Franchises of All Time
James Bond Films
Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
James Bond Films
Dr. No (1962) | From Russia With Love (1963) | Goldfinger (1964) | Thunderball (1965)
You Only Live Twice (1967) | On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) | Diamonds are Forever (1971)
Live and Let Die (1973) | The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) | The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
Moonraker (1979) | For Your Eyes Only (1981) | Octopussy (1983) | A View to a Kill (1985)
The Living Daylights (1987) | Licence to Kill (1989) | GoldenEye (1995) | Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
The World is Not Enough (1999) | Die Another Day (2002) | Casino Royale (2006) | Quantum of Solace, 007 (2008)
Skyfall (2012) | Spectre (2015)
See Bond Girls in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
Opening Credits, Title Sequence
Film Plot Summary
The pre-title credits sequence was set at a "Terrorist Arms Bazaar on the Russian border" between Afghanistan and the Soviet Union. In the snowy mountainous locale, dealers and buyers were inspecting illegal arms ranging from machine guns to mines, to scuds, attack helicopters, and fighter jets with torpedo missiles ("fun for the whole family"). The proceedings were viewed, via video camera, by a group in London, including Bond's superior M (Judi Dench), British Admiral Roebuck (Geoffrey Palmer), and Russian General Bukharin (Terence Rigby). Several of the wanted terrorist participants were identified, via video camera, as Satoshi Isagura (a chemical expert wanted for the Tokyo subway attack, and currently working for insurgent forces in Zaire), and Henry Gupta (Ricky Jay) (an American techno-terrorist) who was interested in purchasing a US-made GPS missile tracking encoder to control navigation satellites. The hard-headed British Admiral impulsively initiated a missile strike against the bazaar "to take out half the world's terrorists" -- despite M's protest that her 007 agent James Bond (Pierce Brosnan), dubbed White Knight, hadn't finished his reconnaissance mission there.
The HMS Chester was ordered to fire one of its missiles, targeting the bazaar in a little over four minutes, when White Knight refused to withdraw and reported that one of the jets at the bazaar was equipped with Soviet SB-5 nuclear torpedoes. The Admiral called the naval vessel to abort the missile, but it was already too late - the missile was out of range. White Knight, revealed to be Bond, fought his way to the L-39 Albatros jet fighter carrying two Soviet nuclear torpedoes to prevent a contaminating radioactive disaster. To create chaos, he blew up part of the base with a cigarette lighter grenade and other explosives (number of deaths unknown), and commandeered the jet to make a daring hijack-escape, as Gupta stole the GPS encoder. With 30 seconds until the missile's impact, Bond took off - but found himself garrotted by the revived co-pilot in the seat behind him, and pursued by a second jet fighter through the mountainous terrain. He was able to eject the co-pilot into the second plane's co-pilot's seat after positioning his own plane underneath the other one - the ejection caused the jet to lose control and explode (# 1-2 deaths, # 1-2 Bond kills) - Bond quipped: "Back-seat driver." He reported to headquarters: "I've evacuated the area. Ask the Admiral where he'd like the bombs delivered."
The British frigate HMS Devonshire was on routine patrol in the South China Sea when a general alarm was sounded after two Chinese J-7 fighter jets overflew the vessel with possible "hostile intent." The MIGs reported the ship was in Chinese territorial waters and threatened to attack, although the Devonshire insisted, through satellite tracking, that it was in international waters. Meanwhile, in the Hamburg, Germany headquarters of the Carver Media Group Network (CMGN), the stolen, reprogrammed GPS encoder had been used by techno-terrorist Gupta to lead the British ship 70 miles off course and into Chinese waters. Also, a black armor-plated catamaran-style Stealth Ship invisible to radar and led by blonde Aryan chief of security Stamper (Gotz Otto) was stalking the Devonshire. He ordered the deployment of a massive Sea Drill (with three grinding wheels), fooling the British into thinking it was a Chinese aerial torpedo, and then reported in to his superior - an insane billionaire media mogul named Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce) - the power-crazed, Rupert Murdoch-like villainous worldwide head of CMGN.
