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I just discovered this morning (Wednesday, May 27) that the Syfy cable channel is running a James Bond movie marathon all day. Here is my take on the final four movies they’ll show.

5:30 p.m. CDT — The World is Not Enough (1999) — I consider the opening sequence of this movie to be the best opening sequence of any Bond film. It starts with Bond (Pierce Brosnan) thinking nothing of escaping out of a window many stories up of an office building in Bilbao, Spain using nothing but a thin rope after some bad guys attack him. Then it moves on to London where Bond gets into a boat chase down the Thames River in London while chasing yet another villain. The opening credits roll and then the movie falls flat. Bond is sent on a mission to uncover who is trying to control the world’s oil supplies and discovers something even more sinister. You know how the Bond films end with Bond winning. But we are always treated to a little tension and excitement along the way. Not with this one.

8 p.m. CDT — Die Another Day (2002) — It was Brosnan’s final film as Bond and a good one. It starts with him being captured in North Korea and then released. There is a nice tension-filled scene with Bond and ‘M’ (Judi Dench) after Bond is released. She is not happy with the price paid for Bond’s freedom. Then he pairs up with Halle Berry to stop a psycho billionaire and his North Korean partner from developing the world’s most dangerous weapon to date. Notable scenes include Bond’s fencing battle in a London club. Madonna has a brief appearance as a fencer. And I give her credit for singing a pretty good theme song.

11 p.m. CDT — Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) — Brosnan took this second turn as Bond and it is his best. He’s out to stop Elliot Carver, wonderfully played by Jonathon Pryce, who is willing to start World War III to help his gigantic media empire grow. Michelle Yeoh is a great as a Chinese agent that pairs up with Bond to stop Pryce. And for a few moments, Bond is a little more human as he is reunited with former love interest Paris Carver (Teri Hatcher). I loved the car chase scene where Bond is in the back seat of his car and controlling it from ther with a device about the size of cellphone.

1:30 a.m. CDT — Dr. No (1962) — The movie that started it all. As you watch, you can almost feel the Jamaican breeze and you definitely sense the mystery as Sean Connery goes on his first mission at 007 to find out why a British secret service agent was murdered. It leads him to Dr. No (Joseph Wiseman) and of course like any Bond villain, he wants to screw up the world. Ursula Andress is the first Bond woman. And many consider the scene where she walks out of the ocean, after diving for shells, in “the bikini” as one of the most memorable in film history.

UNTIL NEXT TIME. . .

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