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Film / A View to a Kill

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Zorin: Intuitive improvisation is the secret of genius.
Bond: Herr Doktor Mortner would be proud of his creation.

The one where Bond goes black...and never goes back, and teams up with John Steed.

A View to a Kill is the fourteenth James Bond film in the Eon Productions series, the third to be directed by John Glen and the seventh and final installment to star Roger Moore. Also notable for being the final Bond film to feature Lois Maxwell as Moneypenny. The only thing this movie uses from the Ian Fleming short story From a View to a Kill (from the anthology For Your Eyes Only) are five words from the title and Paris as a setting. Duran Duran performed the Title Theme Tune which is, to date, the only Bond song to make it to number 1 on the US pop charts.note 

After a Zorin Industries computer chip is found in Siberia, Bond is sent to investigate the company at a horse race competition. With the help of the geologist (and Girl of the Week) Stacey Sutton (Tanya Roberts), Bond finds out that the company's owner Max Zorin (Christopher Walken as a shamelessly over-the-top villain) and his lover May Day (Grace Jones as one of the most genuinely intimidating henchwomen of the series) plan to destroy California's Silicon Valley to ensure he has the monopoly on the production of computer chips.

Preceded by Octopussy and followed by The Living Daylights with Timothy Dalton succeeding Moore as Bond.

This film provides examples of:

  • The '80s: Duran Duran doing the theme song, Grace Jones, Tanya Roberts, a title sequence filled to the brim with day-glo effects and chicks with '80s Hair, the use of wailing electric guitars in the score... this is very much a film of its time.
  • '80s Hair: This was the only Bond film from the '80s to truly show this, from Stacy's feathery bangs to May Day's box cut. To say nothing of the ladies' makeup...
  • Action Girl: May Day. The Brute to Zorin and gender-flipped variation of Scary Black Man, a tall and tough Amazonian Beauty who can lift a man clean over her head and set up as a woman who could take Bond himself to the cleaners Unfortunately, she doesn't make it to the end.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: Just as their getaway vehicle is taking off, Scarpine makes a quip that causes Zorin to break out in laughter:
    Scarpine: Up and away!
  • Age Lift: One of the movie's biggest criticisms was Roger Moore's portrayal of Bond at age 57 (he was 45 when he was first cast as Bond in Live and Let Die, the oldest Bond at the time of their debut, although at least back then he had the excuse of looking younger than he was), despite the fact that, while the movie didn't pinpoint Bond's exact age, it was still obviously treating Bond as being younger than his actor was. Sean Connery himself (who was around 55 when A View To A Kill released) said "Bond should be played by an actor 35, 33 years old. I'm too old. Roger's too old, too!"
  • All There in the Manual: The script reveals that May Day is 28 years old.
  • Amazon Brigade: May Day and her group, who get killed off by Zorin. Except for May, who's so pissed off that she has a Heel–Face Turn and joins Bond to have her revenge.
  • Amazonian Beauty: May Day is a muscular woman played by Grace Jones, and considered attractive by Bond and Zorin.
  • And I'm the Queen of Sheba: When Bond reveals his identity to the San Francisco police captain, the officer scoffs with, "And I'm Dick Tracy, and you're still under arrest."
  • Ankle Drag: May Day grabs Stacey by her ankle when the former tries to climb out of Zorin's mine shaft. Stacey escapes via Giving Them the Strip.
  • Artistic Licence – Awards: At the end of the film, General Gogol arrives to present Bond with the Order of Lenin, saying that he's the first foreign recipient of the USSR's highest decoration. In Real Life, the first foreign recipients of this award were in the 1930snote , decades before the film's setting of 1985.
  • Artistic License – Economics: Roger Ebert pointed out that Zorin's evil scheme makes no sense if you have any knowledge of computer manufacturing. Zorin's plan is to corner the market on microchips by destroying Silicon Valley, which would wipe out his competitors. In reality, this would do very little to affect Zorin's market share, since microchips aren't usually manufactured in Silicon Valley. To use a real-life example: Intel Corporation has manufacturing facilities in 9 different American states, and 63 different countries, and that would be only one potential competitor. Also, given that many of the tech firms in Silicon Valley produce devices that require microchips, Zorin would also essentially be taking out a huge chunk of his own customers.
  • Artistic Licence – Engineering: Bond pursues May Day through the streets of Paris in a Renault, and even after it is torn in half by a passing car somehow is able to maintain its momentum for hundreds of yards before skidding to a stop. It was apparently fueled by a mixture of Rule of Cool and Rule of Funny.
  • Artistic Licence – Explosives: There is a shot of a few hundreds of 50kg TNT bags composing the main charge with which Zorin plans to destroy main geological lock. That is a literal 15-to-25 kiloton explosion in the making, as powerful as the infamous "Fat Man" nuke. Blast that powerful might just wipe half of silicon valley on its own and would clearly show that this is a man-made disaster.
  • Artistic Licence - Geography: Zorin's mine is portrayed on the southern end of Lake San Andreas. The movie makes it look like it takes Zorin's blimp but a few minutes to reach the Golden Gate bridge (with Bond dangling from a rope beneath it). But it'd take a blimp about half an hour to get there at the very least.
  • As You Know: Subverted. During his briefing, Q gives a demonstration of a microchip to Bond, M and Frederick Gray until M cuts him off saying they all know what microchips do.
  • Ashes to Crashes: Double Subversion. Bond tries to — and succeeds in — avoiding knocking over the urn containing Stacey Sutton's grandfather's ashes during a fight, but later in the same fight she has to smash the urn over the head of one of the Mooks.
    Bond: All the king's horses and all his men won't do much for that.
    Stacey: That's all right. It was Granddad's ashes, but he always loved a good fight.
  • Asshole Victim: The vast majority of the people killed in the mine massacre. It's possible some of them weren't in on the plot and just thought they were mining, but some of them probably knew full well what Zorin had planned.
  • Author Appeal: The plot involves horse racing, something Albert R. Broccoli was passionate about.
  • Ax-Crazy: Zorin, thanks to genetic engineering. Bonus points for him actually wielding an axe in his climactic fight with Bond.
  • Bad Boss:
    • Howe, a corrupt city official on Zorin's payroll, is killed to frame Bond and Stacey.
    • While they're completing work on the mine, Zorin orders the early detonation of some of the explosives, which will flood the mine and kill his own people. Then Zorin and his right-hand man grab a pair of submachine guns and shoot the remainder. One of Zorin's lieutenants even protests that these men are completely loyal to him, which only serves to get himself killed as well. The kicker is May Day, Zorin's own lover realizing he left her and her two female friends to die with the rest without a thought.