The Sea Drill quickly ground its way through the hull and into various other areas of the interior, sinking the ship (number of deaths unknown). The Devonshire's captain was able to send a message to Admiralty: "Have been torpedoes by Chinese MIGs. Sinking" and then ordered: "Abandon ship." The Stealth Ship then fired one of its missiles and destroyed one of the J-7 jets sent to investigate (# 3 death). The few survivors in the water were mercilessly and in cold-blood machine-gunned down (with Chinese ammunition!) by the menacing Stamper (number of deaths unknown). Media mogul Carver prepared his next day's Tomorrow newspaper headlines: "BRITISH SAILORS MURDERED - ??? machine-gunned bodies found." A team of divers swam down to the sunken ship, where they retrieved one of the ship's nuclear missiles.
The attack's architect, Carver, led a meeting of his associates via video conference, where he learned the day's international headliner catastrophes would be "Floods in Pakistan, riots in Paris, and a plane crash in California." New software was being released, deliberately containing bugs to force people to "upgrade for years." He requested extortionist pressure on the President to sign a bill lowering cable rates - adding that a video would be released of him with a cheerleader in a Chicago motel room. Stamper reported on 17 survivors in the sinking. Megalomaniac Carver then exulted in the "perfect story" for the launch of his Satellite News Network -- a small crisis brewing in the South China Seas. He exulted in how his monopolizing network of media outlets would be the first to provide coverage, with boosted TV ratings and newspaper sales:
At Oxford University in England, agent 007 was "studying a new tongue" with his gorgeous blonde Danish professor, Inga Bergstrom (Cecilie Thomsen), who complimented him on his "natural ability." Bond and Bergstrom were making love ("practice makes perfect") when they were interrupted by a phone call from Miss Moneypenny (Samantha Bond). He explained he was at Oxford "brushing up on a little Danish." (# 1 tryst) She said he would have to "kiss off" his lesson due to an international emergency - the British fleet was being deployed to China. Moneypenny ended the call: "You always were a cunning linguist, James."
Back at headquarters of the Ministry of Defence, M disagreed with Admiral Roebuck's assessment of the Chinese threat. She claimed that at the time of the Devonshire's sinking, a mysterious GPS signal (later revealed to be from one of Carver's satellites) might have sent the ship off-course, and she wanted to prevent World War III by not taking a hasty, retaliatory military action. [He said she didn't have "the balls" for the job - she quipped back: "Perhaps, but the advantage is, I don't have to think with them all the time."] Roebuck asserted the fleet would be sent in - prepared for "full retaliation" to answer the "unprovoked attack on a ship in international waters." On the contrary, M stressed the need to investigate and take a more moderate approach, without sending in the entire British Navy and escalating the situation. Bond appeared with a copy of Carver's Tomorrow newspaper, with news of the murder of 17 British sailors - critical details not yet released publically ("Someone at Tomorrow knew before the Vietnamese government did") - about how the victims were riddled with bullets similar to those used by the Chinese Air Force. M was given 48 hours to investigate the sinking before the fleet arrived and decisive action would be taken against the Chinese
In a moving limousine traveling to the London airport, M assigned Bond to travel to Hamburg, Germany, to attend a party at Carver's media center celebrating the launch of a new communications satellite ("He has the ability to reach every human being on the Earth - except the Chinese, who have refused broadcast rights"). She knew that he once had a relationship with Carver's wife, Paris. His job was to discover if a signal sent from one of Carver's communication satellites was involved in the ship's off-course sinking ("to find out whether Carver or someone in his organization sent that ship off course and why"). Although she disapproved of Bond's womanizing, she made an exception, encouraging him to rekindle his old relationship to get inside information: "Use your relationship with Mrs. Carver if necessary... Remind her, then pump her for information." Moneypenny then joked: "You'll just have to decide how much pumping is needed, James." Displeased with the idea, he responded: "If only that were true of you and I, Moneypenny."
