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The Living Daylights (1987) artwork

The Living Daylights (1987)

3rd March 2001

When a high ranking Russian general defects to the west, and subsequently kidnapped by the KGB, James Bond becomes embroiled in a weapons smuggling conspiracy.
Timothy Dalton, Maryam d'Abo, Jeroen Krabbé, Joe Don Baker, John Rhys-Davies, Art Malik, Andreas Wisniewski, Thomas Wheatley, Desmond Llewelyn, Robert Brown, Geoffrey Keen, Walter Gotell
Action/Adventure, Crime
2
2 Hours 10 Minutes

When Bond helps in the defection of a top ranking Soviet general, Georgi Koskov, he becomes suspicious of the defection process. However, he follows his orders and proceeds with the cleverly devised method of the generals defection to the west. During his debriefing Koskov discloses a plan by the KGB to kill all its enemy agents. But before Koskov can give the British anymore information, he is abducted from his remote hiding place by a KGB snatch squad.

Fearing for the safety of their agents Bond is soon dispatched to Morocco to kill the KGB officer masterminding the operation. However, once there Bond uncovers a sinister plot to play the British and Russian agents off against each other whilst Koskov smuggles hi-tech arms unabated.

The picture is reasonable enough with an above average bit-rate throughout the film with no signs of artifacting or outlining. However, I did notice quite a lot of picture imperfections and just wonder where this film stock originated from. Fortunately, the picture glitches were only an occasional problem and didn't really distract you too much from the on screen action.

The sound is good with plenty of action in the surround channels as well as the occasional LFE. The dialogue is clearly audible in the centre channel and at a level which doesn't require continuous adjustment of the volume. When the action and A-ha inspired soundtrack bursts into life it really fills the rooms with the excitement that only Bond can give.

As usual for the Bond series, the extras are plentiful and interesting for all Bond fans. However, the documentary does reveal a side to Timothy Dolton than made me completely dislike his Bond role. During an interview with the press, when he is revealed to the world, he dismisses most of their questions as "none of their business". A stereotypical view of a 'big headed' actor? I think not - this man is simply arrogant.

Fortunately, Patrick Macnee is back to narrate the Bond documentary, but the films audio commentary is still poor. Although John Glenn actually says more than in A View to a Kill, and interesting it is to, it is still presented in a boring monotone drone until John starts talking.

There's a reasonable amount of action to keep the Bond fans happy, but it has been far too Amercianised for my taste, and to be fair to Dolton he does inject some vigour into the role which the aging Roger Moore lacked. However, it is still one of my least favourite Bond films.

  • Audio Commentary Featuring Director John Glenn and Members of the Cast and Crew
  • Inside "The Living Daylights" An Original Documentary
  • "Ian Fleming - 007's Creator" Documentary
  • "The Living Daylights" Music Video from A-ha
  • Never-Before-Seen Deleted Scene: The Magic Carpet Ride
  • The Making Of "The Living Daylights" Music Video
  • Theatrical Trailers
  • Collectable "Making Of" Booklet
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment kicks off the new year with The Grinch, Illumination's heartwarming tale for all seasons, released on DVD, Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray and 4K UHD 11th March 2019.Read more
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