Pierce Brosnan — The Mysterious Bond

Read my overview of the James Bond franchise

The third major Bond actor (ignoring the minor ones), Pierce Brosnan's road to the role has been written about thousands of times, so I'll leave it at: Brosnan was offered the part, but the press caused his failing show, Remington Steel, to be resurrected, forcing him to pass and giving Dalton what turned out not to be his big break. Eight years later, Brosnan finally became Bond, saving the dying franchise

James BondHis version of the super-spy is a combination of those who went before him, toning down their traits. He's got the boyish foolishness mixed with cold violence that marked Connery's and the elegance and grace of Moore's, while tossing off quips like both. He is vulnerable like Lazenby's and has inherited Dalton's Bond's barely controlled seething anger and intensity. These personality attributes don't always fit together well, but if you're looking for a complex, multi-layered Bond, here's your man.

Once again, this Bond is wanted by all women. As for all men wanting to be him, well, yes, but not as much as Connery's or Moore's. This Bond is cool and powerful, but troubled. He's mysterious, keeping much of his real self hidden (thus the one-liners are a defense mechanism, unlike for Moore's, where he said them because it was fun). This Bond is an enigma who is suppressing great pain.

The four Brosnan films are all extravaganzas, offering the most spectacular stunts, lavish chases, and colorful cinematography of the franchise.  These movies look good.  They are built to be light entertainment, but take the pain of Bond and others more seriously.

The personnel have undergone some changes.  Desmond Llewelyn is still around as Q, but he died during the Brosnan years to be replace by John Cleese, initially playing R.  The old M is gone, and the new one is played by an over-serious Judi Dench.  She lightens up as the films progress.  Miss Moneypenny is still Miss Moneyoenny, but she's now played by attractive Samantha Bond as a modern woman.  His main contacts outside of MI6 tend toward the comic.  Jack Wade is a light-hearted CIA agent who is able to pop up anywhere.  In an odd bit of casting, he's given life by Joe Don Baker who had played the villain in The Living Daylights.  Robbie Coltrane shows up in two films as a Russian crime boss with a hard-to-fathom fondness for Bond.

The Brosnan films are:



The Devil Says

See It

(And Own It)

This is everything a Bond flick should be: hot women, violence and explosions, and a cool super spy that's living the life you dream of. GoldenEye is fast, colorful, and filled with all the sinning I love so well.

Gadgets Low
Absurdity of evil plot Average
Killer fish Nope

A Russian general destroys a secret space facility to hide his theft of the GoldenEye satellite weapon. Bond heads to the ex-Soviet Union to find a mysterious crime lord who has plans for the devise that wouldn't be good for Queen and country. Luckily, he meets up with delectable Natalya Simonova, a computer programmer who survived the general's crime. After that, it's ejector seats on helicopters, a chase down crowded streets in a tank, an exploding armored train, missiles, plane crashes, and more automatic fire than even The Devil can count.

GoldenEyeBrosnan inhabits Bond and the action scenes are the best in the entire series (the pre-credits sequence gives the leap off a cliff from The Spy Who Loved Me a run for the money). The villain is a winner and the humor works. But those are minor compared to the Bond girls.  Izabella Scorupco's Natalya Simonova and Famke Janssen's Xenia Onatopp are arguably the finest pairing in twenty-two films. Scorupco, a Swedish model and pop star does the old "hot-chick styles her hair differently and puts on glasses to become an intellectual" thing and this time, it works. At all times you can tell that this is one fuckable babe, but it is also easy to accept her as a computer nerd. This Bond girl is more than a plot point. She's got a personality and is the most developed character in the series after the star. She gets substantial screen time as this is her story as much as 007's, and it is a compelling one. Bond is the superman that's fun to watch, and Natalya is the heart. She's strong without being a gun-toting Amazon. Bond girls fall into two categories: girls with guns and screamers. She's a new category.

