the hood who instructs his guys to chuck Plenty O'Toole out of the hotel window - "I didn't know there was a pool there". He is played by Marc Lawrence who turns up in the opening scenes of The Man With The Golden Gun as another gangster.
With a drawn out gun blazing finale on an oil rig ( substitute for OHMSS 's Piz Gloria ) and 007 dealing with our gay hoods aboard a liner, Bond/ fans will relish Connery's return but I wish Roger Moore could have started a picture earlier despite preferring Sean in the role.
In 2006 MGM Home Entertainment released the James Bond Ultimate Edition 2-Disc DVD set of each of the 20 movies. The format remains the same with disc one having the digitally restored movie and disc two with the extras - Declassified: MI6 Vault, 007 Mission Control, Mission Dossier, Ministry of Propaganda & Image Database. Each menu has a Bond lookalike silhouette, shooting girls, casino chips & cards and gun barrels incorporating photos & music from the movie.
Regular features tucked away in 007 Mission Control with movie snips include the opening titles minus the covering text and another section called Exotic Locations narrated by Maud Octopussy Adams about the filming locations & their history. Also comes with an eight page booklet with info & photos.
For this disc movie audio commentary comes from director Guy Hamilton & cast quotes. Due to the time of the movie there were not that many original documentaries about so we get two short ones, a BBC interview with Connery and another about the lift fight. Further documentaries include: the usual making of the movie narrated by Patrick AVTAK Macnee and another about the life of Bond Producer Cubby Broccoli. Also some deleted scenes including Sammy Davis Jr's Vegas appearance. So another must for Bond fans !