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YMMV / Diamonds Are Forever

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The film:

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Does Plenty O'Toole go to Tiffany's house to jealously confront her about sleeping with Bond or to warn her about how (from Plenty's perspective) Bond is friends with some dangerous people?
  • Awesome Music: Check it out over here.
  • Badass Decay:
    • Tiffany's general competence falls off a cliff once she teams up with Bond, going from tough as nails, no-bullshit crook in her first scene to Damsel Scrappy by the climax of the film.
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    • Bambi & Thumper start off as formidable fighters, but are easily overpowered by Bond once they dive into the pool after him.
    • Third-act Blofeld is such a complete nincompoop that the movie makes much more sense if you assume that the real Blofeld was either killed off in the pre-credits sequence or simply never appears in the movie, and that SPECTRE is now being run by one of his duplicates — who, remember, is simply an actor with no clue about how to run an international criminal organization or deal with a pesky British secret agent.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The circus act from the novel of the black girl turning into a gorilla, complete with all the Values Dissonance that entails, makes it into the movie for no apparent reason.
  • Broken Base: Not the film itself (which is generally agreed to be the weakest of the Connery era, and the first serious misfire in the franchise), but rather, the film's decision to be the first to go into full-blown camp. A good portion of the fanbase considers this one way the franchise was Growing the Beard for injecting more humour into the series. For the other fans, it's something they'll never let people forget about this film. Others take the middle ground of being alright with the tone but feeling it poorly executed and undone by Sean Connery's clear disinterest and that the lighter approach was handled much better by the more laid-back and naturally charming Roger Moore.
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  • Complete Monster: Blofeld again. See that page for details.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd are among the most popular henchmen of the series, standing out for their witty banter and for their gruesome yet creative methods of dispatching their victims. They manage to be both menacing and genuinely funny at the same time. There's a jewelry store in London named after them, and various shows have parodied the characters, and they even may have given some Millennials and Zoomers a backdoor into the Bond franchise, as Wint and Kidd would serve as inspirations for some of the Rogues Gallery in the 2000s cartoon Codename: Kids Next Door.
  • Fan-Preferred Cut Content:
    • It's widely agreed that the deleted material with Plenty O'Toole should have been left in the film, as it not only gives her more screentime, but fills in a plot hole regarding how she knew where Tiffany Case lives.
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    • The intended climax involving a full on assault on the oil rig culminating in Bond chasing Blofeld to a salt mine where the villain finally meets his end sounds like it would have been way more satisfying than the final film, not to mention Blofeld getting a proper comeuppance.
  • Genius Bonus: Bond's line, "Alimentary, my dear Leiter" when Leiter is searching for the diamonds in Peter Franks' coffin almost didn't make it into the film. The line refers to the alimentary canal, another name for the gastrointestinal tract, which terminates in...well, you know what. Bond is basically doing a one-liner about how he hid the diamonds on Franks's body where the sun doesn't shine. Apparently, Albert R. Broccoli demanded that screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz remove the line for fear that nobody would get the joke.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Plenty's death by drowning. Lana Wood's older sister, Natalie Wood, died by drowning ten years later. What makes it even more disturbing is that Lana almost drowned for real filming that scene.
    • Bond slapping Tiffany is rather uncomfortable in light of Sean Connery's infamous stance on hitting women.
    • Bond has to be rescued from going up in flames at one point. In No Time to Die, he allows himself to go up in flames to save the love of his life, their child, and potentially the world from the Heracles virus.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • Ho Yay: Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd. The movie suggests that they are a couple, especially in the scene where one of them gets jealous when the other praises Tiffany's physical beauty.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Albert Wint and Charles Kidd are established very early on as dangerous killers, but the point where they cross it is when they murder Plenty O'Toole offscreen by drowning her in a pool in the backyard of a house where Tiffany Case had been instructed to await further instructions, mistaking her for Case, without even bothering to verify her identity. Tellingly, this is their one kill that doesn't have a Bond One-Liner attached to it (spoken by Bond himself whenever he survives any of their attempts on his life), and is played completely seriously in a film full of camp. At this point, James Bond blows his cover to Case and alerts her that the diamond smugglers are being assassinated for a reason whoever's running the operation wants kept secret.