As enjoyable as she is, nothing beats Onatopp. She likes killing...a lot. A whole lot. Every death sends shivers of ecstasy through her. She murders an admiral by crushing him with her thighs during sex and she climaxes as he stops breathing. I don't feel sorry for him.  Can you think of a better way to die?  She orgasms as she machineguns a room full of computer programmers (the tremor in Janssen's lip is delightful).  Oh, she is my kind of woman! And you've never seen anyone fill out a Russian uniform the way she does. Unfortunately, it isn't the standard cut for women in their military.

GoldenEye is not only a great Bond film, it is one of the best action flicks of all time. It could use more sinning of course, but there's enough so I always have a theater playing it in Hell.

Following the fads: Haackers 90s entertainment was filled with haackers.

Sins (What does this mean?)

Pride More than in the other Brosnan films, Bond likes himself and is in control.
Sloth Nada.
Avarice Baccarat at the casino.  He's comfortable with the rich and famous.
Gluttony Not much. A few drinks.
Wrath While Bond is still mainly motivated by passion, Wrath is now an issue. He is driven by his anger, both to avenge his friend, and then to repay the betrayal. And yes, it gives him a bit of an edge when he needs it.

As for surrogate cruelty, four villains (well, one villain, one accomplice, and two lackeys) all die in lovely ways.  You'll savor each. Then there's Xenia Onatopp orgasming whenever she kills. There are also lots and lots of other deaths. So many. Bond indiscriminately slaughters so many poor guards and soldiers just doing their jobs, not to mention a few civilians who happened to be driving on the road at the wrong time. It's a lot of fun.
Beauty Of course the two beautiful babes, and if you want man-meat, there's Pierce Brosnan at his best. Hell, he's almost as good looking as me.

The picture looks great, and while Bond has seen better architecture and natural wonders, the travelogue isn't bad.
Thought He calls it instincts, but this Bond is a thinking man.
Humor Light and fun throughout, there are the occasional one-liners, a healthy dose of innuendo, and several characters provide comic relief.
Lust My man Bond is back after several lust-low entries.  He's once again the icon for the sin.  And, once again, he's a whore.  I do love whores.  He fucks the inspector sent to "check him out" and gets a good report.  He also takes time out of his busy killing schedule to bed the hot computer chick. He doesn't bop the girl with the death fetish, but that's just as well for him, and she does get off multiple times.



Tomorrow Never Dies

The Devil Says

See It

The second Brosnan film is slightly darker than the first, but is otherwise a close cousin, with high levels of excitement and a general aura of Saturday afternoon coolness. Bond is back to fuck some women and kill some bad guys, and he's not concerned about the order.

Gadgets High
Absurdity of evil plot Average
Killer fish Nope

The head bad guy is Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce), a megalomaniacal media mogul who sinks a British ship, steals one of its missiles, and blames it on the Chinese.  James Bond is dispatched to ascertain the truth before war breaks out. It helps his investigation that Carver's wife is one of his old lovers (ah, there are so many), one who he was closer to than normal. Bond isn't the only one suspicious of Carver. Chinese agent and martial arts master Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh) is also on the case

Teri HatcherElliot Carver is the most colorful villain since the Connery years, raving about the power of words and responding to reports of disasters with "Outstanding" and "Delicious." He's a thinly veiled parody of right-wing control freak Rupert Murdoch, owner of News Corp, Fox News, and many others, making Tomorrow Never Dies one of the only James Bond movies with a theme (beyond promoting sinning, of course). But as this is Bond, the examination of the problems with modern media never gets in the way of a good machine gunning.

The two main Bond girls are Teri Hatcher and Michelle Yeoh. Hatcher's Paris Carver is in the mold of many babes before her, but she has all the right curves to fit that mold exquisitely.  Plus she dresses well. Garter belt and stockings are always the proper choice, particularly without a dress. Yeoh's  Wai Lin is a bit different—the first Bond girl who is his equal as a spy.  Anya Amasova in The Spy Who Loved Me had been a good agent (certainly superior to the many red-shirted MI6 and CIA operatives who die in every film), but Lin, like Bond, is a super-spy who can perform impossible feats. Her Hong Kong-style fights are a change of pace that fits awkwardly into the Bond universe. We've had ninjas and karate school girls before, but they had a fake Hollywood feel instead of a fake 90s wire-work feel. I am more concerned with how her clothing fits, covering her far too completely. She kicks well, and is attractive, but Lin isn't sexy and Yeoh isn't playing her that way. She's also chemistry low with Bond, which isn't a problem until they are suddenly supposed to be attracted to each other. Oh well, that's why it's important to have multiple Bond girls.

