Characters / Licence to Kill

Characters specific to Licence to Kill. For those in the entire film franchise, see here.

Franz Sanchez
Played by : Robert Davi

The most powerful drug lord in Latin America, having been wanted by the DEA for years. He is captured in the beginning of the movie, only to escape shortly afterwards and wreck havoc on Felix Leiter's life. Is arguably based on the version of Fransisco Scaramanga as seen in the original novel, but is considerably nicer, ironically.

  • Ax-Crazy: He goes Machete Crazy by the end of the film.
  • Bad Boss: He becomes this late in the film after he suffers a Villainous Breakdown.
  • Benevolent Boss: Subverted. Bond manipulates him into a state of paranoia, causing him to kill his own men.
  • Berserk Button: Let's just say that he doesn't take disloyalty very well.
  • Big Bad: The main antagonist of the film.
  • Bond One-Liner:
    Perez: What about the money, patron?
    Sanchez: Launder it.
  • The Cartel: His cocaine business is described as an "invisible empire from Chile to Alaska".
  • Composite Character: He has elements of Le Chiffre and Francisco Scaramanga (from the books), right down to the latter's name.
  • Domestic Abuser: He whips Lupe with a stingray tail when he catches her in bed with another man
  • Establishing Character Moment: Upon catching Lupe with another man, he orders the man's heart cut out and he personally whips Lupe.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Sanchez is a hospitable enough guy that you almost forget at times that he beats his girlfriend, has a guy's heart literally cut out, has Leiter's wife raped and murdered right before feeding Leiter to a shark, and shoves Krest into a decompression chamber (wrongfully thinking that he'd betrayed him).
  • Karmic Death: He dies after he gets soaked with the gasoline mixed with his cocaine, and is set ablaze by Bond with the lighter Felix and Della gave him as a gift.
  • Kill It with Fire: He gets a bath in drugged gasoline in the final chase, and Bond uses the lighter Leiter gave him to light Sanchez up and burn him to death. His tanker also explodes just to let you know he's Deader Than Dead.
  • Knight of Cerebus: The movie is already Darker and Edgier. Sanchez obviously doesn't help.
  • Lack of Empathy: He's doesn't register any emotion when subjecting his associates to his cold-blooded punishments, or when he feds Felix Leiter to the shark. More notorious in the latter case, where Krest is clearly nauseated watching, and Killifer almost faints.
  • Machete Mayhem: He uses one in his climatic fight with Bond.
  • Man of Wealth and Taste: Not really, if the kitsch style of his Big Fancy House is any indication. Franz has very much the taste of a thug off the streets despite his immense wealth.
  • Man on Fire: Bond uses the gift cigarette lighter at the end of the climax to ignite Sanchez's gasoline soaked clothes and turn him into a Roman Candle.
  • Nothing Personal: So he says to Leiter.
    Sanchez: I want you to know this is nothing personal. It's purely... business.
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain: Him Vs Bond and Leiter. Dalton was 45 when he starred in the movie, David Hedison was '62 and Robert Davi was 35.
  • President for Life: Sanchez is the real ruler of the Banana Republic that is Isthmus. He even has a meeting with "el Presidenté", where he informs the man that he is "replaceable", meaning that El Presidente is just a puppet.
    Sanchez: Remember, you're only President... For life.
  • Psychotic Smirk: He's a very cheerful guy... for all the wrong reasons.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Would have gotten away with his new scheme of smuggling cocaine by blending it with gasoline if not for his Disproportionate Retribution against Felix Leiter.
  • Right Hand Iguana: It even has a little diamond necklace that is seen in Lupe's possession at the end of the movie.
  • Terms of Endangerment: Does this right after finding his missing millions of dollars stashed in Krest's decompression chamber, when Krest claims that it isn't his money. "That's right, amigo. It is mine!" What follows is one of the most gruesome and disturbing death scenes in the whole series.
  • Tranquil Fury: He doesn't lose his cool when he thinks that he discovered that Krest was stealing from him. When his mook asks him what to do about the money, he looks like he's about to shrug it off.
  • Supervillain Lair: His drug refining facility, which is hidden behind the Olimpatec Meditation Institute.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: In Isthmus.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Toward the end of his reign.

Pam Bouvier
Played by : Carey Lowell

The last CIA agent alive on Leiter's list of contacts on the Sanchez file, she meets Bond in a bar in Bimini. She ends up helping him in his crusade against Sanchez.

