Rake that moon, white boy.

Moonraker

Come on, baby, make it hurt so good.

What the hell is this movie’s problem? On one hand, it’s almost completely incomprehensible, alternating between daredevil set pieces (the pre-credits sequence, involving a long walk out of a short airplane sans parachute, is a stunner) and clunky, ham-fisted plot tangents. It’s a bizarre marriage of spectacle and goofiness that never seems sure of what it’s trying to be.

Richard Kiel’s Jaws, one of the best villains of the entire series, is back, but completely pussy-whipped. It’s sad to see a formerly great henchmen reduced to a role of comic buffoonery and lovestruck adoration for his ladyfair, but such is life. I liked Jaws better in the earlier film, when he was a huge Great White shark that ate Robert Shaw’s boat. And Robert Shaw’s compressed air tanks. And Robert Shaw.

With that said, I found myself, to my unabashed horror, actually enjoying parts of this film. The dialogue is agreeably silly, and Roger Moore has completely made the character his own by this point, replacing Connery’s tough machismo with a charismatic suaveness that holds up well. The third act is just as bad as you’ve heard (Bond in SPACE!?), but I was never tempted to turn the DVD off. And I guess that says something.

And I love Shirley Bassey’s theme song too. There, I said it.

-CSJ

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