The Man With The Golden Gun (1974) – BlogalongaBond #9
Guest reviewed by Scaramanga and Nick Nack.
Nick Nack: Messieurs et mesdames, welcome to Blogalongband.
Scaramanga: Felicitations all.
Nick Nack: So, monsieur, why are we here today?
Scaramanga: Well, my dimunitive friend, we’re here to watch The Man With The Golden Gun, famous for being the film where I – Scaramanga of the superfluous papilla – take out a contract on the life of James Bond.
Nick Nack: Oh, OK… Hang on, wait a minute. You’ve done what, now?
Scaramanga: I’m going to kill 007.
Nick Nack: Why?
Scaramanga: He’s a legend amongst men. A lover, a fighter, a master of the double entrendre. He will be the finest target of my career.
Nick Nack: Monsieur, have you even been watching the Bond films of late? Bond’s a joke these days.
Scaramanga: Of course I’ve been watching. This is the first film in months where the same guy has played him. Trust me, after all the disruption, they’re finally getting back on track.
Nick Nack: You think so, monsieur? Trust me, they’re not. I’ll prove it to you. Send him a customised bullet with his name on.
Nick Nack: I want to show you how inept he is. Send him the bullet, let him know the great Scaramanga is after me. And then see what happens.
Bond is briefed in M’s office, but it turns out he’s already up to speed on Scaramanga.
Scaramanga: Blimey, he knows an awful lot about me.
Nick Nack: Not everything. He forgot to mention that you’re Ian Fleming’s cousin. That’s a pub quiz fail right there.
Scaramanga: Wait a minute, why’s he going to Beirut to find the bullet that killed 002. I’ve just sent him one of my golden bullets. Can’t he just get that analysed?
Nick Nack: Exactly.
A belly dancer’s dressing room. A fight scene breaks out.
Scaramanga: Nick Nack, I don’t remember these men being on my payroll. Who are they?
Nick Nack: Stuntmen.
Scaramanga: Not them. The fellows whose reflection I can see in the mirror.
Nick Nack: That’s the camera crew, monsieur. You see? Standards are slipping.
Bond travels to Hong Kong, where he stands around with a MASSIVE TARGET on his back.
Scaramanga: I’ve got him in my sights. Damn. This is too easy. The film’s only been on for half an hour.
Nick Nack: If I may make a suggestion, the gentleman next to Bond is carrying a top secret Macguffin that will make the audience think you’re working to a fiendish masterplan and not merely spending huge time and resources killing Roger Moore.
Scaramanga: Won’t the producers mind?
Nick Nack: They’re too busy shoehorning the wreck of the Queen Elizabeth into the script.
Bond goes to Bangkok, where he meets Hai Fat and Chew Mee.
Scaramanga: Is it just me, or are the puns getting worse?
Nick Nack: At least they’re not named after a brand of crisps.
Scaramanga: Ooh, look, Bond is pretending to be me. He’s got the third nipple and everything.
Nick Nack: He’s got the third nipple in the wrong place! He’s an amateur!
Bond fights sumo wrestlers.
Scaramanga: Isn’t he in Thailand? Sumo wrestlers are Japanese.
Nick Nack: He won’t notice. Anyway, we can bugger off for a fag break ’cause we’re not on for ages while they rip-off Enter The Dragon with a big karate scene.
Scaramanga: Isn’t he in Thailand? Karate is Chinese.
Nick Nack: He won’t notice.
INTERVAL, during which Christopher Lee and Herve Villechaize have a quiet word with their agents.
Scaramanga: Welcome back to The Man With The Golden Gun.
Nick Nack: To recap. Two girls have helped Bond escape, and a boy has fixed his boat. In order to make 007 look halfway decent as a hero, they’ve parachuted in J.W. Pepper from the last film as Bond’s comedy sidekick.
Scaramanga: You’re being unfair, Nick Nack. Don’t forget From Russia With Love, Goldfinger…
Nick Nack: Those were a decade ago, monsieur!
Scaramanga: But I’ve made a special gun out of a cigarette lighter and a pen. Cost me a fortune.
Nick Nack: eBay it.
Bond has Britt Ekland and Maud Adams in his hotel room.
Scaramanga: Hmm, I recognise the blonde.
Nick Nack: Summerisle, Monsieur.