  • Action Girl: Maybe the best example in the entirety of the Bond franchise. She never really needs to be saved by Bond; in fact, she saves him on several occasions.
  • Battle Couple: With Bond.
  • Boyish Short Hair: Lowell's hair was naturally short. Her first scenes actually have her wearing a wig, so in-universe, we have Bouvier get a haircut to allow Lowell's naturally short hair to shine in her "Miss Kennedy" persona.
  • Bond One-Liner/Deadpan Snarker:
    Dario: Ha-ha-ha... You're dead!
    Pam: You took the words right out of my mouth! [she shoots him]
  • Chekhov's Gunman: She was at Felix's wedding party and left early, with Bond walking in just as Felix was done with her, prompting the "strictly business" line.
  • Crazy-Prepared: She brought a shotgun and a bulletproof vest for the rendezvous with Bond, just in case. Turns out it was a wise decision because of Dario's arrival. She also keeps two small pistols with her when she arrives in Isthmus.
  • Distaff Counterpart: To Bond, clearly. Bond even underestimates her.
  • Girl of the Week: The main Bond Girl of the film.
  • Holy Backlight: Her first appearance to Dario after he apparently shoots her has her in a white robe and really overexposed lighting, with the implication that Dario's thinks he's actually seeing her ghost, but the Special Effects Failure means that the effect is far too subtle to be noticed on the first viewing.
  • The Lancer: She helps Bond in his crusade against Sanchez.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Through the film there's a lot of shots focused on her thights. She also strips down to her underwear as she and Bond load Sanchez's money on to the Wavekrest to frame Krest, and it doesn't take much of a close look to see that Pam isn't wearing anything under the dress she has on during the climax.
  • Real Women Don't Wear Dresses: She's not thrilled about being Bond's "secretary" in Isthmus City. She even asks him why he can't be her secretary.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Bond does a Double Take when he sees her after her makeover in a Sexy Backless Outfit.
  • She's Got Legs: As shown whenever she draws her .25 from her thigh holster.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: In bar brawls especially.
  • Show Some Leg: Uses this tactic towards Joe Butcher to enter Sanchez's drug factory.
  • Universal Driver's License: Land, air and sea. The "air" part is justified in that piloting is her specialty, while, technically speaking, all she did with the "sea" part was wiggle the steering wheel a bit and send it into full speed ahead.
  • Woman in White: When she enters Sanchez's facility. There was supposed to be a glow effect when Dario sees her for the final time, but Special Effects Failure meant it got fudged.

Lupe Lamora
Played by : Talisa Soto

Sanchez's mistress.

  • Broken Bird: Her introductory scene has Sanchez beating her with a stingray's tail, while his henchmen kill her lover and cut his heart out.
  • Domestic Abuse: Whipped by Sanchez for cheating him.
  • Gold Digger: A subversion. There are some elements of it, as by the time Bond goes to Sanchez's casino is seen that she and Sanchez apparently reconcilied and she enjoys the lavish gifts he gives her, but she shows to still be afraid of him when she's not in his presence. And at the end of the film, she takes Sanchez's iguana's diamond collar as a bracelet for herself.
  • Lady in Red: She wears a red dress in a lot of her scenes.
  • Meaningful Name: "Lamora"
  • Ms. Fanservice: Her scenes aboard the Wavekrest have her only in a red robe (although it becomes Fan Disservice when the scars from her whipping are shown), and her red dress at the casino had some considerable cleavage.
  • Neutral Female: Besides helping Bond in framing Krest and getting Bond out of Sanchez's mansion (and even that comes after prodding from Bond), she doesn't do anything proactive to help him, and isn't even involved in the climax. In fact, she tries to convince him to leave Isthmus and let Sanchez be, for fear of what Sanchez would do to him, to no avail.
  • Spicy Latina: While she doesn't have the fiery temper associated with the trope, which is expected being the battered mistress of a drug lord, she fits the rest of the tropes, right down to the tight, red clothing.
  • Sympathetic Adulterer: Given who Sanchez is, can you honestly blame Lupe for cheating on him?
  • Your Cheating Heart: Her opening scene has Sanchez catching her in bed with another man. Sanchez himself beats her with a stingray's tail while his henchmen kill the boyfriend and cut his heart out.

Played by : Benicio Del Toro

Sanchez's main and most loyal henchman.