Following the fads: Fox News and the 24 hour news cycle. Rupert Murdoch changing news into personal power. Upsurge in popularity of chopsocky outside of cult cinema.

Sins (What does this mean?)

Pride Bond is damn cool and knows it vs Carver who is trying to prove his worth, which never works out well. But there are a few cracks in Bond's Pride. The kind of this sin is being rewritten. Yes, he's filled with past pain, which means past doubts. It's foggy here, but it is the direction the franchise is headed.
Sloth Nada.
Avarice Bond's too busy breaking into labs, boarding stealth ships, and being chased through the streets to live the high life. He stays at a nice hotel, but nothing really showy. Even Carver doesn't have the old-school Bond villain level of stuff.
Gluttony Nothing except for vodka. See Avarice.
Wrath Bond of the past was always cool, and he usually still is, but anger is showing through. Does it help him? Not really. He kills in anger, but he would have blown the guy away just as well if he'd done it with boyish glee.

Surrogate cruelty works better, presenting plenty of painful deaths for viewers to revel in. Too many henchman are shot to count them all, and there's a plethora of non-bullet executions. I'm fond of the giant drill.
Beauty Beautiful islands and superb cinematography. I love the look of the South China Sea, which is handy as there isn't a whole lot else to excite anyone looking for art.
Thought Tomorrow Never Dies is a satire. That means it has an over-all, thoughtful statement to make. That is unusual for Bond, which focuses more on shooting than thinking. Enjoy it while it lasts.
Humor Some good lines, most recited by the supporting cast. Overall, a more serious outing—not as light as the Connery or Moore films.
Lust Teri Hatcher has one fine ass, and her other parts are pretty sweet as well. Michelle Yeoh isn't bad either, but she's nearly sexless while running around with 007. Bond has both fun, meaningless sex and emotional, meaningless sex. It's a good showing for the sin, but for Bond films, it is on the low side.



The World is Not Enough

The Devil Says

See It

(But don't rush)

“There's no point living, if you can't feel alive.” I couldn't have said it better. Of course the statement would have carried more weight if the good guys said it, but wisdom is wisdom, no matter the source.

The story is as preposterous as ever, though it manages to seem less fantastic for an hour. Sir Robert King, a wealthy old friend of M's, is murdered by deranged Renard, a man who feels no pain. Renard had kidnapped King's daughter Elektra a few years earlier, and now appears to be killing off everyone that made that an unsuccessful crime. Bond sets off to protect Elektra, who is continuing the work on her father's oil pipeline. But all is not what it seems, which becomes clear when Renard steals a nuclear bomb. It's a good thing Bond has the help of scientist Christmas Jones.

Gadgets High
Absurdity of evil plot Average
Killer fish Nope

While the plot, double-entendres, and stunts are old-style Bond (and in the case of the stunts, better than average), 007 himself is  sulkier than usual. Of course that could be old-style as well—think Dalton. I like my Bond to sin and revel in it. In The World is Not Enough, sinning is just part of the job. Renard shares Bond's poor mood, showing us that good and evil can join together, at least in being grumpy.

Maybe it's an inferiority complex coming from Renard's realization that he's an uninteresting villain (good thing he's not alone on the dark side). Actor Robert Carlyle emotes with wild abandon, but doesn't have enough of a character to make it meaningful.

James BondElektra, played with rich sexuality and power by Sophie Marceau, is a fine addition to the Bond girl pool. She smolders. Denis Richards's Dr. Jones doesn't do so well. She's more boppy than sensual. Too bad she's even worse as a plot device. Accepting her as a nuclear physicist is beyond anyone's suspension of disbelief as she wars with Tanya Roberts for the title of Worst Bond Girl.

