Sunday, November 29, 2009

Domino

R2 Spain










The (mostly) true story of a Hollywood princess turned bounty hunter is told in this witty action-drama from director Tony Scott. Domino Harvey (Keira Knightley) was the daughter of famed actor Laurence Harvey (played by Jesse Pate) who passed on when Domino was only eight years old. Domino's mother, former fashion model Paulene Stone (played by Jacqueline Bisset and renamed (%Sophie Wynn) in the film), strove to give her daughter a comfortable life, but Domino was naturally rebellious, and after a contentious stint in boarding school, a brief career as a runway model, and a fling with the fashion business, Domino was looking for something more exciting. She found it when he met Ed Mosbey (Mickey Rourke), an ex-con who had gone on to a successful career as a "bail recovery agent" -- in short, a bounty hunter. Ed also taught others how to join his profession, and Domino took his course and joined his team, along with Choco (Edgar Ramirez), a headstrong bail agent who took an immediate fancy to Domino. Domino, Ed, and Choco became a successful team -- successful enough that television producer Mark Heiss (Christopher Walken) asked them to become the subject of a television reality series. However, it was after the cameras were turned on Domino that her life got truly crazy. Bail bondsman Claremont Williams III (Delroy Lindo) had hired Domino and her friends for a risky case, and soon Domino, Ed, and Choco were chasing missing men and money while landing in hot water with both the FBI and the Mafia. Domino was loosely based on Domino Harvey's real life story; sadly her personal life was as reckless as her career, and Domino died as a result of drug abuse on June 27, 2005, after this film was completed. The film also features Lucy Liu, Mena Suvari, Macy Gray, and Dabney Coleman.


007 The World Is Not Enough

R2 Portugal





James Bond, the world's greatest secret agent, is sent once more into the breach in the name of Queen, Country, and a dry martini. In the 19th Bond adventure, 007 (Pierce Brosnan) must resolve a potentially deadly power struggle between two unstable nations, with control of the world's oil supply as the ultimate prize. Bond is assigned as bodyguard to Elektra King (Sophie Marceau), the daughter of a petroleum magnate who was brutally murdered, and is trying to foil the fiendish plot of Renard (Robert Carlyle), a villain who was shot in the head with an unusual result: he cannot feel physical pain, an apparent failing that proves to be a considerable asset. Denise Richards appears as Dr. Christmas Jones, an expert on nuclear weapons, alongside Desmond Llewelyn as Q, Judi Dench as M, Samantha Bond as Miss Moneypenny, and John Cleese as R. Alternative rock band Garbage performs the theme song.



007 Tomorrow Never Dies

R2 Portugal





Roger Spottiswoode (Air America) directed this film, the 18th chapter in the 35-year-old James Bond series (excluding Casino Royale and Never Say Never Again). James Bond (Pierce Brosnan) learns billionaire media mogul Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce) is manipulating world events via an exclusive flow of information through his satellite system reaching all corners of the planet. With a stealth battleship sinking a British naval vessel, Carver sees that the Chinese are blamed. Crashing Carver's party in Hamburg, Bond meets "journalist" Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh), later revealed as a Chinese agent. In a brief tryst, Bond renews his past relationship with Carver's wife Paris (Teri Hatcher). Carver dispatches Stamper (Gotz Otto) and other goons to cancel Bond, who eludes attackers with some of his new gadgets. In Southeast Asia, after Bond and Wai Lin scuba dive into the sunken British ship, they are captured by Stamper, handcuffed, and taken to Saigon where they make a motorcycle escape. To thwart Carver's plans for WWIII, the two agents head for Carver's stealth ship where a cruise missile is aimed at Beijing. Principal photography began April 1, 1997 in the new Eon Productions studio facility at Frogmore, northwest of London, and on the 007 stage at Pinewood Studios. Locations included the UK, Hamburg, Southeast Asia, Mexico, and off the Florida coast. The trademark Bond pre-title sequence was filmed in the French Pyrenees snowfields, centered around one of the few high-altitude operational airfields in Europe.



