Filmsite Movie Review
Goldfinger (1964)
Pages: (1) (2) (3)
Plot Synopsis (continued)

Golfing with Goldfinger:

Bond tracked Goldfinger to a golf country club in Kent, England (Stoke Poges Golf Club in Buckinghamshire, England), later revealed to be Goldfinger's own club. The two met inside the club's golf shop managed by Blacking (Victor Brooks). Both of their distinctive cars were parked outside - Goldfinger's gold-colored and black 1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III (license plate AU1), and Bond's gray Aston-Martin.

Goldfinger entered the shop wearing a brown coat jacket over a buttoned yellow vest, with a brown tie, brown golfing pants and shoes, and a matching brown cap. Blacking suggested that Goldfinger play against an old club member with the same handicap - Bond, who was perusing through golf bags inside the shop. Goldfinger studiously stared at Bond, but accepted his challenge to play a wagered game of golf - at a shilling a hole. Hawker (Gerry Duggan) would serve as Bond's caddy - and Oddjob would be Goldfinger's Korean assistant ("He's an admirable manservant, but mute. He's not a very good caddy").

[Note: The prominent featuring of gold and yellow-colored objects in the film could also be extended to the Korean Oddjob (and to Goldfinger's many other Korean henchmen), whose skin color was referred to by Bond as "yellow" or "yellow-faced" in the original Fleming novel.]

During the game at the 16th hole putting green, Goldfinger revealed his suspicions about Bond: "This meeting is not a coincidence, eh? What's your game, Mr. Bond?...You didn't come here to play golf." As Goldfinger was about to putt, Bond dropped the 1940s Nazi gold bar onto the green near the hole with a distinct thud - the sight of the glistening gold bar disrupted Goldfinger's aim and he missed his putt. As they strolled to the next hole, the gold-obsessed Goldfinger identified the rare example of Nazi gold bullion: "A 1940's smelt from the Weigenhaler foundry at Essen...They vanished in 1944." Bond claimed he had access to more gold bars from the same source.

At the 17th hole before they teed up, Bond agreed that he was offering the gold bar (or its cash equivalent of 5,000 pounds) to increase the betting stakes - but only if Goldfinger won the final two holes - to be played with "strict rules."

During play (the first half of the challenge at the 17th hole), Bond hit a decent shot down the middle of the fairway, but Goldfinger's first shot (with a Slazenger 1 golf ball) bounced into the rough near a grove of trees. A futile search for the ball (of almost five minutes) threatened to penalize Goldfinger's play ("The lost ball will cost you stroke and distance"). Oddjob helped Goldfinger to cheat by planting a ball at the edge of the rough (through his trouser leg) to enable him to continue without a penalty. Hawker suspected deception: "If that's his original ball, I'm Arnold Palmer!" - as Bond revealed that his foot was covering up Goldfinger's original Slazenger 1 ball. Bond's plan was to switch golf balls on his cheating opponent to outfox him, by replacing Goldfinger's # 1 ball with a Slazenger # 7 golf ball that he had found on the course. After play was completed on the 17th green, Bond - with sleight of hand, cleverly made the swap.

On the final 18th hole, Goldfinger succeeded in winning the entire two-hole match with five strokes ("Down in five") when Bond missed his putt. It appeared that Goldfinger had won their challenge - until Bond pointed out that Goldfinger had played the wrong ball. Therefore, Bond won the 18th hole and match ("You must've played the wrong ball somewhere on the 18th fairway. We are playing strict rules, so I'm afraid you lose the hole and the match").

After being defeated, Goldfinger was spiteful that he had lost. As Oddjob packed Goldfinger's golf bag into the open trunk of his Rolls-Royce, Bond also secretly planted his primed larger homing device there, to track his whereabouts. Goldfinger threatened that Bond never again interfere further in his business affairs:

You are a clever, resourceful man, Mr. Bond...Perhaps too clever. Twice our paths have crossed. Let's leave it at that. I should think our first meeting would have convinced you.

