Live and Let Die - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Live and Let Die Reviews

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½ January 7, 2018
Questionable racist portrayals, a tepid script, but great Paul McCartney opening theme song. Introducing Roger Moore, one great car stunt over bridge.
December 29, 2017
This is one of the most fun bond films. According to me, one of Moore's best Bond performances, an iconic villain, bizarre and awesome moments. A damn good Bond entry.
December 27, 2017
Roger Moore's first turn as 007 has aged badly. The jive-talking villains and voodoo, nowadays feel a little off.
This is an entertaining Bond movie but is just a series of chases on foot, car and boat.
Rodge is fine in the lead role and has a nastier side but lacks the physical presence of Connery.

Gadgets 3/5 thankfully its just over the top stunts that when you were a kid you loved
Girls5/5 Jane Seymour is gorgeous in this movie and has an interesting role as a psychic
Villain 2/5 silly nowadays
Bond Theme 4.5/5 one of the best from Wings
½ December 16, 2017
One of my favorite James Bond films.
December 10, 2017
I loved this movie when I first saw it nearly 40 years ago, and I still love it now even though it is dated. It's fast and funny and introduces the new bond very well. It also has probably the best boat chase in film history.
November 7, 2017
It may not be a top-tier Bond flick, but Live and Let Die successfully introduces Roger Moore's James Bond with great action and improved humor. Even some of the less realistic action is grounded in at least some reality, the villain is underrated and menacing, and Moore's performance is truly great.
½ October 21, 2017
While far from perfect, Live and Let Die nonetheless introduced the world to Roger Moore's Bond in top form, with fun gadgets, over-the-top henchmen, and a glorious Yaphet Kotto. Unfortunately, scrimping on the budget led to a profoundly ugly film in the production design department. However, Bond in a Bullitt-style outfit is always welcome.
½ September 30, 2017
I don't see spies taking advice from taro card players in the first place. Though if she's hot I guess we have to listen. Excellent comedy relief though.
August 23, 2017
Fueled by its vast array of diversity, Live and Let Die manages to pull in the crazy stunts, the comedy and most importantly of all the action.
½ August 11, 2017
If a little bit confusing at first, the ending more than makes up for the rest of the movie, making it an enjoyable 007 movie.
July 25, 2017
It doesn't have the wit and it doesn't have the style of the best Bond movies.
½ July 12, 2017
A fun, goofy 007 outing that introduces Roger Moore as a suave Bond and offers all of the Bond staples while mixing in a few new elements that are hit and miss.
½ June 26, 2017
A decent entry for Roger Moore. More comical the the others.

½ June 25, 2017
Three MI6 agents, including one "on loan" to the American government, are killed under mysterious circumstances within 24 hours of each other in the United Nations, New Orleans and a Caribbean nation, San Monique, while monitoring the operations of the island's dictator Dr. Kananga (Yaphet Kotto). James Bond (Roger Moore), agent 007, is sent to New York City to investigate the first murder. Kananga is also in New York, visiting the United Nations and representing San Monique. Just after Bond arrives, his driver is shot dead by Whisper, one of Kananga's men, while taking Bond to meet Felix Leiter of the CIA. Bond is nearly killed in the ensuing car crash. A trace on the killer's licence plate eventually leads Bond to Mr. Big, a ruthless gangster who runs a chain of Fillet of Soul restaurants throughout the United States. It is here that Bond first meets Solitaire (Jane Seymour), a beautiful tarot expert who has the power of the Obeah and can see both the future and remote events in the present. Mr. Big, who is actually Kananga in disguise, demands that his henchmen kill Bond, but Bond overpowers them and escapes unscathed. Bond flies to San Monique, where he meets Rosie Carver (Gloria Hendry), a CIA double agent. They meet up with a friend of Bond's, Quarrel Jr., who takes them by boat near Solitaire's home. Bond suspects Rosie of working for Kananga. She is shot dead, remotely, by Kananga, to stop her confessing the truth to Bond. 007 needs to find out the truth about Dr. Kananga and Mr. Big and try to stay alive in the process...

"Live and Let Die" was released during the height of the blaxploitation era, and many blaxploitation archetypes and clichés are depicted in the film, including derogatory racial epithets ("honky"), black gangsters, and pimpmobiles. It departs from the former plots of the James Bond films about megalomaniac super-villains, and instead focuses on drug trafficking, a common theme of blaxploitation films of the period. It is set in African American cultural centres such as Harlem and New Orleans, as well as the Caribbean Islands. It was also the first James Bond film featuring an African American Bond girl to be romantically involved with 007, Rosie Carver, who was played by Gloria Hendry. The film was a box office success and received generally positive reviews from critics. It was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song for "Live and Let Die", written by Paul and Linda McCartney and performed by their band Wings.

