So Connery is gone, and a new era is upon us. Live And Let Die marks the start of the longest James Bond so far in terms of films made, being the first of a seven that few would describe as wholly magnificent. Yet, as with so many cultural icons, often the first person you see playing a role is the person you form the closest association with. As I’ve said before on this blog, Roger Moore is the Bond I grew up with, the one most often shown on ITV repeats (or indeed, first showings) during my childhood. And this was, at face value, an era of change – familiar trappings such as Q and briefings in M’s office, with Bond tossing onto Moneypenny’s hat stand before tossing off a casual declaration of love were out of the window. For shame.
But there were a number of firsts which helped to make this film stand out in the series, which sadly aren’t repeated enough to qualify as legacies. Sadly, this is the first of only two occasions on which the title track was nominated for an Oscar, and also the first of two times that Bond went hang-gliding. We can only hope that future high quality musicianship and unpowered aviation appear in Bond 23, at which point the legacy value might be reassessed. (Although frankly, I’m a fan of Jack White, but given his effort for Quantum Of Solace we’d have been better giving Jack Black a try, so anything will be an improvement this time around.) Read the rest of this entry »