Countdown to Skyfall: For Your Eyes Only (1981)

Countdown to Skyfall: For Your Eyes Only (1981)

FOR YOUR EYES ONLY (1981)

BOND: Roger Moore

DIRECTOR: John Glen

BOND GIRL(S): Carole Bouquet (Melina Havelock)

COOL GADGETS: Other than the various gadgets quickly shown in Q's lab (the best being an umbrella with spikes coming out as it folds), the 3D identigraph is a hilarious sight to behold.

THEME SONG: "For Your Eyes Only," sung by Sheena Easton.  In a first, Easton's face is shown singing during the opening credits.  The era of music videos is officially ushered in to the Bond series.

IMDB PLOT SUMMARY: Agent 007 is assigned to hunt for a lost British encryption device and prevent it from falling into enemy hands.

ICONIC MOMENTS: The mountain climbing set piece at the end is one of the more intense in any of the Bond movies.

FUN FACTS: Julian Glover (as main baddie Kristatos) was the villain in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.  He was also a candidate to replace Sean Connery as Bond for On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

VERDICT: After going way over the top with Moonraker, the filmmakers went back to basics with For Your Eyes Only.  This is a more serious, action-heavy film than any of the other Roger Moore entries, and for those reasons alone - it's easily the best Bond movie that Moore has done (or will do).  The plot is recycled Bond - definitely shades of From Russia with Love in there, but the pacing is so quick and the action so exciting, I didn't mind.  From the pre-credits sequence, where Blofeld is dispatched once and for all, to impressively choreographed car chases and underwater battles, and on to the thrilling siege of Kristatos' mountaintop fortress, the movie really puts Moore through his paces.  Thankfully, he more than keeps up.  The crossbow-wielding Melina has a bit more substance than other Bond girls before her, and the writers give her a fairly compelling revenge storyline.  By no means a flawless film (the ice skating subplot goes nowhere; the Margaret Thatcher ending falls flat), For Your Eyes Only still brings Bond into the '80s with great energy and style.

GRADE: B+

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