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With exotic locales, impressive special effects, and a worthy central villain, You Only Live Twice overcomes a messy and implausible story to deliver another memorable early Bond flick. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

During the Cold War, American and Russian spacecrafts go missing, leaving each superpower believing the other is to blame. As the world teeters on the brink of nuclear war, British intelligence learns that one of the crafts has landed in the Sea of Japan. After faking his own death, secret agent James Bond (Sean Connery) is sent to investigate. In Japan, he's aided by Tiger Tanaka (Tetsuro Tamba) and the beautiful Aki (Akiko Wakabayashi), who help him uncover a sinister global conspiracy.

Cast & Crew

Sean Connery
James Bond
Tetsurô Tanba
Tiger Tanaka
Karin Dor
Helga Brandt
Lois Maxwell
Miss Moneypenny
John Barry
Original Music
Monty Norman
Original Music
Freddie Young
Cinematographer
Ken Adam
Production Designer
Harry Pottle
Art Direction
David Ffolkes
Set Decoration
Basil Newall
Makeup Artist
Paul Rabiger
Makeup Artist
Eileen Warwick
Hair Stylist
David Middlemas
Production Supervisor
William P. Cartlidge
Assistant Director
Peter Hunt
Second Unit Director
Gordon K. McCallum
Sound Recordist
John W. Mitchell
Sound Recordist
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News & Interviews for You Only Live Twice

Critic Reviews for You Only Live Twice

All Critics (51) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (37) | Rotten (14)

Audience Reviews for You Only Live Twice

  • Feb 15, 2019
    Bond goes to the Orient to try to stop a plan to start thermonuclear war between the superpowers. Charting elements of the Cold War, the space race, and Brit inadequacy, there's mucho action, mucho testosterone, and still time to fondle some of that Asian love. A Bond lovers paradise, with Nancy Sinatra helming the earworm theme song this time around.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Oct 08, 2015
    Sean Connery's fifth 007 adventure becomes shaky - though not stirred - thanks to some unwieldy impossible plot points, but the awe-striking stunts and eye-catching Asian backdrop frame an overall spectacular adventure. Really, this exciting chapter only stumbles when it trips over the tongue in its cheek. Between the volcano lair, mustache twirling villainy (minus an actual mustache), and too many go-go gadgets, it's hard to see where You Only Live Twice ends and the deserved spoofs begin. The Austin Powers series smartly apes much of the film's spectacle, but - then again - that's an amazing compliment to the film's iconography. Still, silliness of the now-classic genre tropes and over-reliance on top gear aside, You Only Live Twice is a briskly paced spy game. In this classic spy caper, Agent 007 (Connery) and the Japanese secret service ninja force must find and stop the true culprit of a series of spacejackings before nuclear war is provoked. Even though he would relinquish the part in the follow-up, Connery never once phones in his performance of Bond. He throws himself into the derring-do even when the script throws too many props at him. With this chapter, the series' increasing cheekiness and deviation into formula comes near - but doesn't completely overtake - the suspense and intrigue. The action, however, rarely disappoints and Donald Pleasence gives a deliciously arch performance as Bond nemesis Dr. Evil, er, Ersnt Blofeld. Harold and the Purple Crayon and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory author Roald Dahl provides the script, but this overblown adventure shows all the earmarks of show-boating producers "Cubby" Broccoli and Harry Saltzman pulling out all of the stops. Bottom line: Or So It Seems
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 02, 2015
    I think You Only Live Twice suffers from the same mistakes that Thunderball made, which is trying to too much different. The first three Sean Connery Bond films are each terrific in their own right but they follow the same structure just in a slightly unique way. With You Only Live Twice (YOLT), I once again felt like I wasn't watching a Bond film at all. This film takes Bond all the way out to the Japan area and closer (but really farther away) to the inter-workings of Spectre. I'm on record saying that I have grown tired of seeing the leader of Spectre teased and teased in each film without any actual payoff. We get that here, but the Japanese structure gives this film enough uniqueness to hold me off one more time. Why it took them so long to reveal who is behind Spectre is beyond me, but I just think this and Thunderball were missed opportuities. The problem is that I can't help but think the reason to bring Bond to Japan was to appeal to a broader audience. That's fine, but if you lose the fans you had in the first place, it does no good. Another strange thing about YOLT is that much like Thunderball dealt with underwater sequnences, this film dealt with space exploration and Spectre's interest in capturing American spacecrafts. It's just too out there for a James Bond film. But unlike Thunderball, YOLT only has maybe one cool action sequence and music that isn't as fresh or exciting as Thunderball. Although the climax of the film does give us action packed thrills and our first look at you know who, it doesn't save the rest of the film for me. The Japanese aesthetic ends up growing tiresome after you spend 80% of the movie there. I wish the franchise would have integrated the more interesting characters back at MI6 at this point in the series. Understanding that Bond is a man coming back from the dead in this story, I wish the films themselves would do the same. Return to what made the franchise so exciting and entertaining. +Spectre finally unveiled, sort of +New aesthetic +Ambitious -But the change to the setting seemed forced and money oriented -Silly at times -Why space? 6.1/10
    Thomas D Super Reviewer
  • Aug 03, 2015
    Another Bond film that people don't really remember apart from the soundtrack and the fact that we finally get to see the leader of Spectre Dr Evil oops I mean number 1, The plot is pretty silly just like most of the gadgets in this film like the tiny one person helicopter that manages to fight 4 other helicopters with ease plus there's also some other non needed gadgets too, Having said that there was some nice little stunts and the action was ok, But it never leaves its comfort zone and nothing is really new to speak of and that's why it's never one of the first 007 films we think of.
    Jamie C Super Reviewer

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