Thunderball (1965)



Critic Consensus: Lavishly rendered set pieces and Sean Connery's enduring charm make Thunderball a big, fun adventure, even if it doesn't quite measure up to the series' previous heights.

Movie Info

In the fourth of the Sean Connery James Bond films, Bond matches wits with the sinister espionage organization SPECTRE. This time, SPECTRE hijacks a NATO nuclear bomber, hiding the bombs under the ocean depths and threatening to detonate the weapons unless a ransom of 100,000,000 pounds is paid.

Rating: PG (N/A)
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Kevin McClory, Jack Whittingham, Ian Fleming, John Hopkins, John Hopkins (V)
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 19, 1999
United Artists - Official Site


as James Bond

as Emilio Largo

as Domino Derval

as Fiona Volpe

as Felix Leiter

as Felix Leiter

as Count Lippe

as Patricia Fearing

as Paula Caplan

as Miss Moneypenny

as Major Derval/Angelo ...

as Pinder

as Mme. Boitier

as Group Captain

as Foreign Secretary

as Air Vice Marshall

as Mlle. La Porte

as Jacques Boitier

as Hydrofoil Captain

as Ernst Stavro Blofeld
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Thunderball

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Critic Reviews for Thunderball

All Critics (39) | Top Critics (6)

If Thunderball's gimmickry seems to overreach at times, Actor Connery gains assurance from film to film, by now delivers all his soppiest Jimcracks martini-dry.

Full Review… | October 13, 2008
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Slightly bloated Bond, with too much technology for my taste and a climactic slaughter that's a little too mindless to be much fun.

Full Review… | May 6, 2008
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

There's visible evidence that the reported $5.5 million budget was no mere publicity figure; it's posh all the way.

Full Review… | May 6, 2008
Top Critic

The fourth Bond, marking the point at which spectacular hardware began to dominate the series. Sleek and quite fun all the same.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The color is handsome. The scenery in the Bahamas is an irresistible lure. Even the violence is funny. That's the best I can say for a Bond film.

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

The fourth, most commercially successful Bond to date, is known for its pre-credits sequences, underwater battles, and escalating number of violent deaths.

Full Review… | October 29, 2012

Audience Reviews for Thunderball

Though the gadgets get too gimmicky and the climax feels like anything but, 'Thunderball' is significant because it is carried by Connery's most assured performance as Bond.

Kase Vollebregt
Kase Vollebregt

Super Reviewer

This is the fourth entry in the James Bond series, and this timearound Bond once again finds himself squaring off against international criminal organization S.P.E.C.T.R.E.- specifically their member Emilio Largo- an eye patch wearing nut job who drops enemies and ineffectual henchman into a tank full of hungry sharks. Largo has hijacked a NATO nuclear bomber and hidden the bombs in the ocean depths. He gives the British government one week to pay him a ransom of 1,000,000 pounds or else he'll launch the weapons.

Well, it doesn't take long before Bonds sets of for Nassau to foil this diabolical plot, and he's get a few beautiful woman to accompany him along the way.

This is a fun one. It's Connery (once again), and, while he's not as strong as he was in the previous two entries, he's still quite strong here, and very comfortable with the role. It's a solid film, but maybe one of my least favorite of the Connery era. It's not a bad movie, just not quite as exciting as some of the others. It's a bit goofy, but I think it really only adds to the charm.

Plus, we get some great underwater scenes, and those are quite well done, especially for the time period. Those are some of the best parts, but the cinematography in general is quite good, and there's some okay land sequences as well.

With a decent title theme from Tom Jones, a fine score in general, and an entertaining title sequence, this is a really fun movie, and a decent entry in the long running series. Give it a go.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

It's easy to see why this became the most commercially successful Bond entry in the whole franchise to this day. It is the first that has the blockbuster, epic feel that James Bond can nail when done right. It's not as cheesy as Goldfinger, but not as serious as From Russia With Love. It's also the first entry to clock in over 2 hours. It is a little long and the pace is slow at times, but the action sequences are fantastic (especially the underwater sequences, which have some great cinematography) and the story is not as hard to understand as the ones before it. A more than worthy entry into the Connery Bond canon.

Josh Lewis

Super Reviewer

Thunderball Quotes

– Submitted by Dave W (6 months ago)
– Submitted by John W (8 months ago)
– Submitted by Lucas M (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Lucas M (2 years ago)

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