Ranking The James Bond Songs # 9 – 7

9. Goldfinger (from Goldfinger) – Shirley Bassey
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Everyone’s favourite Bond song makes my Top 10, but it has never been my favourite. Is it the definitive Bond song? Yes, probably, and it features one of the finest vocal performances and set many of the standards, but it isn’t my favourite. It has a superb introduction, wailing horns gradually getting softer and leading in to a seductive verse. Bassey towers over the music as if the music was played much louder in her ears when recording her vocals – completely belts them out with much more force than is remotely necessary. Massive swell and massive final note. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eSnbaPW1Cfw

8. The Look Of Love (from Casino Royale 1967) – Dusty Springfield

Blasphemy! A spoof Bond song finishing higher than the definitive song!? I feel this is (at this point in time) the stronger song, with Dusty giving a timeless performance, her voice sounding disturbingly similar to some of the instruments. It’s a smokey, sexy performance, a beautiful series of melodies throughout, brilliantly constructed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tf1d65OHYXo

7. The Writing’s On The Wall (from Spectre) – Sam Smith

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I assumed I wouldn’t like this given that the previous couple of films have had atrocious songs, and that I had not liked anything I had heard from Smith so far. This one is getting a lot of stick currently for sounding too…. feminine? I don’t know, sounds like a lot of Dude Bro types just felt their testicles get a little less hairy when they heard this, wanting instead a song suitable for blasting quads in the gym or whatever it is dickheads do with their time nowadays. This has grown on me quite a bit, and maybe it’s so high on my list because it’s fresh, but nevertheless Smith gives an emotional performance in a song that feels honest, and feels like another chapter of the Bond saga coming to an end. It has a desperate, dark tone, full of angst and melancholy. There is the big Bond opening, followed with a bleak piano line. I’m hoping dearly now that the film will be emotional in the vein of Casino Royale and that James gets some closure over Vesper. It is a gorgeous song.

Let us know below what your favourite Bond song is.

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Best Sound: 1964

Actual Nominations: Goldfinger. The Lively Set. My Fair Lady. Father Goose, Becket. Mary Poppins. The Unsinkable Molly Brown.

Again I’ve merged the two sound categories together, editing and mixing. Mary Poppins and Goldfinger stand out this year with Norman Wanstall getting my vote for the Bond film due to the outstanding melding of music and effects to create a cohesive score. The sounds used in many of the special effects are memorable too.

My Winner: Goldfinger.

My Nominations: Goldfinger. Dr Strangelove. The Fall Of The Roman Empire. A Hard Day’s Night.

My Winner: Goldfinger

Goldfinger

Goldfinger

This is the point where the Bond series really fired into action-terrific stunts, explosive action, good set pieces, memorable villains, car chases, gadgets, and feisty, strong willed women. Probably deserving of being called the best Bond movie, though it is not my favourite, as it has everything a Bond movie should have. It also stands beside other action films for its excitement levels, is full of one-liners and memorable images, and has a very good plot and strong performances from everyone.

Bond is investigating a gold smuggler, in a brief turn away from the full blown SPECTRE plots of previous films, and uncovers a plan to destroy the world’s economy. Bond meets Auric Goldfinger, the man believed to be responsible, and soon is struggling to stop the plan and save the world.

Goldfinger has many famous moments which have become more than simply memorable movie scenes- The Jill Masterson ‘turns to gold’ scene, the ‘Shocking’ bath moment, the famous Aston Martin’s ejector seat scene. The laser scene. Pussy Galore, as her name may suggest is Bond’s ‘girl’ this time, and is easily the strongest female character to date in the series. We have Oddjob, a terrifying silent assassin who uses his steel rimmed bowler hat to dispatch of his enemies, one of the best bad guys in any Bond movie, and Goldfinger himself is the archetypal Bond Villain- smart but…dumb. The theme tune is one of the strongest, and the film made sure that Bond had a place in movie and cultural history.

The DVD has sparkling visuals restored for modern viewing, and the same can be said for the sound. The 2nd disc is full of interesting features which will satisfy all Bond fans- from the nerds to the passing enthusiasts.

As always, please leave your comments on the movie and the review- is this the best Bond ever? And don’t forget to check out my other Bond reviews in the DVD section.