James Bond at 50

AT a table in a crowded club, a man and woman are playing baccarat. The man is an enigma. We don’t intially see his face, only parts of him are visable; a close up of his hands, a shot of his back. The woman asks for a £1000 loan in order to continue the game.

The man speaks: “I admire your courage, Miss...”

“Trench. Sylvia Trench. I admire your luck Mr...”

“Bond. James Bond.”

This is how the world was introduced to Sean Connery’s charismatic protagonist in 1962’s ‘Dr. No’. The film, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, was the first of Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels to recieve a cinematic adaptation and would launch a franchise which returns this November with ‘Skyfall’. James Bond is a spy working for British intelligence that is given the task of unravalling the mystery behind the murder of a fellow agent. Bond travels to Jamaica and encounters a plot to disrupt Cape Caniveral rockets by a nefarious criminal, Dr. No. Along the way he survives several attempts on his life and meets Honey Ryder, the first ‘Bond girl’, memorably played by Ursula Andress.

I view this film as the template in which all others would follow. It features all of the iconic traits that have become synonomous with the character; Maurice Binder’s dream like opening titles, Bond’s humour, the cars, the gadgets, the girls, even the film’s theme tune would become known as the ‘James Bond theme’.

For a character that has had an impact as large as Bond has, it is fitting that his 50th year on screen is being marked with a year long celebration. I advise you join in this celebration by watching ‘Dr. No’ and discovering why the world first fell for Bond. James Bond.

By Kelan Headley