The movie poster says “Far Up, Far out, Far More, James Bond 007 is back”.
On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
|Producers||:||Harry Saltzman, Albert R. Broccoli|
Peter R. Hunt
|Screenplay||:||Richard Maibaum, Simon Raven, Peter R. Hunt|
|Based On||:||On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming|
|Starring||:||George Lazenby (James Bond), Diana Rigg (Countess Tracy di Vicenzo), Telly Savalas (Ernst Stavro Blofeld aka Comte Balthazar de Bleuchamp), Gabriele Ferzetti (Marc-Ange Draco), Ilse Steppat (Irma Bunt), Bernard Lee (M), Lois Maxwell (Miss Moneypenny), George Baker (Sir Hilary Bray), Yuri Borienko (Grunther), Bernard Horsfall (Shaun Campbell), Desmond Llewelyn (Q), Virginia North (Olympe), Ingrit Black (German girl), Mona Chong (Chinese girl), Julie Ege (Helen, a Scandinavian girl), Jenny Hanley (Irish girl), Anouska Hempel (Australian girl), Sylvana Henriques (Jamaican girl), Joanna Lumley (English girl), Helena Ronee (Israeli girl), Catherina von Schell (Nancy, a Hungarian girl), Angela Scoular (Ruby Bartlett, an English girl), Dani Sheridan (American girl), Zara (Indian girl), and others…|
Sixth in the James Bond film series (by Eon) this is the first one where Sean Connery is not playing the protagonist. After he decided to retire from James Bond films, a new actor named George Lazenby was chosen to play the role. However he decided to not to play James Bond again (However he was offered a 7 films contract, but convinced in other way by his agent)! Also the news came to limelight that he was not treated well on the sets. He even appeared in the promotions with beard look (a completely non-Bond look), to show his disappointment with the team.
It is also worth to note that, Peter R. Hunt, the director of this film have directed only one James Bond film (though he was involved in different – behind the camera – roles in some of the other James Bond films).
This film is also known for its being near to the book on which it is based (then the other movies).
During the audition when showing aggression, George punched a professional wrestler accidentally. It worked however in his favor though, as producers impressed with his way to show aggression.
Let us take a look at the story of the film.
Bond was going somewhere when he was overtaken by a girl. She later attempts a suicide and Bond saves her from drowning, resulting him be in fight with some local goons who he overpowers. The girl though ran away.
During the title sequence we see a lot of characters from the previous James Bond films, this is the attempt of the creators to let the people link this film with the other Bond films, as the actor playing the protagonist is changed. We also hear a dialogue before the title sequence just started, saying something like, This never happened to the other fellow; attempting the same. As actually it is the first time that anyone else than the Sean Connery was playing the role, and producers were worries about the change. So they attempt almost everything they can, so the viewer can link it with other James Bond films. The viewers however hadn’t complained.
Bond again meets the girl and got to know that she is Contessa Teresa “Tracy” di Vicenzo. She invite him to meet her at her room later in the night. However when Bond visited the room, he was attacked! And Bond found Tracy in his room! However she denied knowing the man who attacked Bond in her room (where she called Bond to meet her). The attacker was alive and was overhearing the conversation between Bond and Tracy.
Next morning, Bond found Tracy already checkout out! And he was kidnapped while leaving the hotel.
The kidnappers took him to Marc-Ange Draco, the head of the European crime syndicate Unione Corse. It revealed by Draco that Tracy is his daughter. His wife died earlier and hence mother-less Tracy became out-of-control. The troubled past of Tracy is the cause of her problems and as a father he was worrying for his daughter. Draco requested Bond to marry her! As he thinks that she needs a man who can love her enough and control her so she can love him back. He offered Bond a personal dowry of 1 million pounds for doing so! Bond refused the proposal. However Bond was very much interested in knowing the whereabouts of Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the head of SPECTRE. Bond agree that if Draco find and reveal the information, he continue romancing Tracy!
Bond returns to his London office and meets his boss – M. He have had a little argument with M as Bond’s license to kill is found useless by him, as Bond was unable to trace Blofeld. Bond decide to resign and got her resignation letter prepared by Moneypenny. (We later got to know that instead of resignation letter she wrote a leave application letter for Bond, without let him know the same). His application was accepted to his surprise! Then later he realize it and was thankful to Moneypenny for her wit. This shows the human side of the Bond – that in anger he took the decision to leave her majesty’s secret service but he never wanted to do so. We, often do such things. A nice scene in the movie of course.
Bond then lands to Draco’s birthday party at Portugal. Draco here officially introduces Bond and Tracy to each other. Tracy show the least interest in Bond though and informed her father that she know him. The Bull-fighting scene is filmed good. Tracy doubts his papa’s intentions and asks him to reveal the information he needed to supply Bond and forces him to do so. The information was – there is a possible connection between Swiss lawyer Gumbold and Blofeld.
Now what will happen? Is there really a connection between them both? What Tracy will do now? Will Bond be able to get her fall in his love? Was he simply doing his duty or later falls in love with Tracy in real? What is Blofeld up to and why it is dangerous for the world? Would he recognize Bond when they both meet? All these questions are answered while watching the film.
George played his part honestly and he looks convincing as the protagonist. The girl playing Tracy is good looking. Overall all the cast member performs pretty well. The snowy locations and stunts there are the heart of the film and they are filmed pretty well. We see there is a lot of money spent for the same. The locations are pretty good. The background music is compatible.
Overall it is a nice Bond movie to watch.