Dr. No

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So, at this writing I have been missing somewhat the perennial brothers October film festival brother 5 started – “Halloween Horror Nights” and felt like I needed another focus for my film choices. I remember as a kid, Bruce W talking about doing a James Bond marathon and with the new Spectre film hitting theaters I thought I would give the Bond franchise a go. So, I’m going to try and watch 1st to last the Bond films and let you know what I think.

First, an order of business. I know the Bond character is a misogynist. There, I’ve acknowledged it and unless there is something particularly cringe worthy (I’m thinking about you Octopussy) I’m not going to dwell much on the franchises obvious sins in that regard.

So how was Dr. No? A pretty good start actually. Connery finds his footing pretty quickly as 007. This film plays out in its first half like a competent who dunnit and actually works best when Bond is piecing together the clues about a missing British agent and his secretary. By today’s action standards, this could seem like a slow crawl, but I liked the deliberate pacing. The obligatory car chase seems a little tame and Bonds hand to hand combat would never fly today. The new digital transfer in HD is crisp and beautiful. The end of the film is more of a chore, requiring more patience from the modern viewer to forgive some cheesy gadgetry and sets as well a what seem like simple, almost childlike stuntwork. I liked the opulent dining rooms and bedroom sets in Dr. No’s stronghold though – super 60’s groovy.

This film by the way has the iconic scene of Ursula Andress exiting the ocean in a bikini with a knife strapped to her hip. That scene does deserves its place in history.

Overall, I enjoyed the experience and look forward to more Bond excitement in the coming days. Up next: From Russia with Love.

Lets give this one a B.