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It brought what was the start of many good Bond movies starring Roger Moore. For the first time, a rock group performed the theme song in a bond movie, and it worked out perfectly. Roger Moore fit perfectly into the role of 007 and made people forget, at least in my mind, about Sean Connery. Despite the absence of Q, Live And Let Die showed good chemistry between Bond, M, and Moneypenny. I think that Roger Moore has the funniest relationship with Miss Moneypenny compared to the rest of the Bonds. Many one liners in this movie made Moore the comedian Bond, and the boat chase in Louisiana certified him as the master of boat chases. Lets not forget about the scene with the plane or the scene on the crocodile farm! The movie had probably the most non-traditional villains to be in a Bond movie: black, New York drug dealers. But, they were some of the best enemies Bond ever tangoed with. Kananga was cool, until he “exploded” and Tee-Hee had to be one of the most intimidating villains Bond ever fought. This movie is a classic 007 flick.
Three Bonds stand out. And this is one of them – the other two are Licence to Kill and Die another Day. For the record I do not have a problem with the Connery Bonds! Given their age they are generally consistant in their quality. However this Bond has something about it. In one corner, you have James Bond, old Etonian, suave, fan of high culture etc etc(Moore empasised these traits). In the other corner? Well…This has to be the only Bond film I’ve ever seen in which the bad guys seem to have absolutely nothing in common with Bond. You’ve got the world’s best known suave spy up against bad guys who’ve come out of another type of film entirely. And despite this film being nearly 30 years old, this unusual combo definately works still. Just WHY did Moore have to follow this up with Golden Gun???
The producers of the Bond series went out on a limb here in aiming Bond’s mission to the rough neighborhoods of Harlem, NY. Looking like a sore thumb in the city, Bond comes across some of the scariest characters of the series. Kananga is a very intimidating villain, with no fear of Bond whatsoever. His henchman with the claw gives a great rebuttal when Bond says his name in that signature way he does. Midway through his introduction, Bond is interrupted with the quote “Name’s is for tombstones baby!”
Drugs are seen in this movie, one of the first times it pops up in the series, in a clever way. Kananga has his drug empire grow without interference from the authorities or locals by having a voodoo cover-up to scare people away from his crops. An ingenious plot maker, and a successful one for this movie.