To "remind" Bond of his serious intentions, Goldfinger instructed Oddjob to demonstrate his awesome, lethal blade-rimmed bowler hat - his favorite weapon. His Korean manservant removed his hat and cleanly decapitated a nearby Greek marble statue's female head. Goldfinger settled up the financial wager by writing a check for 5,000 pounds to Bond. As Oddjob slipped into the driver's seat to chauffeur Goldfinger away, Bond tossed a golf-ball to him ("I believe this is yours") - Goldfinger's original golf ball. Oddjob retaliated by squeezing the ball with his fist until it crumbled into pieces. As the Rolls Royce pulled away, Bond traced their progress through his Aston-Martin's AV dashboard-console (a primitive GPS system).

At the South End airport, a large hoist picked up the Rolls-Royce and loaded it into the immense hatch of a British United Airfarers Carvair cargo plane. A baggage handler drove by hauling a luggage cart holding four suitcases - Goldfinger's belongings (one was gold-colored). Flight # 400 was departing shortly for Geneva, Switzerland. Nearby, Bond was notified by a Security Officer (Terence Brook) that he was booked on a flight to Geneva in a half an hour.

Tracking Goldfinger to His Smelting Factory in Switzerland:

After a dissolve, Goldfinger's car was viewed as it left Geneva and climbed a mountainous road into the Swiss countryside - with Bond following not far behind. However, behind Bond's Aston-Martin was a third car - a light yellow Ford Mustang convertible (with a red leather interior). The pretty but impatient blonde female driver, after honking her horn at Bond, passed him on the winding road. He was tempted to speed up and follow the car, but then reconsidered ("Discipline, 007" - he said to himself). Meanwhile, Goldfinger's Rolls-Royce was determined to be motionless - it was parked at a roadside vendor selling fruit, located on the edge of a mountainous switch-back curve in the descending road. From a vantage point higher up, Bond parked his car and observed them below. Standing in the foreground, he was almost struck by sniper fire - aimed at Goldfinger from a roadside curb even higher up. As the camera pulled back, it was revealed that the female in the Mustang was attempting an assassination - she was crouched in front of a rock wall-boulder and bracing her AR-7 rifle (.22 caliber) as she fired.

Bond was determined to pursue the assassin - as she descended the hairpin road, he raced behind her and engaged in a cat-mouse driving challenge against her. As they zoomed by the vendor's location, Bond sped ahead of the female's car to block her pursuit of Goldfinger's car and not allow her to pass, as she angrily honked her horn at him. When he finally signaled for her to pull alongside his car, he deployed a telescoping hubcap-wheel device from his Aston-Martin DB5 to shred both her front and rear tires and lower rocker panels, and she was forced off the road, but uninjured.

[Note: The tire-shredding mechanism was inspired by similar scythed chariots in Ben-Hur (1959).]

When Bond stopped his car to assist her, he told her: "You know, you're lucky to be alive." Although she was angered that he hadn't allowed her space to pass, she was unaware that he had sabotaged her car ("A double blow-out!"). He also complimented her: "I'm so glad that it's only the car and not you. You don't look like the sort of girl who should be ditched."

When she asked for transport to a nearby auto garage to arrange for repairs, he agreed to help and reached for her wooden attache case in the back seat. She suspiciously said her name was Tilly Soames (Tania Mallet) although her case was initialed T.M. Bond queried: "Here for the hunting season?" - hinting that he knew she had concealed her gun in the wooden case. She falsely claimed that the case contained her ice skates, although it was summer-time. They drove into a VW auto-repair garage/gas station where she was told the repair would take 24 hours to order new tires. She informed Bond that she would stay in a nearby hotel in the meantime - and then she refused any further help and asserted that she could take care of herself.

After dropping her off, Bond resumed his tracking of Goldfinger - the homing device located him at the factory buildings of Auric Enterprises (A.C.) - set in a flat valley at the foot of a steep, wooded hill-side. Later that day, Bond engaged in reconnaissance in the forested hill behind and above the plant. From a distance, he spied upon the factory through a large pair of binoculars. He observed that Goldfinger's Rolls-Royce was parked in front of one of the buildings.