    • They arguably crossed it beforehand by drowning Mrs. Whistler and gloating about doing it and sending the children in her class pictures of her drowned corpse.
  • Narm: This was the first film in the franchise that gave an exaggerated emphasis on comedy. And boy, it shows...
    • The horrible dub job in the opening scene, as the actor keeps his mouth wide open but we still hear "Cai...Cai...Cairo!"
    • Dr. Tynan has a scorpion slipped down his back, which results in him flinging his arms in the air with a cartoonish cry of pain mixed in for good measure.
    • In the pre-title sequence, one of the mooks defending the fake Blofeld attempts to tackle Bond, only to be disarmed by a mousetrap hidden in Bond's pocket.
    • Bond pretending to make out with himself to appear inconspicuous while pursuing Peter Franks.
    • "Plenty O'Toole".
    • The fake Blofeld's death in the Whyte House: he's shot in the head with a piton gun, freezes for a second or two in shock, then suddenly flings his arms in the air and topples over.
    • As terrible as his death is, the Chinese soldier's expression when the Kill Sat's beam hits him is pretty goofy.
    • The entire scene of Bond taking a beating by "Bambi" and "Thumper".
    • Ernst Stavro Blofeld dressed in drag.
    • Tiffany Case brings a lot of it to the table, particularly her rather embarrassing Fight-Scene Failure in the climax where, clad in a bikini she fires a machine gun in the air while covering Bond, sending herself skittering backwards until she falls off the platform.
  • Narm Charm: Bond making out with himself is pretty convincingly shot. It’s dumb as hell, but about as well done as it can be.
  • Never Live It Down: Sean Connery's out-of-shape appearance and dodgy toupée has received a fair bit of criticism over the years, particularly during the scene in which he's naked. His performance has uncharacteristically been bashed a fair bit as well, given that the man clearly, and admittedly was bored to hell and only there for a paycheck.
  • Nightmare Retardant: The death of the chinese soldier by Kill Sat is partly undone by his goofy facial expression.
  • Older Than They Think: Many fans complained that Blofeld had a full head of hair in this movie instead of his iconic bald appearance of the previous two films. In fact, Blofeld did have hair during his appearances in From Russia with Love and Thunderball, though it's difficult to see due to his face being obscured in those films. On top of that, the literary version was also described with an appearance close to that of Charles Gray in this film; in fact, the only reason why the screen Blofeld was ever bald was that Donald Pleasence happened to be bald himself (as was the actor who immediately succeded Pleasence, Telly Savalas).
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Plenty O'Toole, the beautiful woman Bond meets in a casino. Even more so after she decides to let Bond deprive her of her clothes.
    • Peter Franks is only on screen for a handful of minutes, but his surprisingly brutal fight scene with Bond in the elevator is viewed as one of the highlights of the movie.
    • Blofeld's associate Marie only has about thirty seconds of screen time, but is extremely memorable due to how she appears sunbathing in a bikini, before Bond takes out her bikini top and chokes her with it to get information out of her.
  • Replacement Scrappy:
    • Charles Gray's interpretation of Blofeld is the least popular incarnation of the character to date, being much less menacing than his predecessors.
    • Norman Burton as Felix Leiter, who comes across as being far more bad-tempered and useless than his previous appearances. It doesn't help that this comes right before David Hedison's version in the next movie, which (at least until Jeffrey Wright came along in the Daniel Craig films) was widely considered the most popular incarnation of Leiter, especially since he got to reprise the role (the only one to do so before Wright himself) in Licence to Kill.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
    • Sid Haig as one of the Slumber Inc. thugs confronting Bond in Vegas.
    • Shady Tree's "acorns", the showgirls that accompany him on his act, are played by Valerie Perrine and Cassandra Peterson, back when they were Las Vegas showgirls.
  • The Scrappy: Tiffany Case, who very quickly becomes a Damsel Scrappy as she comes to rely on Bond to save her hide on one too many occasions.
  • Sequelitis: It's widely considered Connery's weakest and among the low points of the series for its campy tone, cheap, lousy effects and delirious plot.
  • Signature Scene:
    • The car chase through the streets of Las Vegas is considered by many fans to be the best scene in the film.
    • Plenty O’Toole being thrown out of Bond’s hotel window and surviving when she lands in a pool the Mooks didn’t know was there.
  • Special Effect Failure: Connery's increased salary for the movie meant that a cheaper effects company had to be used to cut costs, and it seriously shows.
    • The Elevator Action Sequence where Bond fights Franks have some really obvious fake glass. The shard Franks used to stab Bond with is clearly plastic, and the actor's hand isn't even bleeding!