    • Bond's persona as James St. John-Smythe of the highly unpleasant variety to his valet.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Stacy and May Day look gorgeous throughout the entire climax, no matter what happens. Particularly glaring with May Day, who gets completely soaked, yet her hair and makeup remain immaculate.
  • Betty and Veronica: Stacey Sutton is Betty and May Day is Veronica. Stacey is the sweet, reliable Nice Girl, while May Day is the exotic Ice Queen... and also a killer. Stacey dresses more modestly (but still looks beautiful), while May Day is the Ms. Fanservice in all her glory. Stacey is blonde, May Day is brunette.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: May Day rarely speaks. She is also an absurdly strong killer.
    Bond: I see you're a woman of very few words.
    May Day: What's there to say?
  • The Big Board: A convenient tabletop simulator in the Mainstrike Mine that reveals Zorin's plan.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation:
    • The German dub confused Silicon Valley with silicone. The German word for silicone is "Silikon" while the German word for silicon is "Silizium". As you may expect these words are often mixed up in translations.
    • The Spanish dub did the same, calling Silicon Valley "Valle de Silicona". Silicon is Silicio while Silicone is Silicona.
  • Board to Death: "Anyone else want to drop out?"
  • Bodyguard Babes: May Day and her henchwomen.
  • Bond, James Bond: Parodied in the music video for the title song. "The name's Bon. Simon Le Bon."
  • Bond One-Liner: Max Zorin gets in on the action when he throws a guy out of a blimp:
    Zorin: So, does anyone else want to drop out?
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Applicable, but downplayed, as it's clear both times that Zorin wants to frame Bond whilst also maintaining plausible deniability to the authorities.
    • When Zorin decides to kill an unconscious Bond by rolling his car into a lake. Zorin does try to get it done while James is still unconscious and even stays at the lake long enough to make sure James didn't survive (James managed to survive by spotting that Zorin was watching and using the air from the tyre to stay underwater until Zorin left).
    • Later Zorin has Bond at his mercy but decides to kill him by locking him in an elevator and setting it on fire. In this case he still has the excuse that he wants to frame Bond for the murder of someone else and make it look like he failed to escape after setting the building on fire himself.
  • Book Ends:
    • For Roger Moore's entire run. His first outing had him crashing a wedding, and he does the same here.
    • The first scene of Roger Moore's first Bond movie showed him sleeping with a woman when he was interrupted by M and Miss Moneypenny, who had a new mission for him. The final scene of his latest movie shows him making love to Stacey in the shower when they are interrupted by a gadget of Q, who are looking for him... but this time, he completely ignores him and comes back to have fun with Stacey.
    • Speaking of the shower, Bond’s first encounter with Stacey in her house features him peeping inside it to see if she’s in there. In their last encounter, he has sex with her in it.
  • Bowdlerise: Some network stations playing the film jarringly omit the fates of the investor who wanted no part of the deal, Pola Ivanova's comrade, the official, May Day, Max Zorin and his minions, along with Zorin and Scarpine shooting loyal workers with submachine guns. Nine Network, for example, notably made the last omission by immediately moving to a commercial break and merely showing the aftermath following the break.
  • Bring It: When the KGB database warns him that Bond is "extremely dangerous", Zorin just gives a contemptuous smirk.
  • California Collapse: Zorin's plan to corner the microchip market involves using explosives to flood the San Andreas Fault, destroying Silicon Valley.
  • The Cameo:
    • Dolph Lundgren in an early role as Venz, one of the KGB agents accompanying General Gogol.
    • Tom Selleck strolls through the seafood market.
  • Captain Ersatz: Achilles (pronounced "a-SHEEL")note  Aubergine may be a parody of Hercule Poirot. The man seems to be a bit of a Miles Gloriosus; he dies shortly after proclaiming himself "on the case." Also Sir Godfrey is possibly a retired John Steed.
  • Cat Scare: There's a very good cat scare when Bond is creeping up the broad stairway of Stacey's house.
  • Cheaters Never Prosper: During a horse race, Zorin uses remote-controlled obstacles to try and trip up Bond's horse, then has thugs jump onto the track and attack Bond. Bond fights them off and still pulls ahead of Zorin.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Zorin, Zorin, Zorin. He murders the Obstructive Bureaucrat in his pocket to frame Bond for the crime, machine guns his own men to death and blows up and floods the mine they were in to kill anyone else who escapes his massacre, as well as two of his assistants and his own girlfriend. He's supposedly a KGB agent but after they helped set him up as a millionaire industrialist, he abandoned them too, and they hated him so much they gave Bond the Order of Lenin for foiling his scheme and killing him. If anything, the only person he has even a semblance of loyalty or genuine affection for is Dr. Mortner and possibly also his main dragon, Scarpine.
  • *Click* Hello: Bond goes from his horse to his Rolls Royce, only to find May Day in the driver's seat pointing a gun at him.
  • Clothing Damage: It happens quickly with Stacey at the climax when May Day tries to grab her and rips her disguise and part of her dress, showing her legs.
  • Coitus Uninterruptus: The final scene is of Bond and Stacey in the shower together when a robot with a remote camera on it piloted by Q homes in on them. Q makes a face and reports back to M that Bond is alive; Bond turns and sees the robot, throws a towel over it, and then turns back to Stacey as if nothing happened. Stacey doesn't even notice what just happened, and continues to kiss Bond the entire time.
  • Comforting Comforter: Bond covers Stacy Sutton after she fell asleep on her bed.
  • Complexity Addiction: First time, Bond is held at gunpoint, knocked out, and left in a car as it sinks into a lake. Second time, he's left in a lift in a burning building. The second one, at least, is somewhat justified by Zorin wanting to Make It Look Like an Accident.
    • The first was too, he just didn't bother explaining it. In both cases For the Evulz is probably in play- he wants Bond to drown / burn to death, rather than just shoot him. To be fair, by the end he's resorting to a fire axe.
  • Continuity Porn: A deleted scene involved cameo appearances of numerous Bond gadgets from previous movies, including Grant's watch of From Russia with Love.
  • Cool Airship/Dread Zeppelin: Max Zorin's airship may look like a boring old blimp, but does yours unfold from a construction shack and come with an integrated deathtrap? Max even gets to make a Bond One-Liner.
  • Cool Guns:
    • Soviet troops are seen using CZ v. 58s.
