Live And Let Die
Enter a 'saintly' Bond ...
Live And Let Die(1973)
Distributed by MGM/UA Home Video
Ex- tv Saint & Persuader Roger Moore's debut ( with plenty of gadgets unlike Lazenby's debut ) as British agent James Bond 007 is spared no expense with visits to New York, San Monique ( aka Jamaica again ) and New Orleans to solve more missing agents and an international drug trade. This adventure is influenced by the 'Black' Movies of the time like Shaft with the heavies in the shape of Dr. Kananga/Mr. Big ( played by Yaphet tv's Homicide: Life on the Street Kotto in the dual role ) with an "inflated opinion of himself" and hooky henchman Tee Hee ( actor Julius Harris ).
The stunts which include a drawn out 150 mph boat chase around the Louisana Bayou. The 'cursing' Sheriff J.W. Pepper ( played by Clifton James ) provides the comedy during the action and proves so popular that he returns for the next Bond outing. Also a reminder never to travel on a double decker bus with 007.
Moore is less 'saint-ish' with short hair-cut but still given the usual Bond one-liners ( e.g. "sheer magnetism" & "quite revealing" ). Alas without Q, 007 doesn't "grow up". One of the silliest scenes has 007 in his hotel room playing with his gadgets - the worst and unnecessary one being the hairbrush for tapping out Morse Code ! Good score by George Martin and memorable theme tune by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney.
Watch out for the tv faces of David Voyage To The Bottom of The Sea Hedison as another Felix Leiter ( getting the chance to reprise the role in Dalton's Licence To Kill ) and Jane Dr. Quinn Seymour as the young, beautiful and psychic Solitaire who with her Tarot cards ( with rear red 007 logos ! ) foresees future events - very handy except when Bond tricks her into bed.
An enjoyable first outing for Roger who immediately stamps his style of Bond on the audience.
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.
A regular feature tucked away in 007 Mission Control with movie snips is a 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 short b&w ones with Moore about New Orleans and hang-gliding plus a comedy sketch from 1964 with Roger fooling around as 007. The usual Inside .. doc narrated by Patrick Macnee and another about the concept poster art for the movie narrated by Producer Michael G Wilson.
So another for the Bond archives.