Live and Let Die (1973)
Reviewed on 2010 September 9
I always had a soft spot for this Bond, with the arguably creepiest opening sequence and general feeling of nastiness. When I saw this thing as a kid it just gave me the sense of watching something very wicked, and it’s still kind of a guilty pleasure even today.
Roger Moore’s first foray as Bond opens in New York, with an assassination at the UN that looks like the work of SPECTRE, and then takes an even darker turn in New Orleans before completely just completely sliding into Bosch hell at a Caribbean voodoo ceremony. Apparently there’s drug smuggling going on, under the guise of obeah rituals to scare people away. Whether he uses supernatural means or traditional methods, a shadowy figure named Dr. Kananga (Yaphet Katto) dispatches anyone who interferes with his enterprises, and the only man who can stop it is…
Moore is a prettier, suaver Bond than Connery and that’s fine with me. Parts of this were completely silly, even for a Bond movie, but not enough to keep me from enjoying it. I thought Julius Harris made a great henchman, smiling cheerfully even as he threatens to prune limbs off people. The theme song is my favorite, and who didn’t love Geoffrey Holder as Baron Samedi?
Three chocolate morsels.