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 Where did THAT come from?

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Gravity's Silhouette
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PostSubject: Where did THAT come from?   Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:35 pm

This thread is for listing a scene or set of scenes that seem to stand out as weird, unusual, or out of place within the context of a bigger film; perhaps something unexplainable. My examples:

#1 TSWLM: the film is fairly light-hearted and action packed, and then after a spectacular chase involving a motorcycle, a rocket, a helicopter, submarines, and the Lotus Turbo Esprit, we get this really odd, really bizarre scene with Bond and the hotel maid. The music gets ominous, the tone gets serious, and Bond opens the knock at the door. With a deadly serious look the receptionist says: "I have a message for you." Bond: "I think you just delivered it."

Was there hidden or secret meaning to that encounter that I've failed to grasp all these years? It felt like the scene was being built up to go somewhere and then it just....didn't.

#2 GOLDENEYE This one is a little different, not because you can't understand it, but because you can and it still doesn't work. It's the scene where Natalya confronts Bond about being "alone", on the beach. Even for a film that was meant to be a bit more realistic than the Moore films, yet a little more lighthearted than Dalton's, the scene can't strike the right balance. The film was shot live, on location, yet somehow the waves in the background look fake, making the whole scene seem filmed on a soundstage. And then the film gets really serious with this exchange. It feels like an important scene, but at the same time it doesn't feel like anything that went before the scene helped bring us to that scene. It's what you expect a writer to have them say, but the characters don't feel as if they earned that self-reflective moment.

#3 AVTAK....This one has bothered me from the day I first saw this film in 1985. Near the end, as Zorin and Scarpine are trying to maneuver the ship away from The Golden Gate bridge, the camera switches to Stacy slinking out of her seat and getting ready to pounce. She's still in the passenger area when someone yells: "Right rudder." then "Get away!" (?) The "right rudder" comment I get, but "Get away"??? If the remark was made to Stacy, she didn't seem to acknowledge it was meant for her, and the voice didn't sound like either Patrick Bachau or Christopher Walken. In fact, it sounded like something that was looped in by someone else during an Additional Dialogue Recording session in post-production.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Sun Apr 22, 2012 11:12 pm

For your #1, I've found that TSWLM was at times, tonally confused. Like after the dramatic car chase, we get a very light-hearted journey toward Atlantis. I know it's supposed to be the 'beautiful', but even so, the tone totally shifts and the music doesn't actually emphasise beauty or danger.

For your #2, I think it's one of the best scenes in the franchise! The cinematography doesn't look fake in the slightest, IMO. What brought that scene on was essentially the collection of moments Natalya had witnessed of Bond: The train explosion, the meeting with Wade in the Bahamas, the escape from the archives/tank chase. Even before that, when the attack on the Space Station saw her colleagues killed at the mercy of rogue agents. She's sick of people dying. She starts warming to Bond (the kiss), and she realises when Wade wishes him luck on the mission, that he's going to be risking his life once again. She doesn't want to lose him too!

I'm not sure what you talking about in the last scene. I should watched AVTAK again...

My 'Where Did That Come From' Scene would be also in AVTAK. The scene works well on mute, but bloody hell, why put the Beach Boys on during the snow chase?
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:54 am

FieldsMan wrote:

I'm not sure what you talking about in the last scene. I should watched AVTAK again...

My 'Where Did That Come From' Scene would be also in AVTAK. The scene works well on mute, but bloody hell, why put the Beach Boys on during the snow chase?

Well, we do understand where The Beach Boys song comes from in that scene, even if we don't agree with the reasoning behind it. I think the whole chase is completely undercut by the inclusion of the song because the song is meant to be nothing more than a quick grab for an easy laugh. I wish EON would go back and re-edit some of these movies. With digital technology they could computer-generate Roger Moore's face on to the stunt drivers in the Paris chase without spending a whole lot of money, not to mention erasing that irritating Beach Boys song.

The line I'm referring to in AVTAK occurs right before the blimp slams into the bridge. Stacy hasn't yet attacked Scarpine and Zorin. The camera is still focused on Stacy and Dr.Mortner when someone, off-camera, yells: "Right rudder. Get away." It kind of sounds like two different people, but none of the voices really sound like Walken or Bachau. It could be that Zorin yells: "Right rudder" and then Scarpine answers "Right away", but it sounds like "Get away".

