Time: 117 mins.
Genre: Action/Spy Thriller
Now that all the Bond films are out on DVD, I'm beginning to catch up on the trials and tribulations of everyone's favorite secret agent. Since I find Sean Connery the most attractive of the actors to play Bond, I've started with his forays into the character. I really didn't know anything about YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE except that it starred Connery and took place in Japan. Though it has some amazing production design and great action sequences, much like we see in the more current Bond films, I didn't enjoy it as much as DR. NO or GOLDFINGER. Mainly, because most of the films' efforts seemed to go into the look and action instead of the story and dialogue.
The plot itself, which must have seemed a fantastic stretch of the imagination in 1967, plays out as downright silly in the year 2000. They usually aren't the most believable storylines to begin with, but this one seemed to be stretching the limits more than just a tad. Granted, it was probably ahead of its time when first released. The film centers on the space program and the relations between the United States and Russia. Ernst Blofeld (Pleasance) the head of the evil SPECTRE organization is bent on world domination. What better way to get it then by having the two most powerful nations on the planet go to war with each other? He accomplishes this little coup by wreaking havoc with their space programs, kidnapping their astronauts from outer space.
Both super powers think the other is behind the mischief in order to be the first, and therefore, dominant power over the planet. They have no idea that this is just a game and that they're being manipulated into World War III. That's where Bond comes in. The British government believes a third party is behind the interstellar heists and want Bond to prove it...before it's too late. Of course, the world thinks Bond is dead, which allows him a little more freedom to move about without detection. M thinks the phantom rocket is being launched from Japan. It turns out he's right, or the Japanese aren't very friendly to foreigners. At least the males. The females seem to like Bond just fine.