Batesville Herald Tribune, Batesville, Indiana

Community News Network

November 16, 2012

From Connery to Craig, 007 style mirrored the times

The 007 movie franchise has turned 50 with the release of "Skyfall," one of the best in the series that's already breaking box-office records overseas.

The previous 22 Bond films have grossed around $5 billion, a sum even Ernst Stavro Blofeld wouldn't dismiss.

Daniel Craig, in his third outing, is as craggy as ever but he's also more three-dimensional, thanks to a Scottish-orphan backstory and a Freudian flourish involving Judi Dench's matriarchal M.

Sean Connery, for me and just everybody else, remains the best of the babe-magnet Bonds. He had style to burn. The only time Craig dresses up is when he has to infiltrate bad-boy billionaire soirees. (There's a lot of Bourne in this Bond).

Connery liked to swank it up because his James had a snobby sense of entitlement and he knew how good he looked in a tux.

Beginning in 1962 with "Dr. No" followed by "From Russia With Love," "Goldfinger," "You Only Live Twice" and "Thunderball" — before he got a bit long in the tooth — Connery had just the right curdling cruel mix of suavity and menace. Bond, he never let us forget, is licensed to kill.

Connery grew in stature as an actor outside of the series but he was never so brazenly priapic as he is in these films. Who else, grappling with crime-ring queen Pussy Galore in "Goldfinger" could deliver a line like "You're a woman of many parts, Pussy" with a (sort of) straight face?

Still, the series was never dependent on Connery for its success. After Connery and before Craig, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, and Pierce Brosnan all had a go at it. The formula, always loopier than the Ian Fleming novels, has continually adjusted to the zeitgeist.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • sleepchart.jpg America’s sleep-deprived cities

    Americans might run on sleep, but those living in the country's largest cities don't appear to run on much.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Who should pay for your kids ACT?

    Thirteen states paid for 11th-grade students in all public high schools to take the ACT college admission test this year, with several more planning to join them in 2015.

    August 20, 2014

  • Pets.jpg Why do people look like their pets?

    As much as we might quibble over the virtues and vices of Canis domesticus, however, and over whether human nature is any better or worse than dog nature, even dog fanciers don't usually want to look like a dog.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ice bucket challenge trending up

    Internet trends are a dime a dozen these days. Everything from Tebowing to planking to the cinnamon challenge can cause a wave of social media activity that can last for weeks before fizzling out.

    August 19, 2014

  • Africa goes medieval in its fight against Ebola

    As the Ebola epidemic claims new victims at an ever-increasing rate, African governments in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia have instituted a "cordon sanitaire," deploying troops to forcibly isolate the inhabitants in an area containing most of the cases.

    August 18, 2014

  • Democrat? Republican? There's an app for that

    If you're a Republican, you might want to think twice before buying Lipton Iced Tea, and forget about Starbucks coffee. If you're a Democrat, put down that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and throw away the cylinder of Quaker Oats in your pantry.

    August 18, 2014

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

  • Can 6 seconds launch a career? A generation of Vine stars sure hopes so.

    A year ago, Shawn Mendes filmed himself singing a tentative acoustic cover of the Justin Bieber song "As Long as You Love Me" and put the results on Vine. He wasn't expecting much response. "I didn't really want anything to happen; I just kind of wanted to see what people would think," says Mendes, 16. "I posted that first Vine and woke up the next morning with 10,000 followers. That was pretty cool."

    August 14, 2014

  • Freshman.jpg 8 crucial tips for college freshmen

    With school starting back up around the country, no one has a bigger deer-in-the-headlights look than college freshmen.

    August 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • A night in Ferguson

    For the past week in Ferguson, reporters have been using the McDonald's a few blocks from the scene of Michael Brown's shooting as a staging area. Demonstrations have blown up each night nearby.

    August 14, 2014