Scaramanga: And why’s the brunette saying she sent the bullet to Bond? I thought that was us.
Nick Nack: She posted it, but we planted the idea in her mind. Why else you think we spent all the money making a waxwork dummy of 007?
Scaramanga: I thought that was a gift from Madame Tussaud’s.
Nick Nack: That’s not important. What is important is that Bond has locked Britt Ekland in a cupboard. He’s turning down the prospect of a threeway. He’s an idiot!
Bond meets Scaramanga. At a boxing match.
Scaramanga: I thought I specified somewhere grand and exotic for our first meeting.
Nick Nack: All you said was, ‘lots of extras.’ Anyway, stop complaining. At least you could see the fight. All I saw was Roger Moore’s arse.
Scaramanga: I’ll let you off if you can put me in a really good Bond movie car chase.
Nick Nack: I’ll do my best, monsieur, but… oh, we appear to have got away already. Unless Bond’s thinking of driving over that broken bridge.
Scaramanga: Finally, a chance to see 007 do something really amazing…
Cue childish penny-whistle sound effect.
Scaramanga: What the hell was that? Best stunt ever and they put that godawful sound effect on it!
Nick Nack: That’s what Ive been trying to tell you all along, the producers don’t care what they’re doing any more!
Scaramanga: In that case, do you reckon we could get away with a flying car?
Nick Nack: I don’t see why not.
M has a rant.
Scaramanga: Oh, what have I done? Why have I wasted my time on these fools. M’s right: “fouled-up, half-witted operations.” He’s even shouting at Q.
Nick Nack: Good job we’ve got the homing device that Britt Ekland put in our boot. Shall I activate it? Bond will never find us otherwise.
Bond arrives at Scaramanga’s island base for dinner and a duel.
Nick Nack: Really, monsieur? Don’t you just want this over with?
Scaramanga: This place cost a lot. And nobody’s ever given Bond a proper tour of their base before. He’s usually sneaking around in the ventilation pipes.
Nick Nack: OK, so long as you promise not to discuss the ethics of the hired killer with him… You’re not going to do that, are you, monsieur?
Scaramanga: Why not? You don’t think there’s a place for serious moral debate?
Nick Nack: Not when you’ve just blown up a plane with a solar-powered gun, no.
Nick Nack: You’re doing this for art? I never knew that. I always assumed you were stroking your ego.
Scaramanga: I have higher ideals than that. I’m a gentleman, Nick Nack.
Nick Nack: But why have you waited for Roger Moore? Connery would have been a better test for a gentleman!
Scaramanga: I offered my services in ’65 after the book was published. But Cubby Broccoli told me they hadn’t run out of ideas. He said, “Come back when we’re desperate to convince the audience that Bond is so famous and deadly an assassin would waste an entire film trying to bump him off.”
Nick Nack: So you admit it, then?
Bond and Scaramanga spend ages having a surreal fight scene that would be far more interesting if we hadn’t already seen it during the pre-credit sequence.
Scaramanga: Did the Al Capone waxwork just move?
Nick Nack: Concentrate, monsieur. Otherwise you’ll give Bond a chance to shoot you… Oh.
Scaramanga: Damn, I didn’t realise that was the real Bond. I thought it was a dummy.
Nick Nack: Well, I did warn you.
With fifteen minutes of running time left, Britt Ekland balls things up to give Bond something to do.
Scaramanga: Ha ha, that woman is an idiot. She’s going to destroy everything.
Nick Nack: Aren’t you dead yet?
Scaramanga: I’m determined to make it to the end credits. Nobody’s bailed on BlogalongaBond yet.
Nick Nack: This film might change that.
Scaramanga: What the hell are you still doing here anyway? Get out while you can.
Nick Nack: The henchman is contractually obliged to make a ‘surprise’ attack in the film’s final scene.
Scaramanga: Aren’t you worried they’ll play the scene for laughs and trap you in a case?
Nick Nack: I am big. It’s the Bond films that got small.
Scaramanga: Oh well, at least you made it to the end of the film. I’m going to have to wait for The Lord Of The Rings trilogy for that…
Nick Nack: But, monsieur, Peter Jackson cut your scenes from The Return Of The King.
Scaramanga: Oh, fucking hell.
Simon Kinnear will return in The Spy Who Loved Me.