Following a dissolve, it was now night-time and Bond was disguised in all-black. Wearing a backpack, he surreptitiously descended the hillside down to the factory, and stealthily avoided two blue-jumpsuited guards (with yellow waist-sashes) who were speaking Korean to each other. A sign read: "ENTRITT STRENGSTENS VERBOTEN" (Entrance Strictly Forbidden). Finding his escape route blocked by a dead-end, he ascended a fire-escape ladder up the side of the building. From a ledge, he tilted louvred windows to peer into the interior of the metallurgical factory. He watched in amazement as Goldfinger's Rolls Royce was dismantled - first one of the vehicle's golden doors, and then one of the golden headlights. He listened to a conversation between Goldfinger and an unidentified Chinese associate, later identified as Mr. Ling (Burt Kwouk) who was wearing a Mao jacket - they were talking about the disassembly of the car.

Goldfinger explained how parts of the car's bodywork, solid 18 karat gold, were being smelted down into ingot molds. This was clear evidence of his illegal means of smuggling gold. The vehicle was being used to transport Auric's gold by recasting all of the car's body parts in gold and shipping them from place to place. Parts of his explanation were drowned out by factory noises:

Goldfinger: Smuggling is an art, Mr. Ling. And art requires.... In this case, the bodywork of my Rolls Royce is eighteen carat gold...We dismantle it here. We reduce the gold in this special furnace into ingots, which in turn, will weigh approximately two tons in bullion. I make six trips a year to the continent in the Rolls Royce, Mr. Ling.
Mr. Ling: It would be wiser to suspend your other activities.
Goldfinger: Now, Mr. Ling, please assure your principals 'Operation Grand Slam' will have my undivided attention.

Goldfinger's fleeting mention of 'Operation Grand Slam' hinted at some wider plan or deadly objective.

The Failed Revenge of Tilly - Jill's Sister:

As Bond fled from the factory back into the forested hillside, he heard a twig snap and spotted a dark-hooded figure in the woods wielding a rifle (with a telescopic sight) and setting up for another assassination attempt. He foiled the sniper's fire to kill Goldfinger a second time by wrestling the assassin, but in the process, an alarm wire was accidentally tripped by the barrel of the rifle.

They wrestled together and soon he discovered it was Tilly again - who now admitted vengefully that she was Tilly Masterson (initials T.M.), Jill's sister. She asserted: "I want to kill him....Goldfinger...I want him dead. He killed my sister." With a number of security guards (in Mercedes-Benzs) approaching their location with heavy gunfire, they fled to Bond's Aston-Martin DB5. Bond grabbed one guard from behind and smashed his head against one of the Mercedes. They both were able to escape in Bond's car, as three of the Korean thugs gave chase after them in the first Mercedes. By activating some of the car's defensive weapons systems, Bond was able to dispatch with several of the guards:

  • the smoke screen caused the first Mercedes speeding after them to crash into a tree
  • the oil slick forced the second Mercedes (with four occupants) to drive off a steep incline - the vehicle exploded as it careened downward and crashed into one of the factory walls below

Bond stopped his car and deployed the deflective, bullet-proof rear armor plate to protect against bullets coming from the third Mercedes following closely behind him. He emerged from his parked car, shot one of the henchmen dead, and continued firing (using his door as a shield) during an extended gun battle. As Tilly ran for cover in the woods, Oddjob and other guards pulled up in a fourth Mercedes. She was hit in the neck by Oddjob's hat and instantly killed. Bond ran to her side where he was quickly surrounded and taken prisoner.

Bond's Capture and Torture by Goldfinger:

Although he was seized, Bond was allowed to drive his own car back to Goldfinger's high-security factory compound. His vehicle was led in a caravan surrounded by the guards' vehicles. After passing through a gatehouse and barricade manned by an old Swiss woman (Varley Thomas), he suddenly took off in a different direction and activated the ejector seat button, propelling his Korean guard-passenger into the air. At the start of a frantic car chase, he then sped away through the many alleyways within the factory's enclosure while firing his vehicle's machine guns and evading enemy gunfire (including the Swiss woman with a machine-gun!). Eventually, he was fooled by a giant mirror placed directly in his path at one of the intersections - it blinded him by reflecting his own headlights. He crashed into the side of one of the factory buildings and was knocked unconscious. He was apprehended by a grinning Oddjob, who seemed pleased with himself that his trick had enabled Bond's ultimate capture.