Ian Nathan of Empire magazine wrote " This is good quality Bond, managing to reinterpret the classic moves - action, deduction, seduction - for a more modern idiom without breaking the mould. On one side we get the use of alligators as stepping stones and the pompous pitbull of rootin' tootin' Sheriff Pepper caught up in the thrilling boat chase. On the other, the genuine aura of threat through weird voodoo henchman Tee Hee and the leaning toward - what's this? - realism in Mr Big's plot to take over the drug trade from the Mafia." He concluded that " Moore had got his feet under the table." Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times stated that Moore "has the superficial attributes for the job: The urbanity, the quizzically raised eyebrow, the calm under fire and in bed". However, he felt that Moore wasn't satisfactory in living up to the legacy left by Sean Connery in the preceding films. He rated the villains "a little banal", adding that the film "doesn't have a Bond villain worthy of the Goldfingers, Dr. Nos and Oddjobs of the past." Chris Nashawaty similarly argues that Dr. Kananga/Mr. Big is the worst villain of the Roger Moore James Bond films. BBC Films reviewer William Mager praised the use of locations, but said that the plot was "convoluted". He stated that "Connery and Lazenby had an air of concealed thuggishness, clenched fists at the ready, but in Moore's case a sardonic quip and a raised eyebrow are his deadliest weapons". Reviewer Leonard Maltin rated the film two and a half stars out of four, describing it as a "barely memorable, overlong James Bond movie" that "seems merely an excuse to film wild chase sequences". Danny Peary noted that Jane Seymour portrays "one of the Bond series's most beautiful heroines" but had little praise for Moore, whom he described as making "an unimpressive debut as James Bond in Tom Mankiewicz's unimaginative adaptation of Ian Fleming's second novel...The movie stumbles along most of the way. It's hard to remember Moore is playing Bond at times - in fact, if he and Seymour were black, the picture could pass as one of the black exploitation films of the day. There are few interesting action sequences - a motorboat chase is trite enough to begin with, but the filmmakers make it worse by throwing in some stupid Louisiana cops, including pot-bellied Sheriff Pepper." IGN ranked Solitaire as 10th in a Top 10 Bond Babes list. In November 2006, Entertainment Weekly listed "Live and Let Die" as the third best Bond film.

With "Live And Let Die" Roger Moore entered as 007 and the character changed a bit with him. Moore had not the same style nor violent appearance as Connery had, but he had more of a humourous take on the character that works in the first films which eventually became ridiculous in his last Bond films. And he also played the character as a suave, sophisticated English gentleman compared to Connery and Lazenby for that matter. What I love about "Live And Let Die" is that this film dared to go blaxploitation with a storyline portraying a Bond villain that is not after world domination in that classic Bond way. Yaphet Kotto is great as Dr. Kananga/Mr. Big and his closest henchman Tee Hee with a metal arm and claw is a great addition as as well (even if they could´ve made the metal arm and claw a bit more believable as you can see how abnormally long his arm is...). Baron Samedi is a great supporting role as well. The lovely Jane Seymour as Solitaire is as solid in the cast and I do love Gloria Hendry as Rosie Carver despite her being written as a too scared and not maybe too bright character. Yes, the somewhat ridicoulous treatment of female characters in the Bond universe is there, but you can either go with it or try to ignore it. However, Solitaire has depth with her melancholy and fatalistic nature. "Live And Let Die" has a great boat and bus chase sequence, exotic locations, beautiful Bond women, solid villains, great supporting characters, memorable music with Paul McCartney & Wings excellent title song "Live And Let Die", a bit of violence/ thrills and a tad bit humour. Love the scene when one of the MI6 agents is watching a traditional New Orleans funeral and a man emerges next to his side. The agent asks the man "Whose funeral is it?" and is told "Yours" and he is immediately stabbed to death and picked up with the coffin by the funeral procession. I like that there´s not that much gadgets and things that is there to just amuse the audience. "Live And Let Die" is a straightforward and entertaining Bond film (despite flaws) and clearly one of Moore´s best ones.

Trivia: Sean Connery turned down the then astronomical sum of $5.5 million to play James Bond. Connery gave Roger Moore his personal seal of approval for inheriting his role, calling him "an ideal Bond".

Ross Kananga (credited as "stunt coordinator") was the owner of the alligator/crocodile farm in which Bond escapes some hungry reptiles. Kananga did this stunt by himself wearing Roger Moore's clothes and shoes made of crocodile skin. The crocodile shoes were a fun idea of Roger Moore. It took five attempts to complete the stunt. During the fourth attempt, one of the crocodiles snapped at one of the shoes as it went by. The producers (while scouting locations) first took notice of Ross Kananga's farm from the sign out front which read: "WARNING; TRESPASSERS WILL BE EATEN." This sign can be seen in the finished film. They liked Ross Kananga so much that the movie's villain, Dr. Kananga, was named after him.

Roger Moore should not have been available for the part since at the time he was committed to The Persuaders! (1971), but when the show flopped in the U.S. he was prematurely released from his contract.
June 13, 2017
Roger Moore takes over here. I liked this new version of James Bond myself. The whole jungle voodoo thing was rather campy but silly fun. It wasn't meant to be serious. I think the producers wanted to appeal to an entirely new audience. They succeeded.
June 4, 2017
there's not much of a action packed adventure, all I see is just a raciest bond film. Although Live and Let Die does have some nice gadgets and fantastic but the way the film is executed is just weak, that and the fighting and chase scenes are more of a mix ,there all do weak but most of the time they go nowhere, well at least is still racist
May 28, 2017
In retrospect, a fresh change of pace is the key.
May 27, 2017
A bizarre film memorable for many strange elements, the series continues its comedic turn, but this works better with Moore stepping into the role. The slapstick and comic relief characters are still out of place (although these are mercifully small roles, unlike in later films). Moore shows promise in his first appearance, as long as you can accept this different style of Bond, but he's not really given much to do beyond the one-liners. Jane Seymour is also under-utilised, suffering from being written as one of the weakest ever Bond girls and fuels a side plot that is not just weird, but downright creepy. The villain isn't bad, Yaphet Kotto's performance is good, but like Connery's last film he seems too small fry for Bond to be dealing with and he's mostly upstaged by several henchmen, who may be the film's real highlight. The plot is unfocused, constantly dropping threads along the way, and while the series is often far-fetched the reliance on mysticism and tarot predictions make it fanastical in a completely different way to the other films. Ultimately, the scale and the vibe feel more Starsky and Hutch than international super spy; it's not clear why we should care about... whatever it is that's at stake, nor does it feel like Bond does, and there's little drama at all for the audience to get invested in.
May 26, 2017
Not the strongest 007 story for Moore's first entry, but still an enjoyable entry into the series along with Moore's instant and accepted success as 007.
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