James Bond is sent to investigate a KGB policy to kill all enemy spies and uncovers an arms deal that potentially has major global ramifications.James Bond is sent to investigate a KGB policy to kill all enemy spies and uncovers an arms deal that potentially has major global ramifications.James Bond is sent to investigate a KGB policy to kill all enemy spies and uncovers an arms deal that potentially has major global ramifications.
The action scenes in "The Living Daylights" are all great. I can't think of one which I disliked, and the special effects might be the in the series up to this point. The plot here is actually intriguing, and neither too convoluted or too thin, and keeps you interested from start to finish. The screenplay is terrific, the best in a Bond film since "On Her Majesty's Secret Service". Maryam d'Abo makes for a wonderful Bond girl in Kara Milovy, one of the smartest and most likable of all of Bond's 'love' interests. I really like Caroline Bliss' Moneypenny as well. How fresh and exciting this is when compared to the previous entry.
I'm honestly hard pressed to find any serious flaws with "The Living Daylights". Some have said that it takes itself too seriously, but I never felt that it did. Sure, it was much more straight-faced than most Bond films, but a film is only taking itself too seriously when it becomes thoroughly ridiculous while maintaining a 'serious' superficial look. I never thought that "The Living Daylights" did this. It, and the follow-up Dalton film "License to Kill" were both relative financial disappointments, mostly because audiences didn't care for Dalton's hard-edged Bond or the fact that the film had actual characters other than Bond, actual real-world stakes, and no silly villains. Then again, "The Living Daylights" did extremely well in comparison to most films that year, and it earned much more than "A View to a Kill" did, so perhaps it is only the lesser "Licence to Kill" that was a disappointment.
How can you go wrong with a movie this well-shot and well-acted, this well-scripted, and so well-scored by John Barry, which would sadly be his last score for the series? A terrific Bond film with a harder edge than most, and one of the few in the series that remains faithful to the spirit of Fleming's novels. A contender for my favorite Bond film and among my favorite action films overall.
- Mar 23, 2008