    • Zorin, alongside Scarpine, use full-size Uzis to brutally machine-gun his workers in the infamous mine massacre.
  • Corporate Conspiracy: Microchip tycoon Max Zorin, owner of Zorin Industries and secretly the only survivor of a Nazi Super Breeding Program, wants to destroy Silicon Valley with a massive man-made earthquake, causing the death of millions just so he can corner the microchip market.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Max Zorin. How do you effectively corner the microchip market? Destroy Silicon Valley with a massive man-made earthquake. And if much of the West Coast has to go with it? So be it.
  • Covers Always Lie: The poster on top of the page. All of it.
    • Grace Jones is nowhere as tall as Roger Moore as the poster wants you to believe.
    • Stacey is depicted in a pink dress she's never seen wearing at any point of the film; in the climax she's wearing white.
    • The poster depicts a still from the climax, where Bond takes on Zorin on the Golden Gate Bridge with his pistol. Except Bond in the film is in a stolen mine worker's outfit instead of his iconic tux, and is unarmed for most of the final battle.
    • Zorin's airship seems to be airborne on the poster; it's stuck to one of the Golden Gate Bridge's arches in the climatic showdown.
  • Covert Pervert: Q, and the way his spy robot extends its neck give this vibe. The fact that he smiles when he sees Bond and Stacey in the shower doesn't help (although obviously the smile is because he is happy to discover that Bond is alive).
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Pola Ivanova's partner is shoved into a water turbine head first.
  • Curse Cut Short: Zorin demands to know why Stacy won't accept his bribes. She says, "You can take your offer and shove it up your-" James Bond tells her not to bother talking to Zorin because he's a psychopath.
  • Cute, but Cacophonic: Stacy Sutton is gorgeous, but her shrill screams are not very pleasant.
  • Cut Phone Lines: Zorin's mooks cut Stacy Sutton's phone line before invading her house and attacking her. After James Bond fends them off, he repairs the line.
  • Damsel in Distress: Stacey is kidnapped by Zorin at the end and must be rescued by Bond.
  • Danger Takes a Backseat: May Day murders Tibbett and Chuck Lee this way (separate attacks), resulting in Bond not getting the support/reinforcements he expected.
  • Deadpan Snarker: The screams of Stacey Sutton seem to make fans forget that she gets to have those moments with Bond himself.
    Bond: Hello. I thought you might like to join the party. By the way, the name is James St. John Smythe. I'm English.
    Stacey: I never would have guessed.
  • Death Glare: May Day gives an effective one just before she dies in her Heroic Sacrifice aimed at Zorin.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: Subverted. May Day helps Bond not because she had sex with him, but because Zorin betrayed her and killed her friends. But Bond already has Stacey at this point in the plot, so the script makes May Day sacrifice her life to ruin Zorin's plans.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen:
    • Downplayed with Stacey Sutton. In the first half of the movie, she appears to be cold and cynical when Bond flirts with her at Zorin's Mansion, but in the second half of the movie, after discovering that Bond is an ally, she becomes one of the most sympathetic Bond girls in the franchise, always smiling.
    • Averted with May Day. She remains cold, reserved and cruel from start to finish, and even the night of love with Bond has no influence on her. It's Zorin's betrayal that makes her turn to Bond's side in the end.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Subverted. At the climax, May Day tries to grab Stacey to stop her from running away, giving the impression that there will be a fight between them. Instead, May Day only manages to rip off a piece of clothing from Stacey, who then manages to escape. May Day then fights Bond, but the flood caused by Zorin's betrayal brings them together.
  • Designer Babies: Max Zorin was apparently one of these, it has been noted that such experiment has resulted in amazingly bright children, who are also somewhat insane.
  • Deus Ax Machina: During the final fight at the top of the Golden Gate Bridge, Max Zorin famously grabs a nearby fire axe and attacks the heroes in a last attempt to kill Bond and Stacey. Bond manages to get hold of it and use it against Zorin and his blimp.
  • Devilish Hair Horns: One of May Day's many, many styles is a red outfit and hairdo shaped like devil horns. Subtle.
  • Diabolical Mastermind: Max Zorin is a billionaire industrialist, as well as a rogue KGB agent and the product of Nazi genetic engineering. He's hit the Bond trifecta!
  • Diegetic Soundtrack Usage: The theme song is played by the band at the wedding Bond accidentally crashes.
  • Disney Villain Death: Max Zorin falls off the Golden Gate Bridge after trying to hack Bond to death with a fire axe.
  • The Dragon: May Day is this for Zorin throughout the film, until he betrays her at the climax.
  • Dragon Their Feet: Dr. Mortner comes to and tries to kill Bond and Stacey after Zorin falls to his death.
  • Dying Smirk:
    • Dr. Carl Mortner/Hans Glaub, an old Nazi scientist, is clearly seen grinning as he and Scarpine fumble over the lit roll of dynamite that seals their fate.
    • While rolling out of Zorin's mine on the bomb that's about to explode, May Day's laughing, knowing that she's helping screw over Zorin hard after what he pulled. Though it fades right before the bomb goes off, as she sees Zorin's blimp and shoots him one last Death Glare.
    • Max Zorin lets out a small burst of psychotic laughter after realizing he's gonna fall after his confrontation with Bond. Then he does a brief Oh, Crap! face as he falls to his watery death.
  • EMP: The MacGuffin for the first part of the movie is a computer chip that can withstand EMP, built by Zorin Industries — Bond is investigating how one of these chips ended up in the Soviet Union.
  • Effortless Amazonian Lift: When Zorin tells General Gogol he's going to go ahead with his Evil Plan instead of working for the Soviets, a KGB mook pulls a gun and is promptly lifted up in the air by May Day.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect:
    • Bond's first port of call is Paris, so naturally the Eiffel Tower is put to great effect.
    • Since the last third takes place in the San Francisco/Silicon Valley area, it's perhaps inevitable that the film climaxes over the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Elevator Escape: Bond and Stacey have to do this after Zorin traps them inside and sets the whole place on fire.
  • Elevator Failure: Bond and Stacey stuck in one of these — made more dangerous as Zorin has just firebombed the thing.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • When Zorin prepares to flood the fault line, knowing full well he will be leaving his lackeys to die, one of his henchmen blasts him for this, citing the men's loyalty to him. Unfortunately for him, he becomes a victim as well.
    • May Day is devastated at the death of her friends and the realization that Zorin left her to die. This is what makes her turn on him.