In Hamburg, Germany, Tomorrow's headlines proclaimed: "CHINA WARNS BRITISH FLEET." At the airport, "Q" (Desmond Llewelyn), posing as an Avis rental car agent, questioned Bond about various types of accident insurance available for his "beautiful new car." Bond enjoyed the repartee about coverage for his rental car with the gadgets master, hinting that "accidents do happen." In one of the airport hangars, "Q" revealed a 4-door silver BMW 750 with "all the usual refinements - machine guns, rockets, the GPS tracking system." He demonstrated the vehicle's remote-controlled steering system, controlled through a cellphone's touch-pad. Bond sped the car around the lot and back to where they were standing, braking only a few inches in front of them.
At the lavish CMGN party, Bond posed as a banker and was introduced to Carver. They both met an attractive Asian female named Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh), claiming she was a journalist from the New China News Agency who had gate-crashed the party and was intent on meeting Carver. He suggested that the forthright woman should work in his Beijing bureau. Bond slipped away to speak to Carver's high-class trophy wife Paris (Teri Hatcher) - she abruptly slapped him for his past treatment of her - and his final words to her: "I'll be right back." He had claimed: "Something came up." She ordered a "vodka martini, shaken not stirred" for him, and champagne for herself - toasting: "To the gun." She had asked if he still slept with a gun under his pillow. Unbeknownst to Bond, he was being monitored by Gupta's security video cameras, and Carver also noticed their discreet rendezvous.
Mrs. Carver cautioned Bond about going after her husband, who was possibly "in trouble." She was immediately on to his tactics about using her through a one-night stand: "And you figured you could charm the dirt out of me...If it comes to a choice between you and Elliot, I've made my bed. You don't sleep in it anymore." When Carver joined them and asked how they knew each other, Bond claimed they were "old friends." To not displease her husband, she lied - she said they were only "casual acquaintances" - he had dated her roommate in Zurich. Carver asserted how he had offered Wai Lin a job "behind a news desk." Creating an instant dislike between himself and Carver, Bond asked a knowing question about his satellites, positioned globally - tools that could potentially be used for "disinformation...to manipulate the course of governments or people, or even a ship." Soon after, Carver suspected Paris' association with the "banker" and called aside Stamper to deal with him. Bond told Wai Lin that he specialized in banking's "hostile takeovers." As Carver's PR officer (Daphne Deckers) announced the beginning of Carver's TV broadcast to mark the completion of the Carver Global Satellite Network, a few of Carver's henchmen summoned Bond to an urgent phone call.
Carver began his presentation with a mention of the "terrible conflict" in the South China Sea, and its "potential to destroy every human being on Earth." Bond was led to a sound-proof recording studio where he was beaten by thugs - and Stamper ordered: "Make him uncomfortable." As Bond was asked about his inordinate 'concern' regarding Carver's business, he fought back and broke free, and crashed into the CMGN newsroom, while Carver was delivering a deranged speech about his worldwide satellite network and "complete, utter, total worldwide domination, but not over governments or ideology. Over tyranny and isolation and ignorance." Carver offered a declaration of his humanitarian principles - "to report the news without fear or favor. I promise to be a force for good in this world, fighting injustice, crushing intolerance, battling inhumanity, striking a blow for freedom..." He was cut off mid-sentence when Bond pulled the circuit breakers, and the room was darkened as he went off the air. Angered, Carver fired his PR lady, as Stamper surveyed the damage.