When Bond awoke in darkness, he was tied down by his arms and legs, and spread-eagled on a gold-covered metal table, ready to be tortured. The villainous, gloating Goldfinger descended a few stairs from a nearby control room. He was wearing a brown dinner jacket with a gold lapel, a shirt with gold buttons and a black bow-tie. He expressed some praise for Bond's "interesting car," but then bragged about his own industrial laser gun with a destructive red beam of light:

I, too, have a new toy but considerably more practical. You are looking at an industrial laser which emits an extraordinary light not to be found in nature. It can project a spot on the moon -- or, at closer range, cut through solid metal. I will show you.

With a click of his fingers in the direction of the control room, Goldfinger ordered the activation of a giant laser mounted above the table. The laser gun (with large glowing blue coils) moved down the table until its beam was directed between Bond's legs.

[Note: It was the equivalent of the 'mythical' non-existent scene of Pearl White in the silent The Perils of Pauline (1914) serial threatened by a sawmill buzzsaw. In the original Ian Fleming novel, Bond was actually threatened to be cut in half by a circular saw, not a laser beam.]

Goldfinger proudly demonstrated the industrial laser beam's cutting power by inching it slowly up towards Bond's crotch to castrate him - and to split him in half. The laser beam started to slice through the outer edge of the gold tabletop, as he continued to pontificate: "This is gold, Mr. Bond. All my life I've been in love with its color, its brilliance, its divine heaviness. I welcome any enterprise that will increase my stock, which is considerable....The purpose of our two previous encounters is now very clear to me. I do not intend to be distracted by another. Good-night, Mr. Bond."

The next exchange between them during the tense scene was memorable - Bond's quick wit allowed him to survive another day:

Bond: Do you expect me to talk?
Goldfinger: No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die! There is nothing you can talk to me about that I don't already know. (He retreated to the control room to speak to Mr. Ling)
Bond: You're forgetting one thing! If I fail to report, 008 replaces me!
Goldfinger: I trust he will be more successful!
Bond: Well, he knows what I know!
Goldfinger: You know nothing, Mr. Bond!
Bond: Operation Grand-Slam, for instance!
Goldfinger (after considerable thought): Two words you may have overheard which cannot possibly have any significance to you or anyone in your organization.
Bond: Can you afford to take that chance?
Goldfinger (after snapping his fingers to deactivate the laser gun): You are quite right, Mr. Bond. You are worth more to me alive.

Goldfinger's white-coated henchman Mr. Kisch (Michael Mellinger) approached and shot Bond point-blank in the chest with a tranquilizer gun. As Bond slumped backward, the scene faded to black.

The Introduction of Pussy Galore - On a Flight to Baltimore:

Bond revived again and found himself on Goldfinger's Lockheed Jet-Star plane enroute from Geneva, Switzerland. The route took him 35,000 feet above and south-west of Newfoundland as it made its way to Baltimore - enroute to Kentucky and Goldfinger's stud farm (near Ft. Knox). Above him stood Goldfinger's "personal pilot" and blonde henchwoman Pussy Galore (Honor Blackman), wearing a low-cut shiny metallic gold blouse covered by a black jacket. Bond's first view of her was fuzzy and out-of-focus. She introduced herself, purring with a straight face and looking down on him:

Pussy: My name is Pussy Galore.
Bond: I must be dreaming.

Though he expected to "wake up dead," Pussy told him that he had been knocked out with a tranquilizer gun - she held up the weapon.

He was offered a drink from Asian stewardess Mei-Lei (Mai Ling) (uniformed in a shiny, middle-buttoned, metallic gold top with a bare midriff, high neck and long sleeves, and a gold-accented sarong), and he ordered his standard drink preference:

A martini, shaken not stirred.