  • Evil Counterpart: Bond and Max Zorin. Both have a startling line/connection between sex and violence and are highly skilled. The key difference? While Bond remains loyal to MI-6 and to Stacey (a person he has only known for a few days and that he would not need to save in the face of the greater urgency to save the world), Zorin is a rogue KGB agent who even goes so far to betray his lover May Day and kill his own mooks out of pure, bat-shit sadism.
  • Evil Laugh: May Day lets out a fabulous cackle as she and Zorin escape by boat after she's killed Aubergine.
  • Evil Plan: Max Zorin's ultimate plan is to detonate explosives along the Hayward and San Andreas Faults, causing them to flood. The other major bomb was set to destroy a "geological lock" that's in place to prevent the two faults from moving, causing a double earthquake that would destroy Silicon Valley, leaving his microchip company with a monopoly.
  • Explosive Stupidity: Zorin has fallen to his death from the Golden Gate Bridge after a climactic fight with Bond. Dr. Mortner sees this, and fires his gun at Bond until it runs out of ammunition. Not to be stopped by that, he goes to the weapons stash...and pulls out a roll of dynamite. Which he then lights, and pauses halfway out of the blimp to pose maniacally for several seconds, giving Stacey enough time to warn Bond about it. Unsurprisingly, he gets blown to bits for his troubles. Then again, the pause isn't entirely unjustified; he has to throw the dynamite at the right time to be close enough to Bond when it explodes. Throw it too soon, and it goes right past him, to explode harmlessly in the water or air (or worse, next to a car on the road below).
  • Facial Recognition Software: Suspecting Bond isn't the Upper-Class Twit he's pretending to be, Zorin invites Bond to his office for a private discussion, where a hidden camera is linked to a KGB database. Zorin even gets Bond to look to the side (at a nearby painting) so the camera can get a profile shot of his face.
  • Failed a Spot Check: The infamous scene where Stacey doesn't notice a blimp approaching her, even when Bond yells at her to look out. The original script states that the airship shouldn't make any noise at this point, explaining why Stacey doesn't listen, but that is definitely not the case in the final version of the film.
  • Fake Shemp:
    • According to David Yip, Grace Jones wasn't present for the scene where May Day kills Chuck Lee in the car. Instead, a stand-in filled her role.
    • That's clearly not Walter Gotell in the first shot when Pola Ivanova meets up with General Gogol in the car.
  • Fakin' MacGuffin: Bond swaps a tape recording Pola Ivanova made of Zorin's plans with a tape of Japanese music.
  • Fan Disservice: The androgynous features of May Day can be off-putting to some male viewers. But there are also other viewers who may love her for this.
  • Fanservice: The four Bond Girls in the film have several scenes wearing seductive outfits or even naked.
  • Fatal Family Photo: A posthumous version when Bond opens the locket worn by his dead predecessor. Of course the wife and child shown could just be part of the man's cover identity, but this trope is implied.
  • Fatal Flaw: Max Zorin and his Ax-Crazy sociopathic behavior. Part of this is because he is the end result of a Nazi eugenics project in which pregnant women were injected with massive quantities of steroids in an attempt to create "super-children" for the Nazis. While most of these pregnancies failed, the few babies that survived became extremely intelligent later in life — but also totally insane psychopaths, partly because of the drugs administered to create these "super-children". And by the end, whatever remaining sanity he had has been completely whittled to the point of literally wielding an axe, trying to hack Bond to death during the climatic final battle at the top of the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Max Zorin. He gives a knowing wink to May Day when she's killed someone. Completely coldly guns down her associates later. Laughs when he realizes he's about to die. Is played by Christopher Walken, with all the hamminess it brings.
  • Fetish: Unlike most Bond villains, Zorin seems quite turned on at the thought of May Day sleeping with 007. Given her angry reaction to Zorin besting her in a fight and her reaction to Bond's initial attempt at lovemaking, it may be more that Zorin enjoys manipulating her into a position he likes but that she does not.
  • Fire Hose Cannon: Bond knocks the police chief over by opening a valve on the fire engine, blasting him with a high-pressure jet of water; allowing him and Stacy to escape in the confusion.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: Pola Ivanova does not seem to show any sadness for the partner who was murdered by Zorin.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Bond switches the cassette tapes while in the bathhouse with Pola, you can clearly see Roger Moore wearing flesh-tone briefs when he hops back into the tub.
  • Furo Scene: James Bond and KGB agent Pola Ivanova share a bath together at an Asian bathhouse in San Francisco.
  • Gay Paree: There's a scene in the Eiffel Tower, for cripes sake.
  • Girl of the Week: Stacey Sutton, the main Bond Girl of this movie.
  • Giving Them the Strip: Stacey sheds her coveralls to escape from May Day while climbing out of Zorin's mine shaft.
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: Bond and Stacey at the end of the film.
  • Goggles Do Something Unusual: Bond has glasses that allow him to see through polarized glass.
  • Gone Horribly Right: The Nazis used cacogenics to create the ideal Super-Soldier. The surviving babies became talented as adults — but also totally insane beneath that charm. Max Zorin mowing down his minions while cackling like The Joker or creating an artificial earthquake to corner the microchip market without regards for the collateral damage are two horrific examples of how the steroids have permanently damaged his mind.
  • Good Versus Good: James Bond vs Pola Ivanova. They are both secret agents with the same goal (stopping Zorin). The only reason they find themselves at odds is because they happen to work for enemy countries.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The car wash brushes block the view of the Rolls Royce just as May Day gets up from the back seat and strangles Tibbett.
  • Go Seduce My Arch Nemesis: Played with. To escape detection while investigating Zorin's mansion, Bond jumps into May Day's bed and pretends he was waiting for her. Zorin gives her the nod, and she strips and has sex with Bond. Zorin doesn't know Bond is his nemesis yet (although he finds him suspicious), and it's implied he simply did it because he enjoys forcing May Day to do things against her will.
  • Grand Finale: This film serves as the final entry in the Roger Moore-era Bond series.
  • Grenade Hot Potato: Mortner and Scarpine fumble the lit dynamite between them after Mortner loses control of it in the blimp.
  • Groin Attack: Bond smacks his crotch against a building's antenna. He manages to hold on - and it doesn't stop him from having Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex with Stacy at the end of the film. It's even funnier when you realize that Roger Moore spent most of his Bond tenure either dealing out crotch shots or narrowly avoiding them.
  • Halfway Plot Switch: The film starts out with an investigation of Max Zorin and his sale of EMP resistant microchips to Soviet Russia. James Bond investigates by attending a horse sale, where he finds out that Zorin is also trading in illegal augmentations. Neither of these plot points make much of a difference in the end because right after Bond escapes, the real plan to destroy Silicon Valley is introduced and a relatively minor clue (a check made out to a woman from San Francisco) brings Bond to California.
