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Overall Rating
3.36

Awesome: 13.64%
Worth A Look34.09%
Average: 31.82%
Pretty Bad: 15.91%
Total Crap: 4.55%

1 review, 38 user ratings


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Diamonds are Forever
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by MP Bartley

"The One where Sean came back (for the first time)"
2 stars

So after the risk of making a Bond film without Sean Connery hadn't been the massive success they'd all wanted (On Her Majesty's Secret Service), Eon got cold feet and managed to entice Sean Connery back for one more outing. They really shouldn't have bothered however as Sean Connery's performance sums up what is one of the worst Bond films - drab and lifeless.

So after pursuing Blofeld (Charles Grey) to avenge the murder of his wife Tracey and seemingly bumping him off in the pre-credits sequence (with cabaret-style theme song if that's your thing), Bond is assigned to follow the trail of some diamond smugglers. Taking him from Amsterdam to Vegas, Bond soon discovers that Blofeld is alive and well and using the diamonds to construct a laser satellite.

If you ask anyone to name random great bits from the entire Bond series, the chances are that you'll be waiting a while before you get to anything from 'Diamonds Are Forever'. Simply put it's one of the most generic and uninspired entrys in the Bond series. It could be any other action film from the 70's with any other character.

Gone is the glitz and the style of the previous films, to be replaced by muddy cinematography and tired action sequences. The fact that the action revolves around the less-than-glamorous Amsterdam and Vegas says it all; Bond is a stylish and charming character totally out of place in the tacky and plastic environment of Vegas casinos. It's simply beneath the character to go to such a sleazy joint. And as for the white tuxedo he wears...yuk. James, what were you thinking?

It's a shame that Guy Hamilton who gave 'Goldfinger' such snap, style and pzazz, returned here and utterly failed to give 'Diamonds Are Forever' any of the same qualities. The film looks ugly and moves joylessly from exposition to new setting, from new setting to fresh exposition and so on and so on. There's no vigour in his direction and the obligatory car chases are mechanical and free from tension. He uses a moon buggy at one point to attempt to give it an outlandish vibe, but that doesn't help the feeling that we've all seen this before and even Hamilton is bored of it.

The cast reflect this. Norman Burton is the worst Felix Leiter ever, Jill St. John is an utterly anonymous Bond girl and while Charles Grey has an icy camp as Blofeld he has none of the brutality of Telly Savalas or the maleovelence of Donald Pleasance. Blofeld should be Bond's mortal enemy, but comes across as a cheap, generic villain. It says something when the film can't even be bothered to finish him off properly.

Even Connery seems bored and going through the motions. It was a mistake to bring him back, as he's getting flabby around the edges and his hair dye is quite apparent. Were his eyebrows really that thick? Was he really that tanned? The definitive Bond he may have been, but this is his worst performance in the role.

It's not totally helpless however. There's a brutal punch-up in a lift which has an edge to it, and there's some great bitching between Bond and M (the untouchable Bernard Lee) at the beginning, although fans of Q or Miss Moneypenny will be disappointed by their brief screentime here. The undoubted highlight of 'Diamonds Are Forever' however are the homosexual assassins Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd ( Bruce Glover and Putter Smith). Gleefully vicious in their jobs, they steal the film and are some of the best henchmen the series has ever seen. If only the rest of the film had lived up to their impact and energy.

Frankly, Bond has had many better days than this and Connery has had many better days. Undoubtedly the worst of Connery's films, it's possibly the worst Bond ever. Bereft of ideas, intelligence and enthusiasm it's no great surprise that it was all change again for the next film.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=1219&reviewer=293
originally posted: 07/09/04 00:51:01
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User Comments

10/25/12 Ed Totleben Jr Some good gadgets in this one! 4 stars
5/23/12 keith miron Bond in Vegas, ok action 3 stars
1/26/09 PAUL SHORTT THE WORST OF THE CONNERY BOND FILMS 1 stars
12/13/08 Ravenwest Worst of all, Connery seems bored with his role and delivers a performance that is competen 3 stars
10/30/08 Mark gibson It's corny but fun, and of its time. But theres enough great scenes in it and great dialogu 4 stars
1/28/08 JV35 Fun, but average 3 stars
7/21/07 Sugarfoot The weakest of Connery Bonds but it still kicks ass. Cause it's Conney. 4 stars
4/13/07 David Pollastrini All the women in this film are hot! 3 stars
3/09/07 David Pollastrini liked the theme song 3 stars
11/25/06 JM Synth Lots of fun, which is what you want from a Bond, really 4 stars
9/24/06 ProSneakyD Sean's last film and not a bad one either, but let down by a weak & cheesy script 3 stars
5/21/06 mr.mike great fight scene but otherwise incredibly dopey 3 stars
1/03/06 Yorkee Gay henchmen do not make a movie! 3 stars
1/03/06 Anthony Feor Well at least blofield finally died 4 stars
11/20/05 chris Mr Wint & Mr Kidd are the best bond baddys simply because there gay !! 5 stars
10/26/05 Nick Hard to follow the plot, probably the worst Bond up to this point, still watchable 3 stars
5/26/05 tony Great movie to start bond in the 70's. With thrilling scenes and EVERYTHING!!! 5 stars
4/13/05 Indrid Cold One of those weird 70s Bond movies, but quite entertaining. 4 stars
11/17/04 C Vega Connery's Back.....But Not His Best Bond Movie 4 stars
8/17/04 Herolder Solid Bond movie 4 stars
7/09/04 J Cadiramen I love this. You just can't beat Sean as James... brilliant! 5 stars
4/24/04 J. Pianta bond is bond... not a top but worth watching, it in my bond collection 4 stars
11/29/03 john kind of floats along without thrilling or insulting fans of the series 3 stars
7/06/03 Paul S. Classic moments: Plenty O` Toole, Q winning the fruits, Bambi & Thumper, coffin scene 4 stars
5/16/03 Andrew Carden Overrated Bond Outing Has Connery Overacting In Every Scene. Grand Finale, However. 3 stars
2/28/03 Paul Coleman Creepy homos as villains. Outstanding. Connery is a GOD! 5 stars
1/30/03 Nevz Nicely rounds up the classic episodes 4 stars
10/14/02 Charles Tatum Overly campy, but Jill St. John in a bikini almost redeems it 3 stars
9/17/02 CVJ even though this is not very good Sean Connery still proves to be the best 4 stars
7/21/02 R.W. Welch Not a lot to pan or praise, mildly entertaining stock Bond. 3 stars
1/26/02 murat one of the best if you don't agree you don't know what you expect from a movie 5 stars
1/20/02 David A. I loved Mr. Kidd and Mr. Wint--they should have shot bond while they had the chance! 5 stars
4/08/00 Gremlin Damn! Charles Gray lives again, him and those 2 fags really annoyed me, cool car chase 4 stars
6/25/99 David Keech Fairly lousy Bond effort, but the car chase sequence is amazing. 3 stars
11/25/98 Mr.Pink One of the worst Bond-movies 1 stars
11/23/98 little jerry Quirky Bond film & therefore one of the best. 4 stars
10/25/98 Patrick888 Sean's last EON film. Not up to his 60's best, but still a blast.! 4 stars
10/25/98 zeki crappy and overall cheesy 2 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  17-Dec-1971 (PG)
  DVD: 07-Nov-2006

UK
  30-Dec-1971 (PG)

Australia
  17-Dec-1971 (M)




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