Bond, James Bond. It seems we just can’t get enough of the suave spy known to his handlers as 007. Everyone has their own favorite Bond and their own favorite Bond movie – here then is our list of our 7 Best 007 flicks.
1. GOLDFINGER (1964, Connery)
Most 007 aficionados consider Goldfinger the best Bond ever, and there’s a reason–it really is the best. Bond is sent to battle Auric Goldfinger, an evil millionaire bent on blowing up the U.S. gold reserves at Fort Knox to increase the value of his own gold supply. The third Bond flick is exceptional at everything we’ve come to expect from the franchise: the best Bond–Connery at his finest, the best bad guy henchman–Oddjob with his killer hat, the best victim–a suffocated Shirley Eaton covered from head to toe in gold paint, the best Bond car–a souped up Aston Martin DB5, and the best Bond babe name–Pussy Galore.
2. FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE (1963, Connery)
The second Bond film introduces worldwide criminal organization SPECTRE and the first Q-produced gadget (a gas-spewing briefcase). Bond is assigned to escort a beautiful Russian defector with a top secret decoding device, but the mission turns out to be a trap set by SPECTRE. Filled with suspense and fast-paced action, especially a helluva fight aboard the Orient Express between Bond and assassin Robert Shaw. Best of all is the too cool villainess Rosa Klebb with her poison-spiked shoe.
3. THE SPY WHO LOVED ME (1977, Moore)
It took Roger Moore three chances at Bond before he finally got it right. In this mission, Bond teams up with voluptuous Russian agent Triple X (Barbara Bach) to stop a villain bent on controlling the world from an undersea fortress. This one’s thoroughly enjoyable from the amazing pre-credits ski chase to the introduction of Jaws, a steel-toothed giant who resurfaces in 1979s Star Wars-inspired Moonraker.
4. FOR YOUR EYES ONLY (1981, Moore)
A terrific Cold War story that has Bond racing against the Russians to retrieve a top secret missile targeting unit which sank in a British submarine. Moore gives one of his best performances, and there’s some of the best stunts in the Bond series including an amazing scene in which Bond and babe are dragged from a ski boat over a coral reef.
5. THUNDERBALL (1965, Connery)
A great adventure story featuring some oft-repeated Bond perils: an evil villain threatening the world with stolen nuclear warheads, a shark-infested swimming pool, and beautifully choreographed underwater battles against scubamen. Bond even seduces the bad guy’s girl, another quintessential Bond moment. The film was remade in 1983 as Never Say Never Again produced outside the usual Bond producing circle (for legal reasons way too complicated to get into here) with an aging Connery returning to the 007 role after a 12-year absence.
6. YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE (1967, Connery)
Bond’s first encounter with SPECTRE mastermind Ernst Stavro Blofeld, a recurring character exceptionally established here by Donald Pleasence. When SPECTRE steals Russian and American space capsules in an attempt to launch WWIII, 007 fakes his own death and travels to Japan to stop Blofeld. There’s some impressive special effects including a mid-air battle between four helicopters and the mother of all Bond gadgets–a secret fortress hidden in a fake volcano.
7. GOLDENEYE (1995, Brosnan)
Pierce Brosnan revives the 007 franchise, six years since Timothy Dalton bored fans to tears. Bond battles a rogue double-0 agent raiding weapons stockpiles in the former Soviet Union and planning to utilize the Goldeneye military satellite to destroy civilization. Disregarding the dreary theme song by Tina Turner, it has all the elements that once made Bond great: an amazing (not to mention gravity-defying) jump off a cliff behind a plummeting airplane, a sexy yet menacing villainess appropriately named Xenia Onnatopp who crushes victims with her thighs, and a very cool secret base beneath a phony lake. But this is a Bond for the nineties: M is a woman, Ms. Moneypenny is a bit of a feminist, and Bond has an emotional connection to the mission (he was personally betrayed by 006).