    • During the chase scene with the moon rover, one of its wheels randomly rolls across the screen when Bond takes the quad bike. This is because the crew actually crashed the rover off-screen.
    • During the chase through the Las Vegas Strip, Bond drives his Mustang through a narrow alley on the two wheels of his right side, only to exit the alley on the wheels of his left side. The filmmakers attempted to rectify this error by adding a new interior scene of the car, showing it somehow flipping from one set of wheels to the other inside the narrow alley. This arguably made the mistake even worse.
    • Just about any explosion featured in the film. Most of them are nothing more than underwhelming puffs of smoke, especially when Blofeld starts shooting the laser.
    • The Kill Sat itself, which somehow manages to look worse and worse in each shot. In the shots of the rocket launching and separating it actually looks decent, at about the standards of the similar sequences from You Only Live Twice. When the satellite sheds its outer casing and fully deploys, it looks like something you'd see in a cheaper episode of Thunderbirds. By the time it takes out a Chinese military base, the effects standard has dropped to being barely above a contemporary episode of Doctor Who.
    • As terrifying as the scene of Mr. Kidd burning alive is, one can clearly make out Putter Smith's heavy fire retardant gloves as he is set alight. Moments later, when Mr. Wint is blown up by his own bomb, no visible human remains can be seen falling into the water.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Tiffany Case enduring Badass Decay and becoming another bumbling sidekick for Bond to rescue.
    • And poor Plenty, such a fun, lovely girl...
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Bond going on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge to avenge his wife and destroy Blofeld and SPECTRE once and for all would have made a hell of a movie and a Grand Finale to the Sean Connery era, or a great comeback for Lazenby. Too bad the revenge angle all but disappears after the Cold Open, Lazenby was gone, and Connery looks bored as hell. The movie is a giant cheese and camp factory on wheels and nothing with Blofeld really gets resolved.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • James plays with Tiffany's genuine fear of being locked up for pure kicks at times.
    • Women in general really aren't treated or presented well in this movie. Plenty O'Toole is just there to be oogled at and die. Tiffany Chase turns into a bozo after banging Bond. Bambi & Thumper start off as an exception with their ability to fight, overpower and pummel Bond but are easily made useless once they end up in the pool. And then there's Marie, Blofeld's associate who appears in the pre-credits sequence, who is remembered mostly because Bond chokes her with her own bikini top to get information out of her about Blofeld.
    • One of the circus acts is a black girl who changes into a gorilla, combining freakshow entertainment with racist tropes about Africans being monkeys. This is actually a rare part of the movie taken directly from the original novel, which tended to have a lot of Ian Fleming's more troubling tendencies sanded down for the movies.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Two baddies slowly drowning in mud. Also Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd murdering Lord knows how many people (including Plenty O'Toole, who wasn't even involved in the evil plan, simply because she was in Tiffany Case's house at the wrong time).
  • What The Hell, Casting Agency?:
    • Charles Gray as an unexplainably fully-haired Blofeld, with a "proper English genleman" voice rather comparable to M's and Q's — though it can be argued those changes fit the film's decidedly more playful take on the character. Even Guy Hamilton felt that Gray was "not ideal casting".
    • Norman Burton as Felix Leiter, who was considered to be too old and physically unconvincing as Bond's American counterpart.
    • Sammy Davis Jr., which may be why his rather meaningless cameo in the film was cut from the final product.
  • What The Hell, Costuming Department?: Tiffany Case's red hair, which is considerably less alluring than her brown wig she had donned upon her introduction to Bond.

The novel:

  • Harsher in Hindsight: Bond on the idea of getting married: "It wouldn't last. I'd get claustrophobia and run out on her. Get myself sent to Japan or somewhere." (In the novels, OHMSS and You Only Live Twice take place one right after the other.)
  • Nausea Fuel: Ian Fleming lovingly draws out every single detail of how disgusting the mud baths at Saratoga (not to mention its customers) are. It's topped off with one of the most disturbing torture scenes in the book, if not the whole series.
  • The Scrappy: Jack and Seraffimo are easily the least liked of Ian Fleming's main villains, being completely mundane gangsters with completely mundane motives. It's probably telling that they're the only Fleming Big Bads never to have been adapted to film.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Felix makes a joke about how you can't call a measure of whiskey a "jigger" anymore; now you have to call it a Jegro.
    • Felix again; when explaining Wint and Kidd's Backstory he remarks that gays make excellent killers.
    • Felix once again: At one point he refers to rape as a minor crime.

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