Thursday, October 04, 2012

James Bond Marathon: Bond Girls are Forever

Directed by John Watkin, Bond Girls are Forever is a TV documentary about the evolution of the Bond Girls in the James Bond film series. Hosted by its co-author Maryam D’Abo who played Kara Miloy in The Living Daylights, the documentary showcases how the Bond girl was created and how it would evolve throughout the series as it features interviews with many of the women who played these roles. The result is a fascinating TV documentary about the world of the Bond Girls.

To celebrate the franchise’s 40th anniversary as well as the release of its 20th film Die Another Day, Maryam D’Abo travels all over the world to interview several of the women who had played Bond Girls. Throughout the course of the film, many would reveal not just the joy of playing a Bond Girl but also reveal that not everything is great. Starting with Ursula Andress as Honey Ryder and Honor Blackman as Pussy Galore, the two share their ideas about the Bond Girl and how it transformed their careers. Luciana Paluzzi, who played the villainess Fiona Volpe revealed that being in the film caused a backlash in her native Italy where she found herself unemployed in the Italian film production for a while.

As the 60s became the 70s, Jill St. John, Lois Chiles, Maud Adams, and Jane Seymour each express their views about the evolution of the Bond Girls where some like Adams, Chiles, and Seymour express some discontent over the way Bond treats women sometimes though St. John was more kind about how the Bond Girl was treated as she says it’s just part of a fantasy world that was away from reality. D’Abo and Carey Lowell, who participated in the late 80s Timothy Dalton era, each express their fondness over playing the Bond Girls while noting the lack of sexuality in the film. By the time the 90s rolled around, it became clear that Bond Girls had evolved into more empowering women led by Judi Dench as M.

What makes the documentary interesting isn’t about the evolution of the Bond Girl through different decades and different Bonds. It’s about this exclusive club that these women are a part of where they’re recognized all over the world and become part of a phenomenon. While some enjoy it, a few are uneasy about it. Through the editing of Kevin Bourque and Harry Watson and John Watkin’s direction, it explores the different time periods of the Bond Girls. The shortcoming of the documentary are the ones who don’t get interviewed like Barbara Bach, Daniela Bianchi, Carole Bouquet, and several others. Yet, the ones who do participate do provide a lot of insight into the world of the Bond Girls.

Bond Girls are Forever is a wonderful TV documentary that explores the world of the Bond Girls. It’s something that James Bond fans must see just as an accompanying piece to the films. Notably as it gives them a nice view about the evolution of the Bond films and the way women are portrayed throughout its first 40 years. In the end, Bond Girls are Forever is a superb TV documentary from John Watkin.

James Bond Files: The EON Films: Dr. No - From Russia with Love - Goldfinger - Thunderball - You Only Live Twice - On Her Majesty's Secret Service - Diamonds are Forever - Live and Let Die - The Man with the Golden Gun - The Spy Who Loved Me - Moonraker - For Your Eyes Only - Octopussy - A View to a Kill - The Living Daylights - Licence to Kill - GoldenEye - Tomorrow Never Dies - The World is Not Enough - Die Another Day - Casino Royale (2006 film) - Quantum of Solace - Skyfall - SPECTRE - No Time to Die

Non-EON Films: Casino Royale (Climax! TV Episode) - Casino Royale (1967 film) - Never Say Never Again

Bond Documentaries: True Bond - Everything or Nothing: The Untold Story of 007

© thevoid99 2012

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