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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)



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Often argued the best Bond film in the series, On Her Majesty's Secret Service is extremely faithful to its source material, which is arguably the best Bond book as well. Connery had quit, and George Lazenby, who was not a professional actor at the time, was chosen to replace him. Many dislike him, while many others admire his boyish, roguish interpretation who seems, more than any of the others, like the type who would mistreat 'Q's gadgets and reward himself with wine, women, and gambling for his work. But liked or disliked, most of the credit for pulling together such a well-crafted piece of work goes to director Peter R. Hunt, who had edited previous Bond films with a new style of editing that broke all the rules. That style shows through strongly here. Diana Rigg is fantastic as Tracy; a very highly revered, respected actress playing arguably the strongest Bond girls ever. The requisite 'M' scene is one of the strongest, delving deeply into the relationships between the characters on the home front. On Her Majesty's Secret Service also boasts the best on-screen Blofeld, Telly Savalas, who, save for his accent, fits Blofeld's mold like it was made for him. The first trademark ski sequence is another noteworthy point, but these fringe delights are only icing on the cake. This film is exquisite at its core, having one of the strongest plots and being the best with regard to characterization. Highly recommended.

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