007 December – The Living Daylights (1987) – The Sporadic Chronicles of A Beginner Blogger

007-December Blogathon

For today’s next review of The Living Daylights, here is Zoe from The Sporadic Chronicles of A Beginner Blogger to give us her thoughts on it.

Thanks Zoe!


the living daylights poster

SYNOPSIS: After Bond helps Russian officer Georgi Koskov make a daring defection to the West, the intelligence community is shocked when Koskov is abducted from his remote hiding place. Bond leaps into action, following a trail that leads to the gorgeous Kara, who plays Bond as easily as she plays her Stradivari cello. As they unravel a complex weapons scheme with global implications, they are forced into hair-raising chases, a riveting jailbreak and an epic battle in the Afghanistan desert with tanks, airplanes and a legion of freedom fighters on horseback. – via IMDB

“Smiert Spionum? Was a Beria operation, in Stalin’s time. It was deactivated twenty years ago.”
– Leonid Pushkin

Well, it is no secret that I am a fan of this movie. The Living Daylights touts an awesome Bond – Timothy Dalton, definitely my most favoured Bond after Daniel Craig. The movie starts with a bang, exactly what you want in a Bond film. Action, action, action. This was no exception, and it queues up for what is to come.

the living daylights opening

The pacing is alright in this one, definitely in the sense that it does not lag as badly as some Bond films suffer from (and I can be objective saying that – I am a fan, but they aren’t all perfect films). Timothy Dalton gets to race around in an absolutely stunning 1977 Aston Martin V8 Vantage, and don some killer suits and just be badass. He suits the role of Bond down to a tee, and is also a grittier Bond, something I really like. Good looking, intelligent and a little rough around the edges? Total winner for me – a far more realistic Bond.

the living daylights explosion

Anyway, The Living Daylights is certainly a thrill ride, fun and enjoyable and well put together. There was some humour laced throughout the film, but I appreciated how subtle it was, ensuring that this was not drowning in cheese and being totally ridiculous, something the Moore Bond films certainly suffered from. This was a return to form, and one that I appreciated. We were back to espionage and a more realistic setting, unlike the crazy moon colonies we had been subjected to before it. Back was the Cold War antics and all. Naturally, Bond is still the suave agent in all of this, with some cool stunts, but I liked that he was not inundated by silly gadgets all the time. This was a bit more serious than the last few outings. Much preferred, for me.

timothy dalton the living daylights tux

We returned to relatable villains: KGB, generals, arms dealers, etc. I even liked the touch with the Mujahideen joining in. Maryam d’Abo played Kara pretty well. While not the most beautiful Bond girl, and sometimes a little needy, she certainly holds her own much better than most do, and I liked that. I thought the romance between them was slightly rushed and not fleshed out too well, but overall I liked Bond and Kara together. I enjoyed seeing John Rhys-Davies back in action. The cast did pretty well with what they had to work with, and the plot for The Living Daylights wasn’t weak, and had some more meat to it, though it is still not the greatest Bond plot of all time. The villains (Koskov, Necros and Whitaker) were certainly better, though they didn’t seem overly important and weren’t featured a great deal as seriously dangerous people.

the living daylights bond and puskin

I honestly wish Dalton had more Bond films; he was certainly thrilling to watch. He ticked all the Bond boxes for me, and then only got two films. Very disappointing, but I am glad he got some roles to work with at the very least. Anyway, as you can tell, I enjoyed this movie quite a bit and would readily recommend it to anyone that enjoys Bond, but isn’t too big on the cheesiness that some of them delved into. Stellar Bond, solid plot, a romance and not simple womanising, The Living Daylights is totally worth the watch.

6 thoughts on “007 December – The Living Daylights (1987) – The Sporadic Chronicles of A Beginner Blogger

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