Thunderball ★★★½

I forgot how this film broke away from the Bond formula by limiting itself to 2 locations in the main plot (I GUESS 3 if you count the water off the coast of Miami but seriously, it's just an establishing shot of the city and then an underwater fight.) It also broke away from the formula by being too long and having 30 minutes + of boring, hard to follow underwater scenes with no dialogue.

Okay, that's kinda a harsh way to start off a review for a film that I generally enjoyed, but this is a film with some pretty glaring flaws and its hard to just brush over them when the most heavily advertised set pieces of the film are a bit of a let down. I'll give them a pat on the back for trying something new though, and the underwater scenes that aren't just dudes shooting harpoons at each other are nice and work much better.

Outside of that complaint you have a very solid Bond film, even if it fails to reach the heights of Goldfinger or From Russia With Love and, as mentioned before, it feels a bit too long. There is honestly some cool stuff going on. The opening scene, while entirely pointless and only an excuse to shoehorn in a jetpack, is fun and incredibly silly. Even though Goldfinger was a great villain, it's good to be back with the SPECTRE story arc and Largo makes for a pretty good villain while we wait for Blofeld to get his bald butt out of his chair and throw down with Bond.

My one major complaint besides (and possibly more important than) the lackluster water fights and the length... is what the hell happened to the guy who saved Domino? Like, he untied her, she shot Largo with the speargun, Bond says "Who the fuck is this guy?", hand him a floaty, and the 3 jump off the boat... but then Domino and Bond are the only two rescued. Did he drown? Did he get picked up off screen? Did Bond leave him behind because he was killing the vibe between him and Domino and he needed a romantic ending? Is he still floating in the waters off the coast of Florida to this day? I expect an answer in You Only Live Twice otherwise I will be sorely disappointed.

This is a part of the For Queen and Country challenge (, where I rewatch a Bond film a week starting April 1st.
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Alison liked this review