In the next scene, Bond sat patiently but apprehensively in his Atlantic Hotel room suite, drinking from a bottle of Smirnoff, and preparing his gun with a silencer for an anticipated assailant sent by Carver. Rival networks broadcast gloating reports about how "scrappy media mogul Elliot Carver was cut off the air tonight." Carver was humiliated by the failure of his inaugural speech. He explained to Paris how at age 16, he had learned "one important lesson" working at a Hong Kong newspaper -- "the key to a great story is not who or what or when, but why." He knew that Bond had "made a mess" - and affirmed: "I want to know why." He sent Paris, clearly afraid of him, on a mission to see Bond and find out about him. Paris arrived at Bond's hotel door, pleasantly surprising him. She warned: "He's on to you." When Bond suggested that she return home - and told her he didn't want her involved, she responded: "It's too late for that." It was obvious that their relationship hadn't cooled much -- she asked: "What was it, James?...Did I get too close for comfort?" Their eyes locked and they passionately kissed. He undressed her by slipping her dress from her bare shoulders, and unzipping the back of her dress - it fell to the floor, revealing her bare back, black panties and netted stockings. She whispered: "I missed you." (# 2 tryst)
Gupta reported to Carver about Bond's "perfect" ten -year employment record, after hacking into his bank, but it appeared "too good to be true." He concluded that Bond was a "government agent" working undercover -- and then played back some of Bond's conversation with Paris during the party that he had recorded on a security video. Carver realized that there was more to their "acquaintance" than he had originally suspected, and ordered her murder: "I think we should set an appointment for my wife with the doctor." The next morning as Paris dressed in Bond's suite, he suggested that he could get her away from Carver and out of the country in four hours, but she refused: "I have no choice. No one can protect me from him, not even you." Before leaving, she told Bond about Carver's secret top-floor laboratory in his CMGN complex (with an emergency hatch on the roof, "the easiest way to get in"). She also mentioned how Bond's job was "murder on relationships."
Bond broke into the CMGN building through the roof, and with his cellphone's detachable antenna lock pick, he opened the hatch. He overheard Gupta arranging for the $300 million satellite to be sent to a launch site. With another gadget, his phone's electrical discharge stun-gun weapon, he entered a secure area and located a wall-safe behind a picture frame. With his phone's fingerprint scanner, he opened the locked safe, where he found porno magazines, a hypodermic needle and drugs, and more importantly, the GPS encoder (which had sent a misleading signal to the HMS Devonshire). When he was leaving, he was startled by the unexpected entrance of Wai Lin, who inadvertently tripped an alarm when she broke into the building. He asked: "Looking for a news-story?" They fled in separate directions - he proceeded to the roof and shot one guard (# 4 death, # 3 Bond kill), while she escaped using a wrist harpoon-device to fire a climbing rope and piton to walk vertically down a wall. He fought against another security guard, sending him plunging into the newspaper printing press (# 5 death, # 4 Bond kill) (Bond: "They'll print anything these days"). He fled to the street where he got away in his parked BMW, and as he drove back to his hotel room, Carver phoned -- and requested back two of his possessions: the red box (encoder) and his wife in Bond's hotel suite.
Stamper watched (and reported on a walkie-talkie: "He's coming") as Bond pulled up outside his hotel, and then drove into the underground parking garage and set his car's high-voltage security system, after putting the GPS encoder in the car's hidden fingerprint-activated safe in the glove compartment. He found Paris strangled in his hotel suite's bed, as a news broadcast on the TV (a recorded videotape, actually) was announcing her death. As he became overcome with despairing grief and anger, the news-report also claimed that her body was accompanied by the body of an "unidentified man who appeared to be the victim of a self-inflicted gun wound" - an apparent murder-suicide that Carver was planning. Bond was held at gunpoint by the hired killer Dr. Kaufman (Vincent Schiavelli), who noted that the videotape they had been listening to would be broadcast in one hour. He bragged about his prowess as an assassin and as a "very gifted" torturer (his "hobby"), who could easily make murder look like suicide ("I go all over the world. I am especially good at the celebrity overdose"), and as he was about to shoot Bond, he was notified by Stamper that his men were unable to enter Bond's highly-secured BMW. Bond tricked Kaufman into using his mobile phone to unlock the car -- when Kaufman pressed recall-3-send on the keypad, he activated the electrical discharge stun-gun weapon and shocked himself - and Bond grabbed his gun. When Kaufman pleaded: "I'm just a professional doing a job," Bond replied: "Me too" - and ruthlessly and vengefully shot him in the head (# 6 death, # 5 Bond kill). He kissed Paris' cheek before leaving.
