Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Movie #350: Goldfinger

Goldfinger is the third film in the James Bond series, starring Sean Connery, Honor Blackman, Gert Frobe, Harold Sakata, Cec Linder, and Shirley Eaton.

After the unrelated credits sequence, superspy James Bond (Connery) finds himself tasked with spying on Auric Goldfinger (Frobe), who's smuggling gold around. He promptly blows his cover by forcing Goldfinger to stop cheating at cards/banging Goldfinger's girlfriend (Eaton), which results in him being knocked out by Goldfinger's superstrong manservant Oddjob (Sakata) and said girlfriend being murdered by being covered in gold paint.

The rest of the movie reveals Goldfinger's plot (irradiated the gold at Fort Knox so that his gold jumps in value), treats us a bunch of fun action sequences, introduces the least-subtly named Bond girl of all time - Pussy Galore (Blackman), and kills at least one more woman (Tania Mallet, playing Eaton's sister, trying to kill Goldfinger and getting her neck broken by a hat. How sad).

Confession time: I find a lot of the older Bond movies really slow. That's probably a product of the time in which they were made, yes, but while newer ones (by which I mean the Brosnan era; the Craig ones are in a class by themselves and I haven't seen Spectre yet) are arguably much lower in quality, I find them more watchable in a lot of ways. Goldfinger is iconic, sure, but I don't think it's aged as well as some of the (comparatively) more recent ones. But it's been a really long time since I watched Thunderball or any of the Moore movies, so I don't know.

Also, I have a really hard time with just how bad at his job Bond is. Like, he had no reason to get involved with Goldfinger in the beginning of the movie - what, because he's taking some guy to the cleaners at gin? Who gives a fuck? This guy's a spy, he murders people with detached ease, but he's outraged over a rigged card game? Just felt lazy; not sure if the book is any better.

Anyway. Bond films are fun, but I sort of prefer the later ones that veer even further into sci-fi.

My grade: B-
Rewatch value: Medium-low

Next up: Left Behind