Which key factors help to create the best Bond films

1964: Actor Sean Connery poses as James Bond next to his Aston Martin DB5 in a scene from the United Artists release 'Goldfinger' in 1964 Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Every Bond fan will probably have a favourite Bond movie and there are so many to choose from. Older fans will probably be nostalgic for the very first film, Dr. No (1962), which first introduced our hero. While younger fans may prefer the latest ones like Spectre (2015) or Casino Royale (2006). But what makes each film great is dependent on a variety of factors. Some would say that the main things that make up a great Bond film include the villains, the bond women, the gadgets, and the cars.

The Villains

One of the main factors that help to make a Bond film great are the villains who are up against 007. Throughout Bond history there have been a lot of favourite James Bond villains like Alec Trevelyan, Francisco Scaramanga, Le Chiffre, and Dr. No. However, arguably the most iconic villain who has appeared in seven bond films is Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

Some great villains haven’t always been the main evil mastermind either but rather henchmen, sidekicks, and associates. Oddjob was an unforgettable henchman with his bowler hat. Some of the most dangerous have been villainous women like Pussy Galore and Xenia Onatopp.

Honorable mentions –

  • Ernst Stavro Blofeld – You Only Live Twice (1967), Spectre (2015), From Russia With Love (1963) etc.
  • Auric Goldfinger – Goldfinger (1964)
  • Jaws – The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), Moonraker (1979)

The Gadgets

Now, James Bond is obviously not going to get far without some useful and quirky gadgets. Luckily, Q is always around with some great new inventions to use. Sometimes his gadgets would be disguised as everyday items like a briefcase loaded with lethal weapons, a buzz-saw wristwatch, or a tracker fountain pen. Some of the best James Bond gadgets were actually what the villains used instead. Scaramanga in The Man With The Golden Gun (1974) has a custom-built gun that is disguised in parts that fit together: a lighter, cigarette case, cuff-link, and fountain pen.

James Bond also wouldn’t be anywhere without his pistols. One of the most famous guns in 007’s arsenal, and one of the most famous guns from movies full stop, is the Walther PPK. It is Bond’s signature pistol and has been featured in almost every Bond film since Dr.No (1962).

Honorable mentions –

  • Leather briefcase – From Russia With Love (1963)
  • X-ray glasses – The World Is Not Enough (1999)
  • Remote control BMW car – Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)

The Cars

Every great Bond film involves a good old chase of one kind or another. In film history, Bond has been in tense chases that involve running through buildings, and also involving speedboats, tankers, motorbikes, and fast cars. Just like with his weapons, Bond is very precious about his cars (even if he does end up destroying them). The most iconic car brand that has been used by Bond is Aston Martin.

It has been a car brand used time and time again over the years, as far back as 007’s early beginnings in the 1960s. Each time, there are new gadgets loaded in it ready to help Bond flee the bad guys. There have also been many other car brands that have been featured in Bond films too including Toyota, Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz.

Honorable mentions –

  • Aston Martin DB5 – Goldfinger (1964)
  • Lotus Esprit S1 – The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
  • Aston Martin Vanquish – Die Another Day (2002)

The Bond Girls

As well as fast cars, cool gadgets, and iconic villains, every 007 film also has one or two Bond girls in it too. Bond girls have been a key part of the film series ever since Ursula Andress walked out of the sea in Dr. No (1962). While all Bond girls are beautiful, they are all quite different from each other. They have their own quirks, skills, and expertise. Some Bond women have been staples throughout Bond’s career such as M and Moneypenny. While others have been Bond’s assistant, ally, or opponent.

In this article by ScreenRant, they rank every bond girl from best to worst and there are a range of women who make it to the top of the list. Whether it was Sean Connery’s Bond, Pierce Brosnan’s, or Roger Moore’s, there have been plenty of women who have made their mark in Bond films.

Honorable mentions –

  • Honey Rider  – Dr.No (1962)
  • Pussy Galore – Goldfinger (1964)
  • Tracy Draco – On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)