007 Goldeneye

R2 Portugal
















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Saturday, November 28, 2009

007 Licence to Kill

R2 Portugal





Timothy Dalton is better in Licence to Kill than in his first James Bond endeavor (The Living Daylights), but he still seems uncomfortable on the right side of the law. This time around, Bond is working on his own rather than on behalf of the British Secret Service. His American friend Felix Leiter (David Hedison), an agent of the Drug Enforcement Administration, has been seriously injured by drug dealer Robert Davi, and 007 is out for blood. There is precious little time for the usual Bondian quippery and directorial campiness, resulting in a marked increase in bloodletting (including the "implosion" of secondary villain Anthony Zerbe). A climactic highway chase involving an oil tanker and a helicopter is stretched slightly beyond its value, but is still one of the best action setpieces in any Bond film. Licence to Kill was a refreshingly serious change of pace for the series, albeit one that tended to lessen Bond's box-office value.




007 The Living Daylights

R2 Portugal





The Living Daylights represents the first appearance by Timothy Dalton as "Bond...James Bond." Based very, very loosely on an obscure Ian Fleming short story, the film finds Bond assigned to aid in the defection of KGB agent Jeroen Krabbe. 007 must prevent an unknown sniper from killing Krabbe before he can reach the West. The mysterious assailant turns out to be the luscious Maryam d'Abo, who like practically everyone in the film except Bond is Not All That She Seems. The plot wends its way through a scheme to trade several million dollars' worth of diamonds for weapons, which will be shipped off to mercenaries worldwide. The climax takes place high above the clouds in a cargo plane loaded with opium. Dalton would play Bond one more time in License to Kill (1989) before handing the franchise over to Pierce Brosnan.


007 Diamonds Are Forever

R2 Portugal





After George Lazenby portrayed James Bond in On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Sean Connery returned to the tux, gimmicks, and catchphrases of Secret Agent 007 in his penultimate Bond outing, Diamonds Are Forever. Fragments of Ian Fleming's original 1954 novel remain, including the characters of the alluring Tiffany Case (Jill St. John) and fey hitmen Wint (Bruce Glover) and Mr. Kidd (Putter Smith). The remainder of Richard Maibaum and Tom Mankiewicz's script diverges dramatically from the novel, involving Bond in a scheme by the insidious Ernst Blofeld (Charles Gray) to force the world powers to disarm so that he can take over the globe. Folksinger Jimmy Dean shows up briefly as a Howard Hughes-like reclusive billionaire, while Lana Wood (Natalie's sister) participates in one of the film's edgiest cliffhangers. Agreeing to make Diamonds Are Forever only because of the money offered him, Sean Connery parted company with the role for 12 years after this film; he returned to the role once more in 1983, for Irvin Kershner's underrated Thunderball remake Never Say Never Again.


007 On Her Majesty's Secret Service

R2 Portugal


It wasn't as well received at the box office as the pictures that preceded it or followed it, but Peter Hunt's On Her Majesty's Secret Service was the finest of the James Bond movies and also arguably the last truly great movie in the series. James Bond, portrayed here by George Lazenby (in his only performance in the role) has spent nearly two years trying to track down Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Telly Savalas), the head of SPECTRE. He has been taken off the case by his chief (Bernard Lee), an action the pushes him to the point of considering resigning from Her Majesty's Secret Service, just as he opens a possible new avenue of attack on his quarry. Whilst in the field, Bond has chanced to cross paths with the Contessa Teresa Di Vicenzo (Diana Rigg), a beautiful but desperately unhappy woman, whom he rescues from one apparent suicide attempt and an embarrassing moment at a casino gaming table -- the Contessa, who prefers to be called Tracy ("Teresa was a saint"), is the daughter of Marc Ange Draco (Gabriele Ferzetti), an industrial and construction magnate and also a crime boss, who is impressed with Bond personally as well as professionally, and would like to see him marry his daughter. Bond is, at first, unwilling to involve himself with a woman -- any woman -- on that level, but Draco's underworld contacts give Bond a vital clue to Blofeld's whereabouts that get him back on the case and hot on the man's trail. Journeying incognito to Blofeld's mountaintop retreat in the Swiss Alps, Bond finds the criminal mastermind posing as a would-be nobleman and also as a philanthropist, running a clinic devoted to the treatment and eradication of allergies. It's all a front for a surprisingly sinister (and scientifically valid) plot for international blackmail that would make any previous Bond villain quake in fear. And in the process of staying alive long enough to have a chance of stopping Blofeld, Bond discovers the Tracy is truly like no woman he's ever known before -- one special enough that he finds himself willing to give up his life as a free-living, free-loving bachelor.



