A VIEW TO A KILL

(1985)
With Roger Moore, Christopher Walken, Tanya Roberts, Grace Jones, Patrick MacNee, Robert Brown, Desmond Llewelyn, Lois Maxwell
Directed by John Glen
Reviewed by JL and JB

The lineup of Abba has changed over the years...     Roger Moore, just about ready for the nursing home, says adios to 007 in one of the weakest of all Bond films. It's a shame because there's so much unexplored potential in this one. Christopher Walken and Grace Jones are inspired choices for villains, but they're given little to do except strike poses and spout hackneyed ee-ville dialogue. There are also some decent set-pieces such as a dizzying chase up the Eiffel Tower, a well-staged underground battle, and a climax atop the Golden Gate Bridge that's good for some cheap thrills. But most of the film is a mess, with a first half involving drugged race horses that doesn't seem to have much to do with the main plotline about Walken's attempts to corner the world's microchip market. (Or perhaps my attention was wandering too much to catch the connection.) Tanya Roberts makes for some nice eye candy, but she's among the most annoying of Bond girls, the epitome of the helpless bimbos whose dialogue consists of screaming "James!" every other line. The entire MI6 gang was getting long in the tooth by now and it was past time for a series overhaul, which would come two years later when Timothy Dalton took over the Bond role. 2  - JL


      It's not that Roger Moore was old, but that he was too old to play James Bond. Sean Connery solved that problem in NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN by (a) making a film where Bond is supposed to be older and (b) being Sean Connery. Moore would have made for a fine "M" at this point in the franchise, paving the way for a new Bond, but the powers that be felt they could squeeze one more good Bond film out of him. They were wrong. I have only seen this film once and dread viewing it again so I will charitably match the above rating with my own. After all, almost all James Bond films have at least two stars worth of fun action sequences, whatever else their flaws may be. 2 - JB

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