Bond fled as police arrived, and was able to escape across the hotel's roof, then back to his parked car in the multi-story garage. He activated the car's remote control device by tapping twice on his phone's keypad, and then deployed the tear-gas mechanism to temporarily blind the thugs. He remotely started the car, drove it next to where he was hiding, jumped in through one of the rear windows, and drove off - crouched down and controlling the car from the back seat, steering it with guidance from the phone's CCTV monitor screen. During the remarkable chase sequence as he was pursued, he set off most of the vehicle's gadgets and weapons -- the rockets hidden in the sun-roof, the metal-spike dispenser from the rear bumper to shred tires, the reinflatable tires, a retractable chain-cable cutter from the hood ornament, etc. (number of deaths unknown), and then he jumped out (after retrieving the GPS encoder from the glove compartment). He sent the car sailing off the roof and crashing into the show-window of the Avis rental car office across the street. The vocal warning system spoke: "Congratulations on a safe journey!"
Uniformed Commander Bond landed by helicopter at a US Airbase in the South China Sea, and was reunited with his liaison, CIA agent Jack Wade (Joe Don Baker), last seen in the previous film GoldenEye. The official political position of the US was neutrality in the "turkey shoot," according to Wade. They met with the Air Force's GPS expert/scientist Dr. Dave Greenwalt (Colin Stinton), who was surprised to see the missing encoder in Bond's possession. Greenwalt theoretically demonstrated how the tampered encoder was used to slowly send the Devonshire off-course (similar to putting a magnet next to a compass), and said he could determine approximately where the Royal Navy's frigate sank. Wade provided Bond with a plane that flew him to the site of the Devonshire's last position, and he free-fell/parachuted into the sea (with a dangerous HALO, or high-altitude low-opening jump) in search of the sunken wreckage, located in Vietnamese waters. He quickly found the ship close to the surface (unstable and teetering on rocks), and entered through a large hole 'drilled' into her hull. Rock falls around the ship threatened to send the wreck into a deep abyss or sea trench. In the missile room, as he noted that one of the larger cruise missiles was missing, he was approached from behind and startled by another diver -- Wai Lin -- who was also investigating. When the rock slide toppled all the missiles from their racks and blocked their main exit, they were forced to remove their scuba gear to squeeze through a narrow access hatch. When they surfaced, her Chinese support boat had been over-taken by Stamper and his men - one of the crew was harpooned to death (# 7 death). The two were taken prisoner, handcuffed together and helicoptered to Carver's Saigon CMGN headquarters decorated with a huge banner of his face (Bond: "I'd say he'd developed an edifice complex").
Inside the facility in the hallway, Wai Lin covered up her shock when she recognized corrupt Chinese military leader General Chang (Philip Kwok) accompanied by Chinese soldiers in civilian clothing. They were brought to Carver, who was using a computer pad-screen to compose their obituaries for the next day's paper. The two prisoners learned each other's true identities: he was an agent of the British Secret Service, while she was associated with the Chinese People's External Security Force. The headline read that they "were found dead this morning in Vietnam." Carver discounted their story that they had been working together for months. The present day's headlines were projected for them: "CHINA WARNS OF WAR" and "THE EMPIRE WILL STRIKE BACK." Carver claimed that "words are the new weapons, satellites the new artillery." The insane media mogul boasted of a worldwide media empire that would dominate the globe: "I have my divisions. TV, news, magazines. And by midnight tonight, I'll have reached and influenced more people than anyone in the history of this planet, save God Himself." Carver left them in the hands of his sadistic henchman Stamper and his "toys" (chakra torture devices passed on by the late Dr. Kaufman) - Stamper described his apprenticeship to the revered Kaufman: "He was like a father to me." The chakra surgical instruments were designed to probe the body's seven energy centers, "inflicting the maximum amount of pain." With a combination of Wai Lin's martial arts kicks and Bond's quick reflexes and skills, they fought off their captors, grabbed a machine-gun (number of deaths unknown) and fled through a smashed window to the building's rooftop. Realizing they were trapped, they lept off the edge of the building, and used the large Carver banner - ripping it down its length - to abseil to a lower-story, where they shattered an office window with their body weight, and then ran to the street-level entry and stole a BMW R1200 motorcycle.
