Crimson Tear

Octopussy (1983)
Movie Review



By: Tyler Olson


Everyone Loves A Circus

Warning: this review does contain a few vague spoilers.


Octopussy is the unlucky, or lucky, 13th movie in the Bond franchise, starring Roger Moore as James Bond, Maud Adams, and Louis Jourdan. With nothing better to do, James Bond joins the circus where he is trained by women on how to fight Russians... Ha, I wish!

This is the first time a movie is named after the Bond Girl, and rightfully so. Unlike the other films, Octopussy is the pivotal character in the story... Next to James Bond of course. She's the reason everything in this movie happens, and she even shows how bad-ass of a character she is as she takes on swarms of men. We haven't seen a strong female lead like this since The Spy Who Loved Me.

Actually, this movie has a small army of powerful women. What a sight to behold! It is fantastic to see women treated less like sexual objects and more like people who can actually be useful. The major fight scene involving Octopussy's girls was stunning, and almost revolutionary! Could this be the start of a less sexist James Bond series?

Octopussy's girls
Beware evil, a new league of heroes is here!

Sadly they are all work in a circus... Where else would strong women get treated with respect, right? (This is the point where we all face palm.) Why couldn't they just be normal women working together? Maybe mercenaries trying to free Germany, or something? Oh well, at least James Bond finally got the chance to show his true colours.

007 the Sad Clown from Octopussy
We always knew Moore's Bond was a sad clown under his suit.

And what a clown he was! All the silly behaviour and outrageous gadgets were back again. Okay, maybe a few if Q's inventions were a little over-the-top, but they were all still great fun!

It's too bad we didn't get a good villain, though. Just like the last movie, Octopussy's villains are very unmemorable. Their plan was decent, but their goal felt lazy. After so many films where the bad guys are trying to take over the world, lately the men Bond is going against just feel common. Maybe if they had some unbelievable costumes, or employed minions who appeared more fantasy than reality, these guys would have been more enjoyable to watch.

Hunting Party in Octopussy
But, they have an elephant hunting party. That counts for something, right?

But, by far, the worst part of the entire movie can be summarized into two words: Tarzan Swing. What in the hell were they thinking? Maybe if it wasn't for that yell it wouldn't have been so bad, but they really dropped the ball on that one.

Despite the few annoyances I have with this film, and the weak villains, I still enjoyed Octopussy. It certainly isn't one of Roger Moore's best movies, but I think it's definitely one that most viewers will enjoy. The franchise is definitely starting to feel like it's running out of ideas, though.


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