For Your Eyes Only: Bond is sent to stop the KGB from buying a stolen device that can control nuclear missiles in the British Navy submarine fleet – ahhh, back down to earth with a Cold War plot!
Opening up with Bond visiting Teresa’s grave is a great touch, reminding the audiences about James’ backstory, and adding more depth to Bond than a dozen soliloquies could. It’s the first of many OHMSS vibes coming out of For Your Eyes Only: Teressa Bond, Ski Chase, Blofeld, Trying to save a woman on the beach…
After the initial burst of promise we cut to the unbelievably terrible Blofeld / Helicopter scene, which is just beyond ridiculous, random and feels so out of place. The last time we saw him, he was slammed into the middle of an oil-rig control room mid-explosion!
Carrying on with the absurd we get one of the worst (comedy) car chases of the series with the yellow Citroen car and a downhill chase in the Mediterranean. Again, unforgivable, the height of campy, and really sums up the Moore era for me.
With all this tomfoolery going on some of the more brutal scenes feel like massive slaps to the face: a couple getting machine gunned down, agent with a slashed-up neck and the unforgettably heinous hit and run on the beach, which looks so real and horrific!
Harking back to the original less-frill film like Dr No & OHMSS there’s a distinct lack of gadgetry, other than the Hi-tech 3D visualiser and an exploding car (that doesn’t need to be driven off a cliff first). Like Thunderball, there’s a few underwater scenes: the rovers & big white suit sections are pretty cool. Lessons learned also as the sound is a lot better than before.
Perhaps the only truly memorable section from FYEO is the rock-climbing piece, where Bond is literally hanging by a thread, and menacing guards looking to cut him out of the picture. Even though you know he must make it, it’s one of the few action scenes that’s genuinely thrilling, and hard to watch – for all the right reasons.
For Your Eyes only isn’t a particularly bad film, nor is it much good. It opens like a serious character piece and ends with a cheap political satire (Maggie Thatcher) – which sums it up really. The tone and story are all over the place. I honestly don’t really know if the actors knew whether they’d wind up as the good or bad guys! It wants the vibe of the original films, but it just doesn’t wash in the early 1980s.
Villain: Beardy, boring, rich old guy – zero iconic parts. 2
Henchmen: Red-esque olympian, hard as nails. ‘The Dove’ man-brutal killer. 8
Bond Girl: Pool party girls, skater nymph (too young and annoying), rich countess roadkill (Total GILF / Brosnan’s first wife!!), Daughter (long hair, well tidy). 7
Action: Remote-chopper, poolside fight/Citroen car chase, Skiing / toboggan, gunfight at docks, cliffhanging. 7