007 You Only Live Twice

R2 Portugal





James Bond heads East to save the world (and to learn how to serve saki properly) in this action-packed espionage adventure. When an American spacecraft disappears during a mission, it's widely believed to have been intercepted by the Soviet Union, and after a Russian space capsule similarly goes missing, most consider it to be an act of American retaliation. Soon the two nations are at the brink of war, but British intelligence discovers that some sort of UFO has crashed into the Sea of Japan. Agent 007, James Bond (Sean Connery) is sent in to investigate. After staging his own death to avoid being followed, Bond, disguised as a Japanese civilian, teams up with agent Tiger Tanaka (Tetsuro Tamba) and his beautiful associate Aki (Akiko Wakabayashi). With their help, Bond learns that both the American and Russian space missions were actually scuttled by supercriminal Ernst Blofeld (Donald Pleasance) in yet another bid by his evil empire SPECTRE to take over the world. As he battles the bad guys, Bond finds time to romance both Kissy Suziki (Mie Hama) and Helga Brandt (Karin Dor). You Only Live Twice was one of Sean Connery's last outings as James Bond. The next Bond film, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, would star George Lazenby as 007, and while Connery would return for Diamonds Are Forever, in 1973, Roger Moore took over the role. (Connery would play Bond one last time, in 1983's Never Say Never Again, which was produced outside the official series.)

007 Thunderball

R2 Portugal


Thunderball finds James Bond matching wits with the sinister espionage organization S.P.E.C.T.R.E, (which stands for Special Executive for Counterintelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion). This time, S.P.E.C.T.R.E. hijacks a NATO nuclear bomber, hiding the bombs under the ocean depths and threatening to detonate the weapons unless a ransom of 100,000,000 pounds is paid. The mastermind behind this scheme is international business executive Emilio Largo (Adolfo Celi), who maintains a pool full of sharks for the purpose of eliminating enemies and those henchmen who fail to come up to standard. Dispatched to the Bahamas, lucky Mr. Bond enjoys the attentions of three nubile ladies: Largo's mistress Domino Derval (Claudine Auger), British spy Paula Caplan (Martine Beswick, previously seen as a gypsy girl in the 1962 Bond epic From Russia With Love) and enemy agent Fiona Volpe (Luciana Paluzzi).


007 Goldfinger

R2 Portugal



With Goldfinger, the James Bond series took a turn away from relatively straightforward spy thrillers and toward campy gadgetry, extravagant sets, and kitschy jokes. Bond (Sean Connery) has to prevent a notorious gold smuggler, appropriately named Goldfinger (Gert Fröbe), from robbing Fort Knox. Goldfinger is surrounded by evil henchmen such as the sexy female pilot Pussy Galore (Honor Blackman) and Oddjob (Harold Sakata), who kills with his steel-rimmed bowler hats. In order to stop Goldfinger, Bond has to survive several perilous situations, including a huge, deadly laser. Goldfinger is one of the most popular films in the James Bond series, and it set the tone not only for the rest of the series but also for most of the action/adventure films of the late '60s and early '70s.

