-Famous Russian General defects!
the old war office building in Whitehall had been used and it would also feature in Dalton's last film, Licence to Kill. Why the Malaysia tourist office was used is unknown. The building seen in the background is the Canada house, which is part of the High Commission of Canada in London. It hosts the consular and cultural sections of the High Commission.
25 Jan 2012
20 Jan 2012
Villefranche-sur-mer, côte d'azur - part 1
In Never say never again Bond follows Largo's yacht to the south of France. After being picked up at the airport in Nice, Nicole (agent 326), takes him and Leiter to a villa with a magnificent view over the Mediterranean. This villa is situated just above the bay in Villefranche-sur-mer, on the French Riviera.
"I found the villa for us, just where you wanted, it's perfect. The Flying saucer has anchored in the bay below..." -Nicole-
During the film Largo's yacht is anchored in the bay in Villefranche and a lot of scenes were filmed in the village. These scenes will be covered later and it includes Domino arriving at the old harbour, the end of the motorbike chase and some of the scenes at Palmyra.
In one of the first scenes in Villefranche, Bond follows domino to "la centre de la Santé" where he later gives her a massage. This scene was filmed at avenue Sadi Carnot in the touristic center of the village, just above the old harbor. You can see the red harbor house in the background. Very close by is Promenade des Marinières. On this street along the quay you can find a great number of restaurants.
Villefranche-sur-mer is a wonderful village and well worth a visit when on the Riviera. Within walking distance from the center of the village is a beach overlooking the bay. The best time for a visit to the Riviera is definitely early summer (May) or late summer (September-October) since there are less tourists and the climate is as good as in the summer. Perhaps even better, since it is slightly cooler you can wear a blazer without sweating.
The exterior of Largo's house Palmyra was filmed at two different castles, one being the famous Citadelle just behind the old port in Villefranche. The interior scenes was filmed at Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild across the bay. Both these locations will be covered later.
The village has also featured in both The Persuaders (The gold Napoleon) with Sir Roger and Tony Curtis, and the action film Ronin with Robert de Niro and Jean Reno.
13 Jan 2012
Lufthansa to L.A.
|Lufthansa Boeing 707|
Bond is arriving at LAX and the famous theme building, the landmark of Los Angeles international airport is visible in the background. The plane featured in the film is a Boeing 707-320 or 420, an airplane that was normally used for long-haul flights at the time.
"-You wanna sit in the front Mr Franks?
-It's a lot smoother ride in the front Mr Franks!
-Yes I believe I'll sit in front..."
Despite the fact that Bond meets with Leiter in the US customs building the Lufthansa Cargo logo is visible on several places both in- and outside when Bond picks up the coffin with the real Peter Franks. Lufthansa does not receive any recognition in the end credits but imdb.com lists Lufthansa as one of the product placements or movie tie-ins for the film, even though I have never seen any commercials or ads connecting Bond with the airline.
Why Lufthansa was Bond's choice of airline is unknown. It would have been more appropriate for Bond to fly with the Dutch airline, KLM, or Pan Am which had already been used two times before. However, apparently neither KLM nor Pan Am flew to Los Angeles from Amsterdam in 1971, but Lufthansa did. That flight originated in Frankfurt and made a stop in Amsterdam before continuing across the pond. It is not possible, even today, to fly with Lufthansa from Amsterdam to L.A. The only non-stop Lufthansa flight from Europe to L.A. departs from Frankfurt.
|A Lufthansa catering truck at Amsterdam (Frankfurt?) airport|
The airline has never been seen or mentioned again in the series.
Nu tar vi helg och firar en avslutad femte termin!
8 Jan 2012
Bangkok car chase
Bond is chasing Scaramanga in a red AMC Hornet, previously stolen from a car show room, with the Louisiana state sheriff J.W. Pepper in the other seat. Scaramanga is driving a golden AMC with agent Mary Goodnight locked in the boot. A few different Bangkok sights can probably be recognized in the film but a lot of things have changed since 1974 so it is hard to find locations still untouched.
"Who are you after this time boy, commis?! Let's go get 'em, I'm with you all the way!"
The democracy monument was commissioned in 1939 to honor the "Siamese Revolution of 1932" which led to the establishment of a constitutional monarchy in the Kingdom of Siam. In June 1939 the name Siam was changed to Thailand. (Bond's only other connection with Siam was that he unintentionally drank Siamese vodka in You only live twice 1967.)
Another monument briefly seen during the car chase is the "Gigant Swing" in front of Wat Suthat temple. The swing can only be recognized by the lowest part and is never seen in its full heigth in the movie. The Wat Suthat temple in the background is more obvious and they probably chose to film the sequence here because it was a distinct Thai location.
The Gigant Swing was originally constructed in 1784 and is a religious structure used in various ceremonies. It was renovated and moved to its current location in 1920 and a major reconstruction took place between 2005 and 2007. I visited both of these locations in 2005 unaware of their significance to the Bond history, something that I discovered years later.
The car chase is one of the least interesting chases in the entire Bond series and is probably remembered only for the finale when Bond jumps with the car over a river and flips it 360 degrees. A stunt that became world famous after the Bond film.
The film itself qualifies in the bottom five list despite Christofer Lee and the fact that there are two Swedish ladies in the lead. The plot is poorly written and Scaramanga is no actual threat to Bond or anyone else. The film has little action and takes almost no advantage of the exotic locations in Hong Kong and Macao. That said, it is one of Sir Roger's better efforts as Bond, before he became to tired of doing his own fight sequences. It is also the film where Bond has the most number of suits in the series.
Ha en fortsatt trevlig söndag!
Ha en fortsatt trevlig söndag!
4 Jan 2012
Circus Circus - Las Vegas
"When was the last time you visited a circus?"
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