You Only Live Twice

January 10th, 2022
Author: Meredith Taylor

Roald Dahl’s name on the script should have meant a wittier and more grotesque adventure than this; although the car full of goons plucked off the road by a giant magnet and tossed into Tokyo Harbour is classic Dahl. The action scenes are often spectacular but inclined rather obviously to have been achieved with stuntmen by the second unit, with Connery’s close-ups clearly matted in later, heightening the sense of a star wandering in and out of his own movie.

The characterisations alotted most of the supporting cast tend to be bland, and the leading lady is bizarrely replaced with a new one during the interminable ‘Ninja Training School’ section that further postpones our first proper meeting with Donald Pleasance’s flesh-crawling Blofeld in his lair which resembles a megalomaniacal version of the launching pad beneath Jeff Tracy’s swimming pool from which Thunderbird One used to emerge).

An extremely large cast of speaking parts includes several well-known actors whose contribution bizarrely goes uncredited (including Alexander Knox as the US President), while others like Burt Kwouk as ‘Spectre 3’ are plainly dubbed. @RichardChatten

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