Maybe Bond and Beyond could chip in and hire CNN's Gary Tuchman and his audio expert to tell us what we're hearing on AVTAK's audio track.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:52 pm

Quote :
#1 TSWLM: the film is fairly light-hearted and action packed, and then after a spectacular chase involving a motorcycle, a rocket, a helicopter, submarines, and the Lotus Turbo Esprit, we get this really odd, really bizarre scene with Bond and the hotel maid. The music gets ominous, the tone gets serious, and Bond opens the knock at the door. With a deadly serious look the receptionist says: "I have a message for you." Bond: "I think you just delivered it."

Was there hidden or secret meaning to that encounter that I've failed to grasp all these years? It felt like the scene was being built up to go somewhere and then it just....didn't.
I think the point of this scene was to show that Hotel Receptionist (not hotel maid)was hot for Bond. This is Rog. You can't very well have him just open the door, take the message and say thank-you, without Hotel Receptionist sizing him up again. Plus the scene serves as an excuse to give us fanboys another opp to slobber over the awesome Valerie Leon.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:55 pm

From memory, she had some big tits.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:27 pm

CJB wrote:
From memory, she had some big tits.

Marvelous melons. I do believe she placed quite well in the great BAB mams contest which is still going on, as you well know.

Val also played the fishing-boat girl that Sean cavorts with in NSNA.

One of the great all-time, two-time, Bond-girls.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:19 am

tiffanywint wrote:
Quote :
#1 TSWLM: the film is fairly light-hearted and action packed, and then after a spectacular chase involving a motorcycle, a rocket, a helicopter, submarines, and the Lotus Turbo Esprit, we get this really odd, really bizarre scene with Bond and the hotel maid. The music gets ominous, the tone gets serious, and Bond opens the knock at the door. With a deadly serious look the receptionist says: "I have a message for you." Bond: "I think you just delivered it."

Was there hidden or secret meaning to that encounter that I've failed to grasp all these years? It felt like the scene was being built up to go somewhere and then it just....didn't.
I think the point of this scene was to show that Hotel Receptionist (not hotel maid)was hot for Bond. This is Rog. You can't very well have him just open the door, take the message and say thank-you, without Hotel Receptionist sizing him up again. Plus the scene serves as an excuse to give us fanboys another opp to slobber over the awesome Valerie Leon.

But the piano music in the background is "ominous" and "Foreboding". You get the sense that something bad is about to happen, and then she hands him an envelope and that's it. Both of their performances in that scene match the music, so who is to blame for this? It didn't happen by accident?
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:31 am

Gravity's Silhouette wrote:
tiffanywint wrote:
Quote :
#1 TSWLM: the film is fairly light-hearted and action packed, and then after a spectacular chase involving a motorcycle, a rocket, a helicopter, submarines, and the Lotus Turbo Esprit, we get this really odd, really bizarre scene with Bond and the hotel maid. The music gets ominous, the tone gets serious, and Bond opens the knock at the door. With a deadly serious look the receptionist says: "I have a message for you." Bond: "I think you just delivered it."

Was there hidden or secret meaning to that encounter that I've failed to grasp all these years? It felt like the scene was being built up to go somewhere and then it just....didn't.
I think the point of this scene was to show that Hotel Receptionist (not hotel maid)was hot for Bond. This is Rog. You can't very well have him just open the door, take the message and say thank-you, without Hotel Receptionist sizing him up again. Plus the scene serves as an excuse to give us fanboys another opp to slobber over the awesome Valerie Leon.

But the piano music in the background is "ominous" and "Foreboding". You get the sense that something bad is about to happen, and then she hands him an envelope and that's it. Both of their performances in that scene match the music, so who is to blame for this? It didn't happen by accident?

Yeah, that scene was very odd. It's not like the, "Speak now, or forever hold your peace/piece" double entendre from TMWTGG, which was way over my head when I was a little kid, but which made me laugh hysterically when I finally "got it" many years later. That scene in TSWLM is just sort of there. It isn't really funny or very tense. It just is filler.

