Updated: Nov 12, 2019
Nominee #8 - Golden Eye (1995)
Bond is back with Pierce Brosnan taking up the 007 mantle. He has to save the world from the danger of a nuclear holocaust and he does it in style
Director: Martin Campbell
Writers: Ian Fleming (characters), Michael France (story)
Stars: Pierce Brosnan, Sean Bean, Izabella Scorupco
Coming back after a six-year break and contending with a jaded audience not sure if the world's most famous spy was still relevant, James Bond needed to make a spectacular entrance. The opening scene in Goldeneye (1995) does just that. Bond (Pierce Brosnan's debut as 007) bungee-jumps off a dam into a Soviet chemical weapons facility (one of the most stunning and audacious stunts in entire the Bond franchise).
Thing is, the dam (the Contra Dam in Switzerland) is nearly a quarter of a kilometre high and we’re given the low-down in that first shot with a small plane flying up against the dam. The plane has to climb, climb and climb before going over the dam. The next shot is a man weighted with arm-thick rope, running at break-neck speed on top of the dam until he reaches the middle. There’s a bit of a top-shot where we see the dam from above as the man gets his jumping gear ready, strapping himself with buckles and rope.
Then the low-shot of the dam looking up, up, up, up and believe it or not that shot lasts nearly 10 seconds – no slow motion, just camera sizing the dam up from bottom to the very top. The vantage shot with the jumper getting ready to jump is 5 seconds. The jump.
Top shot he leaps below us and sort of disappears. Bottom-side shot: his feet are straight out behind him like a swimmer, knees together, arms spread out in harmony. He falls, falls, falls in near-silence with just the hum of the wind in our ears, then the clanking of the buckles as the line above disciplines his fall and he turns headlong. As he falls he reaches for further gear. A bottom-up shot showing him hurtling down, shooting an anchor into the concrete base below and reeling himself in, down, foot by foot as he finally reaches the base.
007 (Brosnan) bumps into 006 (Sean Bean) and they together break into a high security Russian facility. Bond sees a deserted chemical weapons unit and wonders why it seems ‘too easy’ and 006 replies ‘half of everything is luck’. A still skeptical Bond wonders back ‘and the other half?’ only to hear the alarms suddenly go off, while his partner replies ‘fate!’.
006 replies ‘half of everything is luck’. A still skeptical Bond wonders back ‘and the other half?’ only to hear the alarms suddenly go off, while his partner replies ‘fate!’.
As Russian troops pour in, 006 is shot before his eyes and Bond is surrounded. He breaks loose and in a hail of bullets claims a small plane just as it’s about to take-off – an army of Russians behind him in pursuit. He’s first thrown out of the plane as it powers on, then he hops on a bike in pursuit of the empty plane. The Russians actually stop in amusement because both plane (with no pilot) and bike (Bond on it!) are headed for a cliff edge. The plane lifts off the edge and starts to nosedive. Bond jumps off his bike and starts to skydive toward the plane, boards it while it’s falling gets it back under control and makes one last swoop over the exploding chemicals facility to make sure the job’s done.