In the spectacular chase sequence through the streets of Saigon, as they escaped - each one steered one of the handlebars while being hotly pursued by Range Rover vehicles and a chopper, both carrying armed killers. They were strafed by machine-guns and the chopper's weapons, as they fled through alleyways, across bridges, into houses, open-air markets, and along rooftops and collapsing terraces. They threw obstacles in the way of the pursuit vehicles, including barrels and a truck filled with exploding firecrackers. At one point, they performed a stunning and daring high-speed roof-top motorcycle jump with the bulky 1600cc BMW bike across the hovering helicopter. When they were trapped by the copter's rotating blades in a dead end, they skidded under the chopper, and then Bond threw a clothes-washing cable-line into the rotors, causing the machine to lose control and crash (# 8-11 deaths, # 6-9 Bond kills). Afterwards, they took a sexy, outdoors clothed "shower" together, although she was reluctant to get close to him when he suggested that they team up to go after Chang: "Don't get any ideas, Mr. Bond." After she picked her own single handcuff (with an earring lock-pick) and attached her cuff to the shower pipe, she stomped off after telling Bond: "Thanks for washing my hair. I work alone."
Bond followed her through the streets to her secret base, a bicycle-repair shop, where she was about to be assaulted by a Jeep full of Asian thugs apparently ordered by General Chang to kill her. With dazzling martial-arts moves against her attackers, she fought them off, and was saved when Bond prevented her from being shot (Bond: "Lucky for you I stopped by"). He persisted: "You still think you can do this alone?" Bond reminded her: "This is about stopping a war." She mentioned that her renegade Security Force had discovered that General Chang had been stealing stealth material from one of his own bases in the last year. Bond realized that Carver had used the "stealth materials" to construct a Stealth boat ("That's the only way they could get close to the Devonshire"), using it to sink the frigate and steal one of its nuclear cruise missiles. Carver was next planning to position his Stealth boat near the British fleet, and fire the missile into China. That would instigate a Third World War when China retaliated ("And Carver will provide the pictures"). Bond's and Wai Lin's plan was to warn both of their governments, while they searched for the Stealth boat's location. She then revealed the complex, high-tech communications and weapons-supply depot that was hidden in the bike shop (Bond: "It's just like home"). From the safe-house, they began to track the location of the Stealth boat, invisible to radar (but not to the naked eye), as Bond was introduced to her many lethal weapons and gadgets, many of which were displayed behind sliding walls. She knocked out one of the revived attackers with an ejector seat. After they deduced that the boat might be in secluded Ha Long Bay (controlled by General Chang), they sent messages to warn their respective governments and then set out for the bay in a Chinese junk, towing a Zodiac raft. He complimented her on working with him - using her words, "You found the right decadent, corrupt Western agent as a partner."
As night fell during their search in the Zodiac after they were dropped off, they located the state-of-the-art Stealth ship in the last cove of the bay. They pulled under the armored, dark-black ship, boarded it and set limpet explosives to detonate in 10 minutes, designed to expose it to radar (and detection) ("Even if it doesn't sink, it'll show up on radar. Our fleets will finish the job"). In the meantime, Carver was in position between the British (HMS Bedford) and Chinese fleets, poised to fire one missile at the flagship of each fleet - to cause them to war against each other ("And the media will provide cool, objective coverage. Let the mayhem begin"). Fortunately, the two ships zig-zagged at high speed to avoid the missiles, which exploded harmlessly in the water. However, Chinese MIGs were poised to "save face" and scrambled to attack the British fleet, while the HMS Bedford's Admiral ordered the launch of a harpoon missile as a warning shot. Wai Lin was detected by video security surveillance and seized by Stamper. Bond knifed and killed one of the guards (# 12 death, # 10 Bond kill), and then faked his own death by pushing the corpse into Stamper's machine-gun fire, as he entered the ship and pursued after hostage Wai Lin to rescue her. The limpet mines were cleared as Wai Lin was brought before Carver, who gloated over Bond's 'death'.