My own addition to this thread would be the first Q scene from LTK. I'm not referring to the scene as a whole. Many people rightly remark that this scene doesn't work with the rest of the film tonally (much like the tonal problems in TSWLM), but I understand what the scene is doing, for the most part. Q has inexplicably decided to help Bond, and is giving him his equipment. Fair enough. But there are two moments in the scene that simply make no sense at all:

1. Q says something about Dentonite toothpaste being, "the latest in plastic explosives" and Bond says, "I could do with some plastic" or something like that. What? Is this literally referring to Sanchez's window? Is is some lame pun/joke about Bond wanting a credit card? I don't get it, at all.

2. Later Pam uses the Polaroid to take a picture of Bond and Q, and mistakenly uses the flash. The picture shows Bond and Q's skeletons, and also appears to show El Presidente's portrait with a skeleton (but I can't be sure). Pam looks at the photo and says, "that's odd". What's odd? There's too much that's odd here for me to even comment. Is this scene supposed to be funny? Is there some subtext I'm totally missing here? I just find these moments in the LTK Q scene inexplicable.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:23 am

FieldsMan wrote:
For your #1, I've found that TSWLM was at times, tonally confused. Like after the dramatic car chase, we get a very light-hearted journey toward Atlantis. I know it's supposed to be the 'beautiful', but even so, the tone totally shifts and the music doesn't actually emphasise beauty or danger.


Music actually sounds a little like the Al Capone theme in DePalma's UNTOUCHABLES.

SPY is totally schizorphrenic. I think more people like it because if they don't like one scene, wait and there will be something totally different in the next reel.

For me, SPY's ?? is the 4-shot maiming death of Stromberg. Bond putting a shot into his crotch through the tube - one shot - I can see, and it is even almost funny. but then another .. and he stands & shoots AGAIN, then, after a pained reaction, he fires again (you hear it, don't see it, I think.)

That's the kind of death I'd reserve for real felons, not OTT megalomaniacs in a bond film. A LIGHT bond film at that.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:58 am

Gravity's Silhouette wrote:

But the piano music in the background is "ominous" and "Foreboding". You get the sense that something bad is about to happen, and then she hands him an envelope and that's it. Both of their performances in that scene match the music, so who is to blame for this? It didn't happen by accident?

Yes the scene is kind of odd. The mood is a touch off. Being an OTT escapist Bond-film though, I think Gilbert and whoever, just said, wtf, it does't quite work ,but at least we got another shot of Valerie Leon in, and were able to build up more Rog-Bond stud cred, which was always a safe move in these funner Bond films.

As for Pam and the x-ray film. I wondered about that for years too and actually someone did explain exactly what she meant on the old board,but I've already forgot their answer. Maybe someone here can take a stab.

I thought Rog did go a little Dirty Harry on poor Strommers too, but again I think such scenes do reflect on Rog's inconsistent portrayal of Bond. Sean would have found a way to make it work, but Sean knew how to handle the darker stuff. Rog was a tad awkward playing nasty Bond.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 1:11 pm

The Pam thing is a postmodern wink at camera thing, because she IS referencing the fact that the people in the picture on the wall also are showing x-ray skeletons. It's just stupid, and I bet you could HEAR Dalton's eyebrows going up at the premiere seeing something like that in the final cut.

Then again if I were Dalton I'd've been more concerned with why the hairstylists used the duration of this motion picture to call in sick.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 5:05 pm

I never really understood one part of the DIE ANOTHER DAY pre-titles. When Bond arrives in North Korea, he is posing as a South African diamond smuggler. He takes the briefcase of diamonds to Moon, but Moon already has the hovercrafts that he wants to buy. So why does he need the diamonds? Does he want to buy more hovercrafts? And if so, what is "Mr. van Biert" supposed to get in return for smuggling the diamonds in?

