Friday, July 10, 2015
Never Say Never Again (1983) | Women
Lady in Bahamas doesn't even get a name, but I like her for a couple of reasons. First, I dig that she's just hanging out in the Bahamas on her own vacation, doing some deep sea fishing. She flirts with Bond when she first meets him, but she's not falling over herself about him. She appears to be independent and confident.
The second thing I like about her is that she's played by Valerie Leon. Leon had a bit part in The Spy Who Loved Me as a hotel receptionist, but Hammer horror fans know her as Margaret/Tera in Blood from the Mummy's Tomb.
If you'd asked 16-year-old me his favorite Bond Girl, he would have told you Fatima Blush. But that was all about the thong. I might have told you it was also about her confidence, but grown-up me realizes how shallow her self-assurance really is. She's a fake and a super dangerous one.
It's tough not to compare Kim Basinger's Domino with the ones from the novel and the previous movie. Literary Domino is one of my favorite women in the books and Claudine Auger - despite her weakness as an actress - brings some heat and fury to the part that Basinger is sadly missing. In Never Say Never Again, Domino is more prop than character. That's mostly a script problem. She at least gets her revenge on Largo for the death of her brother, but the rest of the time she's weakly submissive to first Largo and then Bond. Basinger's still able to make her likeable, but I end up pitying her when I want to admire her.
My Favorite Bond Women
1. Tracy Bond (On Her Majesty's Secret Service)
2. Melina Havelock (For Your Eyes Only)
3. Paula Caplan (Thunderball)
4. Tatiana Romanova (From Russia With Love)
5. Fiona Volpe (Thunderball)
6. Domino Derval (Thunderball)
7. Holly Goodhead (Moonraker)
8. Mary Goodnight (The Man with the Golden Gun)
9. Andrea Anders (The Man with the Golden Gun)
10. Honey Rider (Dr. No)