Friday, November 27, 2009

007 From Russia With Love

R2 Portugal




From Russia With Love, the second in the series of James Bond films, is the film that solidifies all the Bond film elements into a formula -- the action sequences are intensified and lend greater tension to the proceedings; John Barry's inimitable score makes its first appearance; Q is seen for the first time; and Sean Connery as Bond has nailed down his role as 007 -- accentuating Bond's stylishness and sophistication, while toning down his cold-bloodedness. In From Russia With Love, the bad guys don't want to take over the world. They want something more mundane -- a Russian decoding device. Assigned to the mission of stealing the decoding device are No. 3, former KGB agent Rosa Klebb (Lotte Lenya), and No. 5, Kronsteen (Vladek Sheybal), an expert chess player who has plotted every move of the mission. Kronsteen's plan requires using Bond's weakness for women as an element in acquiring the decoding device. Once Bond obtains the decoding device from Russian cipher clerk Tatiana Romanova (Daniela Bianchi), SPECTRE muscleman Red Grant (Robert Shaw) is to forcibly take it from Bond and kill him. But Bond suspects a trap. Being Bond, however, he can't resist the lure of a beautiful woman. So, flaunting danger, Bond travels to Istanbul to meet Tatiana. The centerpiece of this 007 feature is the thrilling fight to the death between Bond and enemy agent Red Grant aboard the Orient Express.


007 Dr.No

R2 Portugal





Terence Young directed this first of a long line of screen adventures with Ian Fleming's unflappable British Secret Service Agent 007 in a fast-paced, tongue-in-cheek style that set the tone for the rest of the popular series. Sean Connery sets the standard by which all future takers must measure themselves as the insouciant and devil-may-care James Bond. The story concerns Bond being sent to Jamaica to investigate the murders of a British agent and his secretary. During his investigation, he comes into contact with the evil and unscrupulous Chinese scientist Dr. No (Joseph Wiseman) who, living on an island called Crab Key, is hard at work in a nuclear laboratory. Dr. No's scheme is to divert rockets being fired from Cape Canaveral off their charted course and to blackmail the United States to get their rocket launches restored to normal. Helping Bond is Ursula Andress (mostly undressed in a bikini throughout most of the film), as well as bad gals like Zena Marshall, who almost leads Bond to his death in her bedroom, and Eunice Gayson, a Bond pickup in a London gambling house who proves herself a greater adversary than even James Bond can handle.


007 For Your Eyes Only

R2 Portugal

For Your Eyes Only eschews the gimmickry and campiness of earlier James Bond films, concentrating instead on telling the story and maintaining suspense. Roger Moore is back as Secret Agent 007, this time on the trail of Soviet spies while he romances the beautiful Melina, played by Carole Bouquet. Richard Maibaum's screenplay has very little to do with the collection of short stories that made up Ian Fleming's For Your Eyes Only, save for the plotline involving Melina's seeking vengeance for the death of her father. The direction is by John Glen, who'd previously done second unit work on other Bond films.




007 The Spy Who Loved Me

R2 Portugal




Though not Ian Fleming's most famous James Bond novel, 1962's The Spy Who Loved Me was distinguished by the unique device of telling the story from the heroine's point of view; in fact, Bond doesn't make an appearance until the book is two-thirds over. This would hardly work in the film world's Bond franchise, so the original austere plotline of the novel was eschewed altogether in favor of a labyrinthine story involving outer-space extortion. The leading lady, a "hard-luck kid" in the original, is now sexy Russian secret agent Barbara Bach, who joins forces with Bond (Roger Moore, making his third appearance as 007) to foil yet another megalomaniac villain (Curt Jurgens), who plans to threaten New York City with nuclear weaponry. Beyond the eye-popping opening ski-jump sequence, the film's best scenes involve seven-foot-two Richard Kiel as steel-toothed henchman Jaws. Fifteen scriptwriters worked on The Spy Who Loved Me; only two were credited, including Bond-film veteran Richard Maibaum.



007 A View to a Kill

R2 Portugal




Secret Agent 007 must stop a megalomaniacal technology mogul from destroying Silicon Valley in this unexceptional entry in the James Bond series. Computer baron Max Zorin (Christopher Walken) is planning to trigger a major California earthquake in order to wipe out his competitors. Bond is assigned to stop him, but first he must do battle with Zorin's statuesque partner in crime, May Day (Grace Jones). The expected high-wire confrontations ensue, as Bond battles the villains at international landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and takes the occasional break to romance an attractive geologist. Unfortunately, nothing fresh is brought to the familiar formula, and even the well-staged action sequences prove less than exciting. Indeed, this otherwise by-the-numbers production is most notable for the fact that it marked the final appearance of Roger Moore as the dashing Bond.