Character-wise, this is a sub-par outing, but the action is top notch. Leaping speed boats, exploding balloons, helicopters with buzz saws, paragliding snowmobiles, and snipers everywhere.

There's a lot to love in this film, but a basic problem pulls it down: It can't go where it should. They set up a situation where the viewer's sympathy should be with the villain. M and M's old friend are the bad guys and Bond is working for their version of the world, which puts him on the wrong side, emotionally. The story is set up to say something about the power structure of the West, and Britain particularly, but then it backs down, because that wouldn't make a Bond film. So a nuclear plot is added and the villains suddenly aren't about justifiable revenge but a typical evil plan. It doesn't fit and makes the whole thing uneven. Who are we supposed to be rooting for? M's friend is a scumbag of the highest order. M is part of an uncaring establishment, but that's the side we are supposed to support.

With The World is Not Enough the transformation of Bond is complete. He is not the man he was during Connery's and Moore's runs. He is no longer a man of Pride who runs on Lust. He's now a man of pain who runs on Wrath. That not only makes for an unhappy Bond, it makes for an entirely different character. GoldenEye and Tomorrow Never Dies had a Bond in two different worlds, but now he is set. This is the Bond that Craig's version would become, given a few years to bury his pain.

Sins (What does this mean?)

Pride 007 is proud, but anger and mysterious pain make a less proud Bond.
Sloth Nada.
Avarice There's a lot of nice things here and there, and a beautiful home, but not much here is going to make you want to join the rich set.
Gluttony A few drinks and that's it.
Wrath Bond is filled with Wrath and once or twice it gives him that added boost he needs. But it is an unbalanced sin and more often it just sits behind his eyes. Wrath can be great, but it should never be a replacement for Lust or Pride.

The body count is high, and Bond finally takes out a girl at close range. Building on the previous entry, Bond gets tortured just a bit; that will increase in the next two films. Wow, torture is becoming mainstream entertainment.
Beauty "I take pleasure in great beauty," says Bond as he lies in bed with Elektra, and she is that. The travelogue shots pale next to the female flesh, with the best being of London.
Thought Bond's a smart man, but it doesn't show here.
Humor Bond has the regular quips. Robbie Coltrane and John Cleese (as Q's underling R) add comic relief. However, this is not a funny installment. Pain is the lead story and we don't even get dark humor.
Lust Bond gets the girls, but he doesn't seem to enjoy it all that much. Serena Scott Thomas (as the well named Dr. Molly Warmflash) makes for the type of brief encounter that dreams are made of, and then there's Sophie Marceau...  There is also Denise Richards, who is cute and physically fit, proving that there is more to Lust than physical attractiveness, and she's missing it.



Die Another Day

The Devil Says

See It

(But don't put it high on your Bond viewing list)

The last Brosnan film elevates the fantasy action and degree of sci-fi gadgetry while darkening the drama. Yeah, that means uneasy bedfellows, and I'm not talking about Bond and the gals. Still, Die Another Day is an enjoyable romp.

Bond stops a renegade Korean officer and his plan to sell conflict diamonds, but is captured and tortured. Traded for a terrorist when Western secrets are exposed, Bond is confined by MI6 and taken off active duty. Desiring to prove that he didn't talk and get some payback, he escapes and does the globe trotting that he does so well, discovering that a flamboyant corporate exec with ties to the Koreans and wealth based on conflict diamonds has built a satellite that could threaten the West.

Gadgets High
Absurdity of evil plot Average
Killer fish Nope

What's with Brosnan and torture? In Tomorrow Never Dies he's shown the torture implements as if he's in an inquisition film, in The World is Not Enough he's placed in a torture chair, and in Die Another Day he gets the full treatment. Certainly I'm a big fan of torture, but I was unaware (I'm not omnipotent—no one is) that everyone else was a fan. It seems the producers knew that their audience had a hard-on for it, but didn't want to shock anyone, so slowly built up, over four films, to the genital beating that would grace Casino Royale. You're a funny species, but I'm glad to see you wholeheartedly embracing Surrogate Cruelty.

