Since 2009, an anti-homosexuality bill has made its way back and forth in the courts of Uganda. This bill threatens people in same-sex relationships with life imprisonment and threatens those who might know a homosexual with their own three-year imprisonment if they refuse to turn in said homosexual. In the original bill brought to the Ugandan parliament, a death sentence was also imposed on any “aggressive homosexual,” terminology that is ever-so wrought with confusion and vagueness.
Author Dustin Freeley
As we meet Bond (Roger Moore) for the first time, he receives a teletype via wristwatch. Clearly, he must quickly abandon his latest female conquest and enter into a mission of grave danger. While the mountain-set ski scene that follows is a testament to green screens and lousy CGi of the later 70’s, the rest of the film transcends it beginning’s hokum.
The Bret Easton Ellis trope of masturbatory nihilism is obvious in the first few moments of The Canyons upon Ryan’s rhetorical interrogative, “does anyone really know anyone?” The seemingly short distance between the two couples at the restaurant table is cold desert at midnight. Two of them, Ryan and Gina, both of who are looking for careers in Hollywood, are out of place in the shadow of the trust-funded Christian (James Deen) and his girlfriend Tara (Lindsay Lohan). The former want to be in the network of the latter, so they chat, mundanely. The latter are disinterested and insular, so they speak perfunctorily and spend more gazing into the touchscreens of their cellphones than in the eyes of their dinner guests.
Only a year removed from his Bond debut in Live and Let Die, Roger Moore finds himself again in the famed role in The Man with the Golden Gun. If nothing else, this film teaches us that director Guy Hamilton—who was behind the camera for four Bond films—is versatile in his directorial choices in that the tone and style of each is markedly different. Goldfinger, while the most fetishized of the franchise, is kind of hokey, inundated with puns / innuendo, and a departure for Bond from his first two films. Diamonds are Forever is a bit more politically savvy than the Hamilton bunch, but, more importantly, tries to recapture the audience turned off by On her Majesty’s Secret Service by using longer takes on Connery and convincing him to speed up the action and take a few stage fighting classes. Live and Let Die is carried by its soundtrack and tries desperately to fit in with seventies tropes. While it succeeds, it’s mostly forgettable aside from some Paul McCartney vocals.
South Park’s first episode of season fifteen is titled HumanCentiPad. Riffing on both the recent release of the snuffy, visceral film The Human Centipede and consumers’ willingness to get shat on, it centers Kyle’s stomach-churning fate on our general refusal to read the terms and conditions that we nearly automatically agree to with the simple click of a digital check box. I’m not above this practice, and I’m fully aware that convenience and my need for rapid gratification impels me to cursorily skim the contents of an agreement, noting what I assume to be okay and avoiding anything that could be perceived as negative just so I can get that day’s crossword puzzle from the New York Times. The gist of this episode, as with most South Park episodes, is to point out the extremes of an issue and the fact that there are choices. Namely: there’s a choice to click and a choice not to. There’s a choice to read the terms and a choice not to. But what we’re really getting down to is this: if you choose not to read the terms and conditions, then you don’t get to bitch about them.
Live and Let Die, which might be best known for the Paul McCartney title song that includes the most grammatically annoying and redundant lyric in all of song history (“if this ever changing world in which we live in…”) embraces the seventies, trading in the previous installments’ exotic locations like the Caribbean or the Far East for a gritty car chase along New York City’s FDR Drive and the über-abject embrace of Blaxploitation. I’d like to say that the film does its best to be covertly racist by having its antagonizing heroin dealer Kananga, proclaim “man or woman, black or white, I don’t discriminate.” Sure, he’s an equal opportunity drug kingpin, but it’s hard to look past the depiction of a culture wickedly linked to Voodoo, which—as it is depicted—is seen as more akin to pagan cannibals than veritable faith.
In more ways than one, Diamonds are Forever tries to wash our minds of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. The classic Shirley Bassey returns to provide deep, strong vocals to the title track once again, and Connery returns to the role he left four years prior. What’s more, Diamonds are Forever begins in Japan, where You Only Live Twice left off, almost completely erasing George Lazenby’s brief endeavor as the Lothario agent.
Based on and adapted from the play of the same name by Neil Labute, Some Girl(s) should remain on the stage, where the audience’s feeling of voyeurism is palatable and almost acceptable as they are let into each unassuming, more similar than not hotel room in which the lead protagonist, Man (Adam Broday – and seriously, confronts his ex flings and girlfriends in an attempt to, well, show how doggish the archetypal man can be. Unfortunately, the entire film is one of chauvinism.
There’s a reason why the departure from the Connery-run of James Bond films is little known or seen. On Her Majesty’s Secret Service comes in the four-year gap between You Only Live Twice and Diamonds are Forever, but it – and its leading man, George Lazenby – are often more familiar as an answer to random trivia about James Bond stars.
The title itself seems little less than relevant – aside from offering a satisfying introduction to the fifth James Bond film, You Only Live Twice. In the beginning, we see Bond in a familiar situation, with a beautiful women, this time slightly more exotic than in previous incarnations in that she’s Chinese. But she, like many of his conquests, has a dark side – and she’s setting him up for assassination. As the doorbell rings, she closes the Murphy bed on which James sprawls, and he is, presumably trapped, and the bed it riddled with bullets.