  • Ax-Crazy: He completely loses it by the end of the movie. His expressions would make Jack Torrance proud.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Bond pulls him into the cocaine grinder, where the blades shred him to pieces. It's very slow and Dario's agonized screams don't help.
  • Dark Is Evil: Always dressed in dark clothes.
  • The Dragon: He's Sanchez's right-hand man.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Best shown when Felix Leiter asks where's his wife, and Dario tells him to not worry... because they gave her "a nice honeymoon", most likely as an Implied Post-Rape Taunt.
  • Giggling Villain: He giggles constantly, although it does evolve into Evil Laugh by the time of the climax.
  • Karmic Death: He tries to have Bond shredded in the cocaine grinder but falls in himself thanks to Pam's intervention.
  • Knife Nut: His Weapon of Choice, pulled out in a distinctive fashion every time.
  • Knight of Cerebus: In terms of Bond henchmen, while Sanchez is a Knight of Cerebus of Bond Big Bads, Dario is one of the henchmen. He even manages to be more Ax-Crazy, creepier and scarier then the other previous and later memorable and equally efficient henchmen (including the outlandishly gimmicky ones) such as Jaws, Necros and May Day.
  • Only One Name: Only called "Dario" through the film.
  • Psycho for Hire: To the point that he was fired by the Contras, according to Pam.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: It's strongly implied that he raped Leiter's wife before killing her.
    Leiter: Where's my wife?
    Dario: Don't worry. We gave her a nice honeymooooon!
  • Red Right Hand: He's got one metal tooth on his upper jaw.
  • Slasher Smile: Especially when he says the "honeymoon" line.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Sanchez. He stays behind in Sanchez's drug refining facility, even through it's exploding, to finish off Bond, and that's where he dies, but through a cocaine shredder rather than flames, which was reserved for his boss.
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain: Him vs. Bond. Del Toro was the youngest actor to be cast as a Bond henchman as he was 21 at the time of filming.
  • Terrible Trio: With Perez and Braun.

Milton Krest
Played by : Anthony Zerbe

Sanchez's henchman who operates the Wavekrest Marine Research as a front for Sanchez's drug trade.

  • Asshole Victim: Let's just say that his incompetence and perversion cost him dearly, though his Cruel and Unusual Death is quite excessive.
  • Blatant Lies: When Bond meets him.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Sanchez throws him inside his boat's decompression chamber and begins raising the pressure of the chamber. Once the pressure reaches a critical point, Sanchez, taking an axe, hacks through the air-pressure vent. The rapid decompression causes Krest's head to rapidly expand, then explode.
  • Death by Materialism: Subverted. Sanchez is led to think Krest died this way.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: As with Kilifer, he's clearly nauseated watching Leiter being fed to the shark.
  • Karmic Death: At least in the eyes of Sanchez, who kills him while he's locked with the money that Sanchez thinks he stole from him.
  • Mistaken for a Traitor: Krest may have been loyal to Sanchez the whole time, but between Bond's convincing tip to Sanchez about a possible traitor in his organization, and the presence of a huge pile of Sanchez' money on his boat, he ends up looking guilty as sin.
  • Wealthy Yacht Owner: And "marine biologist".
  • Your Head Asplode: Along with the rest of him when Sanchez locks him in a decompression chamber.

Colonel Heller
Played by: Don Stroud

Sanchez's head of security, he is the head of the Isthmus military. He is also a CIA grass who is trying to commandeer the Stinger missiles that Sanchez has stolen.

Truman Lodge
Played by: Anthony Starke

Sanchez's financial advisor and accountant.

Ed Kilifer
Played by: Everett McGill

A DEA agent who was bribed by Sanchez to help him escape and betray Felix Leiter.

Professor Joe Butcher
Played by: Wayne Newton

Sanchez's middleman and TV evangelist for Olimpatec Meditation Institute.

  • Affably Evil: Never raises his temper, even when Pam threatens him with a gun and steals back the money she brought in the first place.
  • Catch Phrase: "Bless your heart!".
  • Corrupt Church: His church is a front for Sanchez's drug operation. A bonus in that he rakes in plenty of legitimate profit in his own right.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Pam seduces him to get him out of the way before pulling a gun on him.
  • Karma Houdini: Besides the lizard, Lamora and El Presidente, the only top-level associate of Sanchez's that doesn't die a brutally horrible death.
  • Laughably Evil: His Affably Evil persona, constant Catch Phrase ("Bless your heart!") and the fact most of his scenes are humorous in contrast to the dark tone of the film.
  • Light Is Not Good: A televangelist running a sham cult that hides a drug-dealing operation.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Acts as this for his scenes to give audiences a breather due to the film being Darker and Edgier.
  • Preacher Man: A televangelist.

El Presidente Hector Lopez
Played by: Pedro Armendáriz Jr.

The President of Isthmus.

  • Banana Republic: Isthmus is a clear analogue for Panama.
  • Chest of Medals: As fitting for a (Puppet) Generalissimo.
  • The Generalissimo: Is basically a pastiche of every South American dictator over the last fifty years.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Sort of. With Sanchez gone, Lopez is no longer to any obligations and attends a party at Sanchez's residence at the end of the film. He is last seen meeting Lupe Lamora and falling in love with her.
  • Pornstache: Wears one.
  • President for Life: As long as Sanchez approves, that is. Because Lopez is just a puppet and Sanchez is the real ruler of Isthmus.

Played by: Frank McRae

A friend of Felix Leiter, he owns a boat charter business and was chosen by Leiter to be his Best Man alongside Bond for his wedding. He later helps Bond to investigate Krest's facility and yacht.

Della Leiter, née Churchill
Played by: Priscilla Barnes

The bride of Felix Leiter, she is raped and killed by Sanchez's men on her wedding night.