Halle BerryBrosnan's in control of the Bond character, but he's starting to look a bit worn. It works this time since those months of torture should leave him a bit strained, but it was time for him to leave the franchise. It's nice that he left without making that one-to-many the way both Connery and Moore did.

Halle Berry and Rosamund Pike do their jobs, and end up somewhere in the low-middle of the Bond girl pack. Berry's Jinx starts out in the upper echelons as a highly sexed mystery woman, but ends up as another in a long line of straightforward government agents. Once she and Bond begin working together the chemistry is middling. Pike gets better as the film progresses, which is nice as much of this film fades in the second half.

Forget the characters; it's action that counts, and Die Another Day has some of the best you'll see anywhere. At the kick-ass level there's the opening hovercraft battle with Bond taking on a Korean army. It sets the tone for the movie, and who doesn't love close combat flamethrower use? But it isn't all sharp. In the lackluster department there's Bond's escape via rocket ice-car. There's no tension, just the need to show off another vehicle. That scene leads directly to the series' most embarrassing moment since Connery's Bond put on his Japanese make-up: Bond paragliding/surfing through icy water. The CGI skills are lacking, making it obvious that Brosnan has been replaced by animation. Sad. The final paired off fights are shot and edited poorly and by then a few too many things have exploded.

The most thrilling scene is old-school: a sword fight. It's not what you expect from Bond, which may be why it works so well.

Sins (What does this mean?)

Pride Gotta love the way the man, wet and ill kept, strides into a luxury hotel. But there's as much stubbornness as there is Pride.
Sloth Nada.
Avarice The good life looks pretty good and we're shown why you want diamonds. It's good to have the presidential suite and your tailor show up at a whim.
Gluttony Bond eats well and drinks better.
Wrath If you like torture, we've got torture. Also some run of the mill deaths and several that have the right amount of happy barbarity. I do love jet engines.

Again, Bond is angry, though not quite as much as in the previous outing. Wrath might have gotten him through his torture. It also drives him, which is necessary since passion doesn't seem to any more.
Beauty Halle Berry is worth protracted artistic study, the ice palace is impressive, and here and there the scenery is nice, but nothing to get excited about.
Thought 007 shows more signs of a brain than he did in The World is Not Enough, but he's still in "blunt instrument" mode.
Humor Bond is low on one-liners, but Jinx takes up the slack. And John Cleese does what John Cleese does best.
Lust Recovering from his last film's business-oriented only sex, Bond hops on the two Bond girls purely because he wants to. Bravo. Berry looks fine in her Ursula Andress swimsuit.



My Bond Reviews

The Connery Films
The Lazenby Film
The Moore Films
The Dalton Films
The Craig Films


Buy Them






A differnt View of a Bond Girl

Famke Janssen nude
Famke Janssen






A differnt View of a Bond Girl

Izabella Scorupco nude
Izabella Scorupco looking quite different than her scientist in GoldenEye



Bond Girls

Izabella Scorupco: Natalya Simonova
Famke Janssen: Xenia Onatopp
Tomorrow Never Dies
Teri Hatcher: Paris Carver
Michelle Yeoh: Wai Lin
The World Is Not Enough
Sophie Marceau: Elektra King
Denise Richards: Christmas Jones
Die Another Day
Halle Berry: Jinx
Rosamund Pike: Miranda Frost





Bond Villains

Alec Trevelyan (Sean Bean)
Tomorrow Never Dies
Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce)
The World Is Not Enough
Elektra King (Sophie Marceau)
Renard (Robert Carlyle)
Die Another Day
Gustav Graves (Toby Stephens)



A differnt View of a Bond Girl

Teri Hatcher topless
Teri Hatcher




Frederick's of Hollywood, Inc.



A differnt View of a Bond Girl

Denise Richards nude
Denise Richards




The Wine Messenger



A differnt View of a Bond Girl

Sophie Marceau nude
Sophie Marceau






A differnt View of a Bond Girl

halle berry topless
Holle Berry