  • Head-Tiltingly Kinky: Bond and May Day's sex scene.
  • Heel–Face Turn: May Day was Max Zorin's main henchwoman, but she eventually foils his plans to flood Silicon Valley after he kills her own two henchwomen as part of his plan and reveals that he always thought of another guy, Scarpine, as his true right-hand man.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: After Zorin double-crosses his men, including May Day (his Dragon and lover) she tries to help Bond move the detonator he intended to use to set off the explosives that would destroy Silicon Valley out of the mine; when it gets stuck, May-Day leaps onto it and manually moves it out of the mine, dying when it explodes. Her last words to Bond: "Get Zorin for me!"
  • Hero of Another Story: The Action Prologue involves Bond retrieving one of Zorin's computer chips from the body of another Double-0 who was killed after stealing it from the Soviets. Bond's mission after that is to find out how the chip ended up behind the Iron Curtain in the first place.
  • Hey, Wait!: James Bond and Stacey Sutton are using a stolen truck to enter Zorin's mine, when they're pulled up by a security guard. Not because there's a beautiful woman in the cab with Bond, but because he's not wearing a hard hat as required.
  • High-Heel–Face Turn: May Day. It's worth noting that it wasn't Bond's charms that won her over. He was just her posthumous instrument of revenge against Zorin.
  • History Repeats: CIA Agent Lee is killed the same way Sir Tibbett is, strangled by May Day from the back seat of the car they're driving.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Zorin himself; obviously his disloyalty towards his own girlfriend comes at a cost, as she was all too eager to help Bond foil his plans when he left her to die along with everyone else in the mine.
    • Really, Dr. Mortner, what did you think was going to happen when you tried to blow up Bond with dynamite in a disabled blimp?
  • Hoist Hero over Head: May Day hoists Gogol's bodyguard Venz over her head and throws him down the stairs of the grandstand at the racetrack.
  • Honey Trap: Downplayed. At one point in the movie, Bond, still in disguise and investigating Zorin's mansion, fails to return to his room before the villain, who suspects him. Bond then decides to pretend he has been in May Day's room all this time waiting for her, and invites her to spend the night with him. May Day is initially surprised and she and Zorin realize Bond's plan, but she, with Zorin's approval, decides to spend the night with Bond anyway to fool him.
  • Idiot Ball: That one investor who didn't want to be involved in Zorin's criminal scheme. Seriously, you know the whole plan and you think he's going to let you live knowing about an activity you think is wrong?
    • The investor didn't know the whole plan and Zorin wasn't proposing any criminal scheme. The investor was there for exactly that reason- to invest. Zorin wanted to out-compete Silicon Valley and didn't let slip that he was planning to do so by destroying it utterly (he nearly did, but he didn't); all he was saying at that meeting was that he wanted them to invest in his company so he can do that. The problem was that he wanted them to invest an obscene amount of money ($100 million each); the fact that they thought Silicon Valley would still be there only makes the financial risk sound worse. The investor had no idea he was dealing with a murderous psychopath and acted accordingly. Alternatively, it can be assumed that Zorin expected- perhaps even wanted or engineered- the meeting to be designed so that at least one person would choose to back out and planned from the start to make an example of them.
    • Bond for admitting that the gun used in Howe's murder was his and thinking he'd just have it back. His cover identity was James Stock; a reporter for the London Financial Times. A financial reporter in the USA would have absolutely no reason to carry a gun.
  • Implausible Boarding Skills: Bond uses the front ski from his wrecked snowmobile as an improvised snowboard to escape from the Russian ski troops pursuing him.
  • In Name Only: Besides the Paris setting, the short story has nothing to do with the movie.
  • Indy Ploy: Zorin claims to be one: "Intuitive improvisation is the secret of genius." Of course, given that he has two jerry cans full of gasoline with him at the time, Zorin is probably actually more of a Xanatos Speed Chess kind of guy.
  • Instant Convertible: This is one of the many mishaps that happen to Bond's Renault.
  • Interrupted Bath: Bond and Stacey are making love in the shower at the end of the movie when they are interrupted by one of Q's inventions, that was looking for him. Bond quickly dumps the device and kisses Stacey again. Stacey continues to kiss Bond throughout this event and doesn't even realize what happened.
  • I'll Take That as a Compliment: Zorin's smugness always disappears whenever someone reminds him of his Designer Babies nature. However when Bond gives the page quote, he's apparently enough of a "Well Done, Son" Guy to agree with it.
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: Stacey Sutton is good-natured and owns a cat named, appropriately enough, Pussy.
  • Kingpin in His Gym: We are treated to a scene of Zorin sparring with May Day.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Max Zorin, the psychotic Corrupt Corporate Executive who, in one scene, sets off a bomb inside a mine with hundreds of his own workers still inside, and then shoots down those trying to escape all while laughing his head off. The Lighter and Softer Moore era was over, indeed.
  • Lack of Empathy: Max Zorin is one of the worst examples of this in the franchise, as he's willing to corner the microchip market by triggering an earthquake in the San Francisco Bay Area without regards to the collateral damage he's about to create, given that he's an Ax-Crazy brute to begin with. He's also a Bad Boss, gleefully mowing down his henchmen and casually trying to kill May Day all without a shred of remorse.
  • Lady in Red: May Day is introduced in the film wearing a red dress.
  • Large Ham:
    • Christopher Walken as a Bond villain. Need we say more? The part was originally offered to David Bowie. It's really not too difficult to figure this tidbit out without even knowing about it, just by watching how Walken acts.
    • Grace Jones as May Day. She even has an evil laugh.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: "The bubbles are tickling my... Tchaikovsky!"
  • Laughing Mad: Zorin laughs preposterously before falling to his death from the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: According to Word of God, Tibbet was a retired John Steed. invoked
  • Lemming Cops: The cops in the San Francisco Police Department making the unwise decision to try to chase Bond through downtown when he's driving a stolen fire engine. The commanding officer makes the foolish mistake of stopping where his car gets crushed by the counterweight when the bridge is lowered.
  • The Load: Stacey Sutton and how! She is constantly getting into danger due to her own stupidity (at one point failing to notice Christopher Walken on a GIANT BLIMP coming up behind her), and Bond always ends up rescuing her. She did intentionally distract Zorin on the blimp, though, and takes Scarpine right out of nowhere.
