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The Spy Who Loved Me | James Bond Film | Hollywood Movie Reviews

Released in 1977 The Spy Who Loved Me is the 10th in the James Bond film series (by EON). Roger Moore carries forward the role of James Bond in this film for the third time after Live and Let Die and The Man with the Golden Gun.

Movie :
The Spy Who Loved Me
Producer : Albert R. Broccoli
Director :
Lewis Gilbert
Screenplay : ,
Based On : The Spy Who Loved Me by
Music By : Marvin Hamlisch
Studio : Eon Productions
Distributed by : United Artists
Cinematography : Claude Renoir
Editors : John Glen
Released On :
Starring : Roger Moore (James Bond), Barbara Bach (Anya Amasova/Agent Triple X), Curd Jürgens “Curt” (Karl Stromberg), Richard Kiel (Jaws), Caroline Munro (Naomi), Walter Gotell (General Gogol), Bernard Lee (M), Desmond Llewelyn (Q), Lois Maxwell (Miss Moneypenny), Geoffrey Keen (Fredrick Gray), Milton Reid (Sandor), Robert Brown (Admiral Hargreaves), George Baker (Captain Benson), Edward de Souza (Sheikh Hosein), Shane Rimmer, and others…

The movie have almost nothing to do with the original book The Spy Who Loved Me (Published: 16 April 1962)! The reason is, initially author Ian Fleming sold the rights to use the story title only and not the content for the film! So the screenplay is written by Christopher Wood.

The movie has a lot of underwater stuff. Most of that is filmed really well. Considering the technology available those days, we can say it is simply superb. In fact the movie starts with almost back-to-back sinking of two submarines which hold ballistic missiles. One belongs to Russia and the other to Briton! They both believe that the other has attacked their submarine, got it sunk and captured missile from the same! But is it correct?!

Some scenes in the movie are really breathtaking. For example in very initial segment when James Bond is ski-chased by Soviet counterparts; we see him jumping from the height to very deep. He was armed with a parachute which he open in the midway to fall and saves himself. This initial segment of his jump, shoot from Ariel-view is really nice. It makes you to believe it as a real dangerous stunt. In the same chase the reverse-skiing and jumping in the same situation looks very thrilling on the screen.

The title fades into the main movie effectively, the jumping girl moves outside the screen downward in the main movie scene.

The movie also features intelligent yet megalomaniac named Karl Stromberg. He have plans to develop a new civilization underwater, with perfect sets of people and gadgets. He is indeed a genius person who have his own wrong plans. There was a very advanced Submarine tracking system is developed by his scientists. And it is to be sold in Egypt at, in one of the movie character’s words Astronomical price! Naturally, Bond is given the responsibility to get it by his government. Soviet government assign the same responsibility to Major Anya Amasova, a KGB agent.

So now two agents from competitor countries are looking to get the same thing! What happens that point forward is the rest of the story.

Other underwater set was of a chamber with Sharks. The owner has a lift like tunnel in his dining hall. He send people to that and opens the button to let the person fall in the chamber of death (we can say that right?). He can view the scenario of victim eaten by Sharks from his dining table, and enjoy it! The setup is capable to make you scared of the stuff. We can say that the action-co-ordinators and set directors deserves no lesser credit then the director and scriptwriter; for their splendid work. Ditto, we can say for the cinematography of the film, which makes it a nice visual experience for the viewers. For Atlantis, the hideout of Stromberg, we can say – technically genius stuff.

In to talk about acting we must say Roger Moore is more convincing in this movie then its predecessors. He is able to show the authority of James Bond in his body language, postures, gestures and dialogs more convincingly. Barbara performed below the level in several scenes. For example see her walking in the uniform first time when she is coming to meet her General. Her palm of the right hand is straight in the way she made it ready to salute. The actors playing Q, M and Soviet General plays their part with remarkable ease. It is said that the stronger the villain is, the hero will be proven even stronger. The actor playing the main antagonist is really convincing in his act. It adds to the positive attribute of the movie. The actor playing the gigantic assassin, have the body and the height, and with the teeth of steels, he look terrifying. Though in terms of acting and body language, he is not that good.

On one hand some fights and chases are fantastic, some are unconvincing. For example in Egypt Bond was tried to shot by an assassin with bold head. The fight after that is quite unconvincing. You can clearly see the actors are faking their attempts to hit the opponent! The chase through pyramids is effective and light green lighting there adds positively to the scene.

In terms of gadget the highlight of this movie is the car which can be converted into submarine and can be driven on the road and underwater both. The gadget is well thought.

In quick summary we can say, the movie has more ups then downs and it is a good cinematic experience for sure. For action-thriller lovers it is not to miss movie; and for the James Bond film, it is a delight to watch.

Interesting Facts:

  • The assistant director for the Italian locations, Victor Tourjansky, had a cameo as a man drinking his wine as Bond’s Lotus emerges from the beach. As an in-joke, he then return in similar appearances in another two Bond films shot in Italy, Moonraker and For Your Eyes Only.
  • This film was novelized by Christopher Wood! Published in 1977 the book was named as James Bond, The Spy Who Loved Me. It was the first time any James Bond movie was made into a novel.
  • The name of the hybrid vehicle which can be used as a car and submarine, shown in the movie is The Lotus Esprit. In 2013 EON Musk has purchased this vehicle with heavy price from an auction in order to do research and experiments on making such a vehicle for the real market!

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