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Friday, September 2, 2011

Dr. No


A classic. Though certain aspects are unavoidably dated, the first-ever James Bond film holds up very well over 50 years later. Dr. No boasts the cinematic debuts of Bond, M, Moneypenny, Felix Leiter, the Walther PPK, Quarrel, the first mention of SPECTRE, and the indispensible 007 theme.  Dr. No is refreshingly gadget free and straightforward as an investigative adventure, staying very true to the Ian Fleming novel. The secret island 5 star resort, amenities, and nuclear laboratory of Dr. No is the forebearer of every outlandish supervillain and headquarters to follow. Sean Connery's James Bond would never be as young, fit, or dashing as he is here. This early Bond is not yet as unflappably invincible as he would later become.  Here, Bond admits to being frightened after being captured by Dr. No (unthinkable today) and Connery's Bond would never again be as dirty, bruised, bloody, and beaten as he is the last act as he fights to foil Dr. No. The Bond Girls were gorgeous even then; the immortal Ursula Andress as Honey Rider was a golden goddess and set the highest standard for all the women to come in Bond's life.