  • Love Redeems: Averted. May Day has sex with Bond halfway through the movie, but that moment is never commented on for the rest of the plot, and May Day only helps Bond defeat Zorin at the climax because Zorin betrayed her and tried to kill her.
  • Mad Scientist: Dr Mortner.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: Zorin, playing a bit of Xanatos Speed Chess, takes advantage of a break-in by Bond and Stacey into City Hall. Zorin kills her ex-boss and forces the pair into an elevator before setting the building on fire, making it look like they were responsible but were killed by the flames trying to escape.
  • The Name Is Bond, James Bond: Turned into a Running Gag, as Bond uses a variety of fake names.
    • Also played with in the Duran Duran video for the theme; toward the end of the video, the band's lead singer identifies himself as "Bon. Simon LeBon."
  • Mean Boss: "St. John Smythe" to his "valet" Tibbet. When Bond and Tibbet need to sneak off for a private discussion, they leave a tape recording of Smythe complaining constantly about Tibbet's work.
  • Milkman Conspiracy: Zorin Industries is engaged in a horse race-fixing scheme where steroids are secretly administered to horses via microchip to win races, as well as a scheme to flood Silicon Valley and dominate the microchip industry.
  • Minor Crime Reveals Major Plot: A shady system of using steroids to win horse races —> destroying Silicon Valley.
    • In-Universe too; as Gogol reprimands Zorin for his horse fixing, which could draw attention to the KGB's involvement in the theft of silicon chips.
  • Mirthless Laughter: May Day laughs harshly when she leaves the mine with the bomb, but when she locks eyes with Max, it becomes pure snarl.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: May Day stays loyal to Max until he decides he doesn't need her any more and leaves her to die with the rest of his minions who have outlived their usefulness. After that, she's out for revenge.
  • Molotov Cocktail: Zorin sets fire to the San Francisco City Hall by using molotov cocktails everywhere.
  • Monumental Battle: Bond fight a major minion or two at the Eiffel Tower. The final confrontation takes place over the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Monumental Damage: A rare instance in the series, as Zorin attempts to murder Bond and Stacy by setting fire to San Francisco City Hall.
  • Mr. Smith: Bond plays with this trope, introducing himself with the alias of St. John Smythe, although not before the person checking his invitation misreads it as Smith.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Grace Jones and Tanya Roberts have several scenes wearing revealing dresses, short skirts or naked (although only their backs are shown).
  • Mugged for Disguise: Bond does this to one of Zorin's mooks so Stacey can have his coveralls and hardhat.
  • Murderer P.O.V.: At least two shots of Stacy's house make it clear that the bad guys are lurking in the bushes, watching her.
  • Nazi Grandpa: Dr. Mortner. Ironically, Max Zorin, the (now-grown-up) Aryan test-tube baby he raised, is no racist (but still very, very evil). It's a bit more complicated as Doctor Mortner was experimenting with what he considered inferior bloodlines to make them super-soldiers. In the script, Zorin's Amazon Brigade is composed of his other experiments.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The trailer ends with the narrator citing the names of the main cast, showing scenes with their respective characters at the climax in the airship. However, May Day redeems herself and dies before this final confrontation, and her scene in the airship shown in the trailer actually takes place midway through the film.
  • Nice Girl: Screams aside, Stacey Sutton is one of the most friendly and lovable women in the series.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Bond snoops around Zorin's pumping station and inadvertedly blows a KGB operation to blow it up, leading to one of their men being gruesomly killed. To make things worse, they could have prematurely prevented Project Main Strike.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon: Subverted by Bond and Zorin, who both hook up with May Day. In fact, she's the one who seems a bit reluctant of them.
  • Noodle Incident:
    Pola Ivanova: James, that night in London when I was with the Bolshoi... Now, that was a performance.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent:
    • Christopher Walken plays Zorin with his usual accent, even though he's supposed to be the product of Nazi "experimentation". In the film, it's handwaved by saying he speaks several languages "with no accent".
    • The cops in San Francisco have East Coast accents.
  • Not My Driver: Bond is being chased on horseback through the woods by Zorin and his mooks, but then sees his car being driven along a nearby road. As the chauffeur is a fellow British agent, Bond rides desperately towards it, only to find the chauffeur has been murdered by May Day, who's now driving the car.
  • Now You Tell Me: When mooks attempt to ambush Stacey Sutton at her home, Bond grabs her shotgun and starts to gun them down, only for them to get right up afterwards.
    Bond: What is this loaded with?
    Stacey: Rock salt.
    Bond: Now she tells me.
  • Obvious Stunt Double: A sharp eye will easily make out a good number of Roger Moore's stunt doubles during the action sequences, a further indication that Moore had clearly outgrown the part. It is painfully obvious in the car chase in Paris and at the climax on the Golden Gate bridge.
    • Also for Zorin. In the final fight, you can easily tell when it's not Christopher Walken because the stunt double is wearing pale grey Reeboks rather than the light gray loafers. It's distractingly glaring during the moment Stacey grabs Zorin's pants leg.
  • Our Lawyers Advised This Trope: The unusual "Zorin is not a real company" blurb at the beginning — it seems there's at least two Real Life companies named Zoran, one of which is actually a chip maker.
  • Police Are Useless:
    • The police captain, who while trying to arrest Bond, doesn't seem to acknowledge his acquaintance with CIA Agent Chuck Lee (who was found dead hours earlier), and tries to cuff him anyway.
    • The police try to follow Bond over the bridge instead of stopping and terminating the pursuit. The Captain carelessly parks his car where it gets crushed. Those lighted barriers are there for a reason. The laugh his men have at his expense was well deserved.
  • Pre-emptive Declaration: Zorin informs a corrupt official on his payroll how he intends to fake Bond and Sutton's deaths. They murdered him and started a fire to destroy the evidence, only to die after being trapped in the elevator.
    Howe: But that means... I would have to be...
    Zorin: Dead! [shoots him in heart]
  • Preppy Name: James Bond briefly takes the name "James St. John Smythe" (pronounced Sinjin-Smythe) while undercover as an Upper-Class Twit.
  • Priceless Ming Vase: Played with. Bond and Stacey go through the familiar "don't-break-the-vase" fight scene, but after she ultimately uses it to knock out a Mook, she reveals it actually contains her grandfather's ashes.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Max Zorin is a mentally unhinged madman who is the end result of a Nazi eugenics program — while the surviving babies were intelligent, they grew up to become psychopathic thanks to the steroids that the Nazis used. General Gogol criticizing Zorin over (seemingly) killing Bond almost plays like a parent scolding a young child.