In London, M had received Bond's communique and alerted the fleet to search for a ship "almost invisible" to radar: "The Chinese aren't the enemy. Carver's been playing both sides for fools." Carver continued to boast to Wai Lin about his "launch of a new world order" in nine minutes time. Once the Chinese MIGs had attacked the British fleet, he was planning to retaliate (for the British) by launching his major nuclear missile (stolen from the HMS Devonshire) into Beijing where General Chang was calling an emergency meeting of the Chinese high command. It was orchestrated for Chang to arrive just after the missile killed the Chinese leaders and too late to stop the Chinese Airforce from sinking the entire British fleet. Chang would take over the government, negotiate a truce, and emerge as a world leader with the Nobel Peace Prize. Carver would procure exclusive media broadcasting rights in China for 100 years.
Bond contacted Carver by radio as he held a gun to the head of Gupta, and he bargained to trade Gupta for Wai Lin. In the stand-off, Bond accused Carver of "starting a war for ratings" -- and shot one of the guards sneaking up on him (# 13 death, # 11 Bond kill). When Gupta told Carver the missile was a button's-push away from firing, Carver shot him dead ("It seems you've outlived your contract") (# 14 death). Through his Omega watch equipped with a remote-controlled detonator, Bond began to set off the explosives he had placed around the interior of the ship - the pin was released from a grenade hidden amongst some volatile barrels. During the chaos, Bond fired a machine-gun to make his escape (number of deaths unknown) and met up with Wai Lin - the ship's hull was breached and it became detectable on radar to the British fleet, which was advancing and closing in.
Wai Lin and Bond both continued to wreak havoc onboard - she killed a guard with a sharp edged disc (taken from the sole of her boot) thrown into his neck (# 15 death), and a second guard was killed by Bond (# 16 death, # 12 Bond kill) to protect her. She disabled the ship's engines to make it a 'sitting duck' after killing a few guards (# 17-18 deaths), while Bond killed many more guards as he took control of a rocket launcher (number of deaths unknown). Eventually, Bond was pitted in a running gun-fight against Stamper, when the British fleet scored a direct hit upon the Stealth ship, forcing the crew to abandon the vessel (number of deaths unknown). Bond was injured in the massive blast and appeared to be burned alive when Stamper ignited gases around him, but he had survived. With only three minutes until the scheduled launch of the missile on Beijing, Stamper captured Wai Lin again. Bond took over the control room after murdering two technicians (# 19-20 deaths, # 13-14 Bond kills), but was taken prisoner by Carver. Now with only two minutes left in the countdown, Carver continued to express confidence about his escape aboard a news helicopter while the fleet would destroy evidence of his wrong-doing. Bond took charge, taunted Carver ("I may have some breaking news for you, Elliot...You forgot the first rule of mass media, Elliot: Give the people what they want!") and threw him into the activated Sea Drill where he was chewed up in its mechanism - a victim of his own technology (# 21 death, # 15 Bond kill). Bond then fought to save Wai Lin when she was chained and lowered into the sea by Stamper. He fought against the blonde brute who threatened: "I owe you an unpleasant death, Mr. Bond" - Bond stabbed him in the arm and chest, trapped his foot with the heavy missile firing mechanism, and then cut off his own zippered vest to release himself into the sea. He shared air with Wai Lin by kissing her as the booby-trapped missile detonated and exploded onboard the Stealth above them, obliterating the ship (# 22 death, # 16 Bond kill, and unknown numbers of others).
They climbed up onto the flaming wreckage of the ship. In London, M dictated to Moneypenny a news release about Carver's death: "Elliot Carver is missing, presumed drowned while on a cruise aboard his luxury yacht in the South China Sea. At present, the local authorities believe the media mogul committed suicide." Meanwhile, the HMS Bedford searched for Commander Bond and Wai Lin, but the two ignored its "Are you there?" requests. Bond proposed that for the meantime: "Let's stay under cover" - and they kissed (# 3 tryst).
Film Notables (Awards, Facts, etc.)
The 18th film in the series. The second (of four) films starring Pierce Brosnan as James Bond.
This was the only Bond film directed by Canadian Roger Spottiswoode.