trevanian wrote:
FieldsMan wrote:
For your #1, I've found that TSWLM was at times, tonally confused. Like after the dramatic car chase, we get a very light-hearted journey toward Atlantis. I know it's supposed to be the 'beautiful', but even so, the tone totally shifts and the music doesn't actually emphasise beauty or danger.
SPY is totally schizorphrenic. I think more people like it because if they don't like one scene, wait and there will be something totally different in the next reel.
TSWLM feels like a rushed rehash of YOLT. Because it is. It was the film that kicked off the troubles with McClory, because EON wanted to bring SPECTRE and Blofeld back. Anthony Burgess wrote a script that sounded fantastic, where SPECTRE was reduced to a few key operatives like Blofeld and Bunt, hidden away from a world that no longer feared them. The organisation was taken over in some kind of insurrection, and the new SPECTRE decided to hold the world to ransom by forcing world leaders to humiliate themselves (ie the Royal family had to parade naked through the streets of London, the Pope had to paint over the Sistene Chapel, and so on) or else risk being attacked.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:31 pm

Re that scene in DAD ... after Moon says 'Show me the diamonds', Bond says 'Show me the weapons'. I inferred from that that 'Mr Van Biert' was an arms dealer as well as a diamond smuggler, and the diamonds are meant to be a payoff for the hovercrafts, 'tank-busting' gun etc.

In a thread about 'WTF?' moments from Bond, surprised no-one's mentioned 'I'll buy you a delicatessen...' from FYEO yet.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:50 pm

Blunt Instrument wrote:
In a thread about 'WTF?' moments from Bond, surprised no-one's mentioned 'I'll buy you a delicatessen...' from FYEO yet.

That line always cracks me up. I always took it to indicate how clueless Blofeld was about what Bond was interested in, and also how pathetic Blofeld becomes once he's at Bond's mercy. Maybe it is genuinely a failed WTF moment, but I always felt it was meant to be comedic and succeeded at that goal.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:35 pm

Prisoner Monkeys wrote:
Anthony Burgess wrote a script that sounded fantastic, where SPECTRE was reduced to a few key operatives like Blofeld and Bunt, hidden away from a world that no longer feared them.
SPECTRE didn't feature in Burgess' draft. It was a new villain entirely, and his organization, I believe, was called CHAOS.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:58 pm

Blunt Instrument wrote:
Re that scene in DAD ... after Moon says 'Show me the diamonds', Bond says 'Show me the weapons'. I inferred from that that 'Mr Van Biert' was an arms dealer as well as a diamond smuggler, and the diamonds are meant to be a payoff for the hovercrafts, 'tank-busting' gun etc.
I just always found it odd that Bond should be delivering the diamonds to Moon when Moon already had the hovercrafts. If anything, it should be the other way around; Bond has the hovercrafts and Moon has the diamonds. Or that Bond would be buying the hovercrafts with the diamonds. The diamonds came up later in the story, where Bond pointed out that the diamonds that supposedly came from Argentina were actually from western Africa. It's implied that he recovered the diamonds from the army base and used them to build his fortune as Graves.

Given the long and bloody civil wars in west Africa, it's possible that Moon was actually supplying the hovercrafts to the Africans in exchange for diamonds because he had already conceived the idea for Icarus at that point. That would make far more sense to the story: MI6 believe Moon is selling off North Korean military hardware to Africa. Bond is sent in to flip him and turn him into an informant in Korea until's Moon's source tips him off.

Harmsway wrote:
Prisoner Monkeys wrote:
Anthony Burgess wrote a script that sounded fantastic, where SPECTRE was reduced to a few key operatives like Blofeld and Bunt, hidden away from a world that no longer feared them.
SPECTRE didn't feature in Burgess' draft. It was a new villain entirely, and his organization, I believe, was called CHAOS.
Hmmm. Maybe I'm mixing up my TSWLM drafts. I know one of them had Blofeld and Bunt and a handful of other SPECTRE operatives growing old and bitter, resenting a world that no longer feared them. They had largely ceased their operations when a band of terrorists took control of SPECTRE and started committing acts in their name, or something like that. Maybe I've gotten my mental wires crossed and mistaken that for Burgess' draft.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Tue Apr 24, 2012 10:58 pm

First line of Wiki's plot synopsis for DAD seems to back up what I thought -

'James Bond — Agent 007 and sometimes simply '007' — infiltrates a North Korean military base, where Colonel Tan-Sun Moon is illegally trading African conflict diamonds for weaponry'.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:44 am

Blunt Instrument wrote:
First line of Wiki's plot synopsis for DAD seems to back up what I thought -

'James Bond — Agent 007 and sometimes simply '007' — infiltrates a North Korean military base, where Colonel Tan-Sun Moon is illegally trading African conflict diamonds for weaponry'.