007 Octopussy

R2 Portugal


This (13th) time around, "007" receives the usual call to come and visit "Mother" when another agent drops off a fake Faberge jeweled egg at the British embassy in East Berlin and is later killed at a traveling circus. Suspicions mount when the assistant manager of the circus Kamal (Louis Jourdan), outbids Bond for the real Faberge piece at Sotheby's. Bond follows Kamal to India where the superspy thwarts many an ingenious attack and encounters the antiheroine of the title (Maud Adams), an international smuggler who runs the circus as a cover for her illegal operations. It does not take long to figure out that Orlov (Steven Berkoff), a decidedly rank Russian general is planning to raise enough money with the fake Faberges to detonate a nuclear bomb in Europe and then defeat NATO forces once and for all in conventional warfare.



007 Moonraker

R2 Portugal



In this adaptation of Ian Fleming's 1955 novel, James Bond (Roger Moore) must thwart Sir Hugo Drax (Michel Lonsdale), who plans to wipe out all of humankind and replace it with a super race that he has cultivated in a massive space station. The girl in the case is American secret agent Holly Goodhead, intelligently played by Lois Chiles. "Jaws," the steel-mouthed henchman played by Richard Kiel in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), makes a return appearance in Moonraker, turning good guy (complete with a girlfriend of his own) in the process. Bernard Lee makes his last appearance as "M" in this most costly of James Bond's 1970s escapades.



007 The Man With the Golden Gun

R2 Portugal



The Man With the Golden Gun, Roger Moore's second outing as James Bond (Live and Let Die was the first), whisks our hero off to Hong Kong, Macau, Thailand, and then the South China Sea in search of a solar energy weapon. His opponent is Scaramanga (Christopher Lee), who rules the roost on a well-fortified island. Scaramanga's aide-de-camp is Nick Nack, played by future Fantasy Island co-star Herve Villechaize. Britt Ekland plays the bikinied Mary Goodnight, whose clumsy efforts to help Bond thwart Scaramanga are almost as destructive as the elusive solar device. The Man With the Golden Gun was adapted by Richard Maibaum and Tom Mankiewicz from Ian Fleming's last James Bond novel, which had to be published posthumously in "rough draft" form.



007 Live and Let Die

R2 Portugal





Roger Moore makes his first appearance as "Bond...James Bond" in 1973's Live and Let Die. Bond is dispatched to the States to stem the activities of Mr. Big (Yaphet Kotto), who plans to take over the Western Hemisphere by converting everyone into heroin addicts. The woman in the case is Solitaire (Jane Seymour in her movie debut), an enigmatic interpreter of tarot cards. The obligatory destructive-chase sequence occurs at the film's midpoint, with Bond being chased in a motorboat by Mr. Big's henchmen, slashing his way through the marshlands and smashing up a wedding party. Clifton James makes the first of several Bond appearances as redneck sheriff Pepper, while Geoffrey Holder is an enthusiastic secondary villain. The title song, written by Paul McCartney and Linda McCartney, provides the frosting on this 007 confection.




Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Assignment

R2 Portugal



In this drama, a naval officer named Annibal Ramirez (Aidan Quinn) is vacationing in Israel when he's arrested and questioned by Israeli agents, led by Amos (Ben Kingsley). Unknown to Annibal, he bears a striking resemblance to Carlos Sanchez (also played by Aidan Quinn), a famous and feared international terrorist wanted in several nations. Jack Shaw (Donald Sutherland) is a CIA operative who witnessed one of Sanchez's most brutal attacks in the 1970s and is obsessed with bringing him to justice. Shaw persuades Ramirez to join his team and to pose as Sanchez, convincing the nations who work with him that he's an unreliable traitor. While this would give Ramirez a chance to serve his country, it would also take him away from his wife Maura (Claudia Ferri) and his children, not to mention putting his life in grave danger. Carlos Sanchez was the name of an infamous terrorist (also known as "The Jackal") who was active in the 1970s and 1980s; while the "Carlos Sanchez" character is based on his fearsome exploits, the rest of the story is fiction.