  • Put the "Laughter" in "Slaughter": Zorin, while taking an Uzi to scads of his own men.
  • Ramp Jump: Bond driving across the Third Street drawbridge in the "opening bridge" variety. In a fire truck.
  • Random Events Plot: This is the quintessential cheesy Bond film, perhaps even more so than Moonraker. It's as if the production team had to make a Bond film and were given a list of random elements that had to be arranged into one. Blimps! Christopher Walken as a Nazi, baby! Grace Jones as a Bond girl! A KGB subplot for some reason! Horses!
  • Ready for Lovemaking: After snooping around Zorin's estate, Bond is unable to get back to his bedroom before they check if he's there (blowing his cover as just another rich idiot guest). So, he uses this ploy to explain his absence: when May Day returns to her room she finds Bond naked in her bed. She ends up going along with it in order to not blow her cover.
  • Real Men Cook: James Bond prepares a fairly presentable quiche for Stacy Sutton in order to gain her trust.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: Zorin, while delivering the page quote, taps his temple with a loaded pistol.
  • Recycled Plot: Zorin's plan is a dressed-up retread of Goldfinger's.
  • Redemption Equals Death: This is the ultimate fate of May Day. After her boss and lover Max Zorin leaves her behind to die in the mine where he's setting off explosives in order to create a massive earthquake that would lead to the flooding of Silicon Valley. After she realizes this she decides to help Bond stop him. When they try to get the bomb out, May Day is forced to go with it in order to transport it to a place where it wouldn't cause the damage. Being caught in the explosion in the process.
  • Red Herring: Max Zorin's genetically modified racehorses have nothing to do with the plot and serve only as an excuse to get Bond involved in Zorin's business.
  • Renegade Russian: Not a literal example of this trope, but in the same spirit — Zorin is a KGB agent who ditches his employers to carry out his mad scheme for world domination of the silicon chip industry.
  • Resignations Not Accepted: General Gogol tells Zorin that no one leaves the KGB alive. Zorin is not impressed.
  • The Rich Want to Be Richer: Zorin's Evil Plan is very similar to Goldfinger's scheme — but with more collateral damage involved. He wants to corner the microchip market by triggering a megaquake in the Bay Area, which would kill millions.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: The writers had noted the explosion in available computer technology and the public's fascination / concern with all things hi-tech so decided that their story should centre around the planned destruction of America's Silicon Valley.
  • Scary Black Man: May Day is a female example of this trope. When she's not throwing scary Death Glares, she kills people ruthlessly.
  • Scenery Porn: San Francisco is shown in all its glory (as is Paris to a lesser extent). The end credits are basically a series of shots of the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Stacey tries to warn Howe about Zorin pumping seawater into his wells. He fires her rather than risk losing Zorin's investments.
  • See-Thru Specs: Bond has a pair of glasses with adjustable polarization, which allow him to see through one-way mirrors.
  • Sex–Face Turn: Subverted. Bond does sleep with Zorin's main henchwoman (and lover) May Day, but when she eventually turns against her boss, it's because Zorin knowingly left her to her death, not because she's smitten with Bond's manly ways. In fact, May Day could be said to be manlier than Bond himself.
  • Sex Signals Death: May Day has sex with Bond in the middle of the film, and after her Heel–Face Turn, she pulls a Heroic Sacrifice to take Max Zorin down and avenge the deaths of her workmates, whom he killed when they weren't useful anymore. Her death also conveniently allows Bond to stay only with Stacey at the end of the film, while other movies in the franchise end with more than one Bond Girl alive, forcing Bond to choose one of them.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Subverted. Stacey's shotgun ammo is rock salt, so that it stuns, not kills.
  • Shout-Out: At the Ascot derby, Moneypenny yells "Move your arse!" at her losing horse.
  • Shower of Love: Between Bond and Stacey at the end.
  • Skeleton Key Card: Parodied. Bond pulls out a credit card to unlock a window, but after flipping it over we see that it's an electronic lockpick from The Sharper Image.
  • The Sociopath: Max Zorin is one of the worst examples of this, as he's willing to cause an earthquake to corner the microchip market without regards for the collateral damage. Part of this is because he's the end result of a Nazi eugenics project, in which pregnant women were overdosed with steroids in an attempt to create "super-children" for the Nazis. The few babies that survived became totally insane psychopaths.
  • Soft Water: Averted twice. The first is when one of the executives gets Thrown from the Zeppelin, and second is the scene where Max Zorin falls off the Golden Gate Bridge. Though that's the last the audience sees of him (ie. no body), it's pretty clear he is killed. Naturally, since many San Franciscans will tell you that simply falling from the street level is fatal (the body is immediately pulverized and the victim — if still alive somehow — drowns in their own blood); Max fell from the very top of one of the towers. Judging from the angle his body hit the water, it's also likely that he'd have ended up with a broken collarbone and neck regardless of how far he fell, which would also be lethal.
  • Soviet Superscience: Averted. General Gogol brings a medal to the Universal Exports office for Bond in recognition for his efforts in saving Silicone Valley. M wonders why, as he thinks that the destruction of Silicon Valley would be a cause for celebration in the Soviet Union. Gogol explains that the KGB has been stealing technologies from companies there for years.
  • Spy Cam: One of Bond's gadgets is a ring containing a miniature camera. Bond uses the device at Zorin's party to covertly take photographs of each of his guests.
  • Statuesque Stunner: May Day, of course. Grace Jones herself was one at the time.
  • Stock Scream:
    • The poor mook Thrown from the Zeppelin right before he hits the water. This scream is frequently heard in all of the Moore-era Bond films at one point or another.
    • Another butchered Wilhelm Scream can be heard when Zorin throws the KGB mook into the propeller of his oil pumping station near the midway point of the film.
  • Sue Donym: James Bond at one point poses as a Financial Times reporter named "James Stock".
  • Surprise Slide Staircase: Max Zorin does this to a stockholder who declines to take part in his plan to destroy Silicon Valley. It's worth mentioning that this staircase leads to an open trapdoor in the floor of an airship's cabin.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Anya Amasova (played by Barbara Bach) from The Spy Who Loved Me was originally to be in the film, but was replaced by Pola Ivanova (played by Fiona Fullerton.)
  • Taking You with Me: Dr. Mortner attempts this with Bond after Zorin's death, brandishing a roll of lit dynamite atop the bridge. It doesn't work, and instead he ends up taking Scarpine with him.