This is exactly what is happening. I thought it was clear. Moon was trading weapons for conflict diamonds to build his space weapon. Later as Graves, he pretends he found the diamonds in Iceland, to explain away his fortuitous wealth. The hovercrafts don't enter into the exchange.

I dont' know what Burgess drafted, but it's been definitely out there for a long time, that Eon was considering Blofeld as lead TSWLM villain, but McClory put the kibosh on that. Bastard.

As for the stainless steel line. That's a Cubby in-joke. This line was mentioned in Cubby's autobiography WHEN THE SNOW MELTS. It refers to Italian mafia members offering this as a bribe to get something in exchange. A delicatessen in stainless steel was and still is the top of the line quality.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:31 pm

EON did consider Blofeld for TSWLM, but I think Blofeld showed up later in the drafts (was it Maibaum's?) and was transformed into Stromberg.

Burgess' draft doesn't really have anything that made it into the finished film. It was zany as all get-out. As a big Burgess fan, I wish I could read it. What is known about it sounds fascinating.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:05 pm

tiffanywint wrote:
This is exactly what is happening. I thought it was clear. Moon was trading weapons for conflict diamonds to build his space weapon. Later as Graves, he pretends he found the diamonds in Iceland, to explain away his fortuitous wealth. The hovercrafts don't enter into the exchange.
The "Show me the diamonds." / "Show me the weapons." exchange suggests otherwise. I think Bond was buying the hovercrafts from Moon, but the problem is in the way that Moon describes the hovercrafts, saying that they float over the mines. Since his plan is to ultimately invade South Korea, his description of them suggests he is buying them, not selling.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:11 pm

I thought it was always abundantly clear that the hovercrafts were just part of Moon's arsenal, and that they were simply being used to transport the weapons that Bond/Van Bierk was buying.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:23 pm

Nope, never picked up on that. I guess it's just symptomatic of the problems with the film. At times, it seemed like they were more interested in referencing the previous 19 films than they were in making the 20th.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:47 pm

Harmsway wrote:
I thought it was always abundantly clear that the hovercrafts were just part of Moon's arsenal, and that they were simply being used to transport the weapons that Bond/Van Bierk was buying.
This I believe is the case. I've never had any reason to believe otherwise. It makes perfect sense also that Moon would have a fleet of hovercrafts, simply because of the minefields that he needs to traverse.

The hovercrafts yes, also serve as yet another homage. In this case to DAF. DAF it seems did have a disproportionate share of homages in this film.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:20 pm

Re the TSWLM treatments ... apparently Richard Maibaum was on board in the early stages, and submitted a draft which incorporated ideas that had been submitted by the other writers previously involved. It featured a strike force made up of members of various real-life terrorist organisations (Red Brigade, IRA etc) storming SPECTRE HQ and taking control. Think it was ultimately rejected on the grounds of being too overtly political for a Bond.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did THAT come from?   Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:28 am

After having just rewatched TSWLM, I'd say another weird thing is how Gogol announces Sergei Barsov's death to XXX. He could have just said, "Sergei was on a mission in Berngarten, Austria and was killed by a British agent." That would have given enough clues to raise Anya's suspicions of Bond later when he produces his lighter, and it wouldn't have delved into exactly why Barsov was trying to kill Bond (which is pretty immaterial anyway - it's an excuse for Bond to ski off a cliff! :face: ).

But instead, we get something pretty nearly like this:

Anya: How did he die?

Gogol: We haven't all the details yet but it seems he'd become involved in a British Secret Service operation.

To which my response is, :suspect: :suspect: :suspect: ??? Is Gogol trying to conceal the fact that he ordered Barsov to assasinate Bond (and nearby helped cause Barsov's death)? Was Barsov a rogue agent ("freelance hit team")? The only other alternative I can think of is completely bizarre. M hired Barsov to shoot blanks at Bond to test his training and fitness. Bond aced the training perfectly, but unfortunately, not knowing that Barsov was only shooting blanks, Bond killed Barsov. The training was a success though - Bond wasn't sent back to Shrublands. tongue
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