Starring : Roger Moore, Maud Adams, Louis Joudan, Kabir Bedi, Steven Berkoff, Kristina Wayborn, Vijay Amritraj, David Meyer, Desmond Llewelyn, Robert Brown, Geoffrey Keen, Walter Gotell, Douglas Wilmer, Lois Maxwell, and Michaela Clavell.
Directed by : John Glen.
Released : June 6th, 1983.
Partly inspired by the short story, “The Property of a Lady”, by Ian Fleming, “Octopussy” is a completely original script from start to finish and isn’t based on any of the James Bond novels. This thirteenth film in the James Bond 007 franchise sees Roger Moore returning as James Bond himself. This time, the villains are a jewel-stealing general (Steven Berkoff) and a very wealthy Afghan prince (Louis Jourdan). Bond links this general, who is stealing some valuable items from the Russian government, to the Afghan prince and his sexy associate, Octopussy herself (Maud Adams). What are their evil plans this time around you ask? Well, these guys intend to force Europe to disarm themselves by use of a nuclear weapon.
Many see this film as quite possibly the worst James Bond movie ever made period. That sort of criticism isn’t too difficult to grasp after having seen the film. Before we get into what’s so bad about “Octopussy”, let’s try and see if we can pull anything good out of it because there are ‘some’ good things about the film. One thing “Octopussy” has going for it is the exquisite performance of Louis Jourdan; the stunts are well done, especially in sequences involving a train and an aircraft; last but not least, it has two important things that are crucial to any James Bond flick — Lots of beautiful elegant locations and lots of beautiful women. Not only do they have a huge finale with a whole army of allied women to help Bond fight the bad guys, they even went as far as dressing the women up in skintight camel-toe red jumpsuits.
So what’s so bad about “Octopussy”? I’ll give you the summed up version — James Bond + Clown costume + Gorilla costume + Tarzan shout = What am I watching? We know James Bond is a secret agent and that secret disguises are a significant aspect of his career but dressing up as a clown and as a gorilla? Then screaming like Tarzan during a jungle chase scene? Who’s ideas were these? Those aren’t the only burdens that “Octopussy” faces, the movie boasts stale humor and poor villains as well. Despite an impressive and likable performance, Louis Jourdan’s villainous Afghan prince, Kamal, isn’t at the same level as say baddies like Goldfinger or Blofeld for instance. These guys here are pretty forgettable. Not to worry though, this isn’t the only film where James Bond had to face some pretty forgettable foes.