  • Temporary Substitute: Felix Leiter, who hadn't been seen since Live and Let Die, was supposed to appear until the filmmakers decided to take advantage of San Francisco's Chinatown setting by adding Chuck Lee.
  • Theme Tune: With guitar riffs! Notably, the only Bond theme tune to hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
  • Thrown from the Zeppelin: Trope namer, though not the most famous example. The meeting is taking place on board Max Zorin's blimp, and one of the investors is literally thrown out: as he climbs down the stairs to the lower level of the cabin, a trapdoor opens at the bottom — revealing that the blimp is airborne — and May Day activates a Surprise Slide Staircase.
  • Tim Taylor Technology: After Zorin's dirigible gets snagged on the Golden Gate Bridge, he yells for "More! More power!" It doesn't break them free. "More! Do it!" When they remain stuck in place, he yells, "Full throttle!"
  • Title Drop: An impossibly awkward one.
    May Day: [overlooking San Francisco bay from the blimp] Wow. What a view!
    Zorin: To a kill!
  • Token Romance: Roger Moore is 22 years older than the film's lead actress Tanya Roberts. And just like in For Your Eyes Only (where Moore was 30 years older than the lead actress, Carole Bouquet), the hero and the lead Bond Girl, Stacey, have almost no romantic moments before having sex in their final scene, except for a brief flirt that comes between them when they dine at her house. Their relationship seems more like father and daughter, and it doesn't help that in their first scene at Zorin's mansion, Stacey rejects all of his brazen flirtations, looking like she thinks he's a creepy old man.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Mr. Howe, who simply doesn't appreciate the kind of monster he's covering for until Zorin decides he has outlived his usefulness.
  • Toplessness from the Back: May Day when she takes off her robe and throws it on the floor, and then lies in bed to make love with Bond.
  • Trapped in a Sinking Car: Bond had to escape one of these. He is able to open the car door once the cabin is flooded with water. Bond then realizes that he cannot surface immediately because the baddies are waiting ashore, so he opens the wheel valve and inhales the out-rushing air.
  • The Trickster: Bond survives only by playing with Zorin's head.
  • Turbine Blender: Max Zorin throws a Russian spy into an underwater turbine headfirst at Zorin's power plant.
  • Two-Person Pool Party: Bond and Pola have a romantic interlude in a hot tub.
  • Unconventional Vehicle Chase:
    • As Bond follows May Day from the ground as she parachutes down from the Eiffel Tower, the subcompact he commandeers is smashed, crashed, and ultimately chopped in half—yet it remains drivable to the end.
    • About to be arrested by police in San Francisco, Bond steals a firetruck to escape. At one point he takes out the ladder which wrecks a lot of the environment, including taking the top off a pickup truck with a sleeping couple inside.
  • Undying Loyalty: Mortner is the only person Zorin has even the slightest bit of respect before; Mortner is Zorin's Parental Substitute, and they both genuinely love each other.
  • Unnecessary Combat Roll: James Bond pulls this off before he blasts a few fellows away with a shotgun. It's loaded with rock salt, though.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: The mine foreman just looks confused at the sight of a female truck driver in heels (despite Bond being pulled up earlier for not wearing a hard hat - proper footwear should also be a safety requirement). No-one pays attention to her form-fitting jumpsuit after they change outfits either.
  • Upper-Class Equestrian: Zorin, a wealthy Corrupt Corporate Executive, owns a horse ranch where he routinely breeds and sells quarter horses. It is at this ranch that Bond notices a private deal between Zorin and Bond Girl Stacey Sutton.
  • Upper-Class Twit: Bond poses as one to infiltrate Zorin's estate, with the hilariously English pseudonym "James St. John Smythe". Unfortunately it turns out to be a Paper-Thin Disguise as Zorin has access to the KGB database.
  • Victoria's Secret Compartment: Pola Ivanova smuggles away an incriminating tape down the front of her robe.
  • Villain Ball: Zorin's plan could have succeeded had he chose to leave Bond and Sutton in the tunnels, which he is planning to flood anyway, instead of sending May Day and her henchwomen after them. Without May Day's betrayal induced Heel–Face Turn, Bond and Sutton could never have disarmed Zorin's bomb.
  • Villainous Breakdown: While Max Zorin was already an insane psychopath to begin with, he slowly loses his grip on sanity as the film progresses. By the end of the movie, he's batshit Axe-Crazy to the point of wildly swinging a fire ax against Bond on top of the Golden Gate Bridge in the final fight after gleefully killing his henchmen left and right. It goes to the point that, when he's dangling from the bridge, he laughs just before falling to his death, as if that's his reaction to realizing that he's losing his grip and is about to fall.
  • Watch the Paint Job: A police captain bawls out some hapless officers for having wrecked their squad cars during a chase, and says the cost of the cruisers will come out of their salary, unaware that behind him his own cruiser is being crushed by the counterweight of a drawbridge.
  • We Have Reserves: After gunning down his own men, Zorin simply looks at his watch and says "Good. Right on schedule."
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Pola Ivanova completely disappears from the story after being tricked by Bond.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: After May Day bitterly pains over her henchmen being killed (moaning, "Jenny!" when Jenny Flex's corpse floats by), Bond takes the time to look around at the cost in human life and states that Zorin betrayed a lot of people, one of the few times that Bond actually pauses to mourn the deaths of henchmen. Then again, most of the men who were killed weren't even henchmen, but just working for the henchmen who were working for Zorin. (All of May Day's girls were definitely henchwomen.)
  • Woman Scorned: May Day.
    May Day: And I thought that creep loved me!
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: A meta-example. A few critics at the time pointed out that May Day's Heel–Face Turn conveniently allowed Bond to avoid having to fight and kill a woman, even one that physically outclassed him (and it also saves him from the embarrassing situation of ending the film with two Bond Girls alive and having to choose between one of them, as happened in other films).
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Unlike many villains, Max and May Day actually bother to see if James drowns after being dumped in the lake. Fortunately, Bond opened a tyre and used it to breathe and create the illusion that he's drowned, causing M & M to leave the scene. At least they tried.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Jenny Flex and almost everyone else in the mine, under Zorin's orders. May Day is the only survivor - and boy, is she angry at Zorin.
  • You're Insane!: Bond to Zorin, calling him a "psychopath." Zorin harshly chuckles.
  • Younger Than They Look: According to the script, May Day is 28 years old. Grace Jones was 37 years old and this is apparent in the film.


A View to A Kill (1985)

James Bond and Max Zorin battle it out on top of the Golden Gate Bridge.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (9 votes)

Example of:

Main / MonumentalBattle

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