Bond Girl: Re-Watching and Re-Evaluating Live and Let Die | The Mary Sue
James Bond isn't the ideal male fantasy -- he's a creepy psychopath who . At the end of For Your Eyes Only, Bond stops Melina Havelock from that it depicted a real relationship between Bond and his doomed love interest, Vesper Lynd. In the first Roger Moore Bond movie, Live And Let Die, Bond. After all, this is a James Bond film, and style is one thing that they have in spades. One of the most obvious issues that Live And Let Die has is that it falls into that who meets an unfortunate end – kind of exist to get in Bond's way. the way that the film treats Solitaire's powers in relation to her virginity. After Skyfall, expectations were high for James Bond's 24th outing and It was no great surprise that Scott's character ended up being a bad guy but the connection to Spectre and Blofeld was thinly Let us know in the comments below. . Whatever about his private life the guy gives that franchise his all.
Check out previous entries here. Content warnings for racism, stereotypes, brief mention of a rape threat. The film, eighth in the franchise and the third to be directed by Guy Hamilton, is a glossy, gritty work that looks amazing but has some serious issues.
Objectively, if I look at it from a sort of outsider POV, this movie is stylistically interesting.
After all, this is a James Bond film, and style is one thing that they have in spades. Blaxploitation films were never really my thing.
Spectre: the villains, the women, the ending – discuss the film (with spoilers!)
Despite the fact that they were technically supposed to be made for black audiences, they tended to focus on stereotypes about Blackness and black people.
To this day, they feel like movies made based on what film studios thought black audiences would like or what they were like, rather than true looks at the lives of black people. Live And Let Die takes the typical Blaxploitation themes and tropes and applies them rather ham-fistedly, I think to the James Bond franchise.
At first, I was excited about how many Black people were in the film in the same way I was while watching You Only Live Twice and seeing Japanese people actually playing Japanese characters ; but as the film went on, I realized that I was mainly getting images of stereotypes. Set in Harlem, New Orleans, and a fictional Caribbean country, the movie has a large amount of characters from the African diaspora. Unfortunately, most of those characters are working to oppose Bond. Offhand, of the characters of color that have speaking roles in the film, only two are definite good guys.
James Bond forced himself on this woman. You know what the great thing about Jason Bourne and Ethan Hunt is? They don't rape people. That's right, it took the producers of the Bond films over 40 years to figure out that having Bond actually care about a woman instead of treating her like a wadded-up piece of Kleenex was much more rewarding for audiences. Eon Productions "You're the one with whom me and my crabs want to spend the rest of our lives.
In the original book, we get a window into Bond's inner monologue, in which he describes sex with Vesper as having the "sweet tang of rape. He goes on to say that he "wanted to see tears and desire in her remote blue eyes and to take the ropes of her black hair in his hands and bend her long body back under his.
If they made an Inside Out-like movie about Bond, his mindscape would look like a Hieronymus Bosch painting drenched in alcohol. One is a stripper who entertains in a club in Harlem. She dances to voodoo drumming. She is described by Bond as having a face like a pug dogwhich he specifically refers to as a "chienne" face - that is, the face of a bitch. As in, literally he's comparing her to a female dog.
Not "bitch" like "unpleasant female. She's at the end ordered to strip completely naked but at that moment the lights go out, Bond gets kidnapped and that's all we get about her. The only other black woman in the book is on a date with her boyfriend at a bar. Bond is spying on them - not because they are of any importance but because he feels like "he's in enemy territory" in this "Negro world" and he wants to get a better idea of The conversation between the man and his date is rife with I don't know what it's called Ah was fixin' to treat yuh tonight The boyfriend immediately becomes jealous, accuses her of getting ringside seats because she's sleeping with the owner, and threatens to beat her if he ever catches her cheating.
He also, in the course of the conversation, uses "big words" to try to impress her, but Bond is sniggering to himself because the words aren't real. Blacks are uneducated and it's funny when they try to use "big words" like whites do.
Excuse me while I vomit in the corner. Rather than listening to this conversation of a jealous black man threatening to beat his woman for cheating on him and coming to the conclusion that black people are "different," Bond immediately identifies with the man and says, Seems they're blacks interested in much the same things as everyone else - sex, having fun, and keeping up with the Joneses. Thank God they're not genteel about it.
Yes, I should have known that this chilling conversation would create a feeling of empathy with Bond - after all, both he - a white man - and the black man at the table agree that women are property and should know their place.
This "black man as a superstitious, uneducated idiot" trope is prevalent throughout the book. The only black men who DON'T fit into this category are: Big escapes this category because he is half French.
Live and Let Die (James Bond, #2) by Ian Fleming
He speaks "like a white man," very eloquently and without slang. Bond admires his "brilliant brain" a lot and marvels that there is a black "master criminal" in existence. But even though Big is well-spoken, obviously educated, half-white, and dresses in a suit - he's still a voodoo practitioner, keeps "horrifying" voodoo paraphernalia in his office, and controls the other, "poor, ignorant, superstitious, innocent" black men with threats of mystical, voodoo punishment.
Many are convinced his a "zombie in control of himself Quarrel, on the other hand, is James Bond's friend. Quarrel calls Bond "Cap'n" which is described as "the highest title he knew" since he's from "the most famous race of seamen in the world" Caymen Islanders.
Bond, in turn, just calls Quarrel by his name. When Bond is injured - which is often in this book, Quarrel tends to his wounds in what seems to me a very servile way. Then he puts her, naked, into his bed.
Then, he "allows" Quarrel to strip him, bathe him and tend to his much more serious wounds before driving him to a hospital. The love interest in this novel is white, blue-eyed, black-haired Solitaire: She is from Haiti. It's strongly implied that she comes from a powerful slave-owning family in Haiti who fell on hard times. At times, it seems she's psychic: When Bond asks her about her "powers," she claims she just reads people well.