Although the film was originally scheduled to be shot, in part, in Vietnam, the location was moved to Bangkok, Thailand (substituting for Saigon).
The film was not referencing any Ian Fleming story or material, although an earlier expanded version of the script was novelized by Raymond Benson.
It was the first film in cinematic history to be entirely financed by advertisement endorsements from its sponsors. In the largest product-placement deal ever in film history, the film was largely marketed through the film's promotional partners and sponsoring companies, including BMW, Ericsson cellphones, Bollinger champagne, Omega watches, Dunhill, Brioni clothing, Avis rental cars, Golden Wonder potato chips, L'Oréal cosmetics, VISA and Heineken beer, which paid over $100 million. Some joked that the Bond films had now become the "Licence to Sell."
The title of the film was not expressly mentioned anywhere in the film, although villain Carver's newspaper was named Tomorrow.
Bit player Julian Fellowes (the future creator of the Downton Abbey series), played the part of the UK's Defense Minister.
With a production budget of $110 million, and gross revenue of $125 million (domestic) and $333 million (worldwide). The film opened against James Cameron's Titanic (1997), causing it to be the first (and only) Brosnan Bond film to not open as the #1 film at the box-office.
Set-pieces: the pre-title credits sequence including the jet-fighter skirmish, the Stealth Ship attack on the HMS Devonshire, the shoot-out escape from Carver's printing press complex, the subsequent car chase through the underground parking garage in Hamburg, Germany, the spectacular motorcycle escape-pursuit sequence with Wai Lin in Saigon, and the final Stealth Ship gunfight conflict ending with Carver's death from the Sea Drill device and Wai Lin's rescue.
Bond Villains: Henry Gupta (Ricky Jay), Stamper (Gotz Otto), Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce), Dr. Kaufman (Vincent Schiavelli), General Chang (Philip Kwok)
Bond Girls: Professor Inga Bergstrom (Cecilie Thomsen), Paris Carver (Teri Hatcher), Colonel Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh)
Number of Love-Making Encounters: 3
Film Locales: Terrorist Arms Bazaar near Russian border, London, England, various locations around South China Sea (and Ha Long Bay), Hamburg, Germany, Oxford, England, Okinawa, Japan, Saigon, Vietnam
Gadgets: GPS tracking encoder, video camera uplink, cigarette lighter grenade, Ericsson mobile phone (with fingerprint scanner with capability to remotely drive BMW 750iL with cellphone's CCTV monitor - activated by tapping twice on the touch-pad, a detachable antenna lock pick and electrical discharge stun-gun weapon (activated by pressing recall-3-send on the cellphone keypad)), Wai Lin's wrist harpoon-device to fire a climbing rope and piton to walk vertically down a wall, Chakra torture "toys," Wai Lin's earring lock pick, gadgets in Wai Lin's Saigon safe-house office (sliding walls reveal a display of lethal weapons, computerized maps on monitor, flame-throwing dragon statue, ejector seat, Omega Seamaster dive watch with remote-controlled detonator, dart-launching fan), new and deadly Walther P99 (with 16 rounds), boot knife (Gerber Mark 1), Wai Lin's sharp-bladed disk
Vehicles: HMS Devonshire, Carver's black armor-plated catamaran-style Stealth Ship, two Chinese J-7 jet fighters, 4-door silver BMW 750iL (remote-controlled driving capability with Ericsson cell phone via CCTV monitor, with machine guns, a female-vocal warning system, hidden fingerprint-activated safe in glove compartment, an anti-car-jacking security system with 20,000 volt shock, tear-gas deployment mechanism, rockets hidden in sun-roof, metal-spike dispenser from rear bumper to shred tires, reinflatable tires, a retractable chain-cable cutter from the hood ornament, bullet-proof glass and body, magnetic flash grenades, etc.), BMW R1200 (1170cc) cruiser motorcycle, Range Rovers, Jeep Cherokee, Chinese junk, Zodiac raft
Number of Deaths (Bond Kills): 22 (16)
Bond Regular: M
Colonel Wai Lin
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