Bond's drink was served in a gold-colored crystal glass. When Bond turned on the charm and quipped: "This should be a memorable flight," Pussy emphasized that she was lesbian-leaning - and therefore "immune" to his come-on. She was flying the plane with a dark-haired, female co-pilot named Sydney (Tricia Muller) (with a gold sunburst pin on her uniform), and via microphone announced that they would be arriving in Baltimore in 55 minutes.

Bond inquired with Mei-Lei about changing his clothes before landing, and learned that although one piece of luggage had survived, his black attache case (with his weapon) had been damaged. In the plane's sole rest-room at the rear of the plane, as Bond prepared to change into a gray suit (with vest) and black tie, Mei-Lei vainly attempted to keep an eye on him through a peephole (hidden in the wall clock) but he prevented her from viewing. A second peephole behind a see-thru cabinet mirror was also blocked. From his shaving kit, he removed his razor, unscrewed the bottom, and removed the miniature homing device hidden in the handle. After activating the device, he placed it into a slotted compartment in the heel of his shoe - to alert MI6 to his new whereabouts. While preparing to shave in front of the cabinet, he squirted some thick white shaving cream on the mirror to again thwart Mei Lei's peeping.

As they were about to land, Pussy threatened him a gun: "Do you want to play it easy or the hard way? And this isn't a tranquilizer." He reprimanded her with an expository response - a lesson on not firing a weapon in a pressurized jet plane:

Bond: Uh, Pussy, you know a lot more about planes than guns. That's a Smith and Wesson .45. If you fire it at this close range, the bullet will pass through me and the fuselage like a blow-torch through butter. The cabin will depressurize and we'll both be sucked into outer space together. (He sat in a swivel chair) But if that's how you want to enter the United States, you're welcome. As for me -- I, uh, prefer the easier way.
Pussy: That's very sensible.

To end the conversation, she rubbed the barrel of the gun on Bond's smoothly-shaved face and noted: "You like close shaves, don't you?"

MI6's Tracking of Bond:

Miss Moneypenny alerted "M" to a phone call on his "green scrambler" from Felix Leiter, who was calling on a white phone from his office near the White House. He reported on Bond's latest whereabouts after leaving Switzerland:

It's about 007, sir. We picked up his homer signal. It's monitored into Friendship Airport, Baltimore, where he's just landed....He came in on a private jet ex Geneva, registered to our old friend Auric Goldfinger....Their flight plan gives Blue Grass Field, Kentucky as their final destination.

Pussy Galore's Flying Circus:

The Auric Enterprises, Inc. jet, with bold gold lettering on its fuselage, landed at its final destination, the Blue Grass Air Field, and entered a hanger with a banner: "Pussy Galore's Flying Circus." The first to deplane, Mei Lei spoke to two Korean attendants (with blue jump-suit uniforms and yellow sashes). A small squadron of five red and white single-engine Piper planes in the "Flying Circus" were seen flying overhead in a V-formation. When Pussy, who was holding a revolver on Bond, bragged about having trained the female troupe of "talented chaps," Bond complimented her:

You're a woman of many parts, Pussy.

He then invited her to have dinner with him ("I believe that the bourbon and branch water's rather splendid here in Kentucky. Well, now that we're both off duty, perhaps -- "), but he was interrupted by the sudden appearance of Oddjob standing next to a red 1964 Ford Country Squire station wagon with two Koreans in the third-row seat. When Bond was ordered into the station wagon's second-row seat by Oddjob, he took the opportunity to insult him: "Manners, Oddjob. I thought you always took your hat off to a lady." He then spoke to Pussy: "You know, he kills little girls like you." She replied: "Little boys, too." As Oddjob pulled away, behind the station wagon was a blue 1964 Ford Falcon Ranchero pick-up truck, to be used to transport Mei Lei, the luggage, and some of the Koreans.

Pussy watched admiringly as the five-person, aerial troupe came in for a landing - she was soon surrounded by five gorgeous, blond-haired pilots, each uniformed in a tight-fitting, military-styled black jumpsuit with a white waistband, white boots, and a gold starburst on the left chest:

[Note: Credits listed eight pilots in the Flying Circus aviator team, although there were only five seen at one time on-screen. This was because there were two different shoots in May and July of 1964 involving the female pilots. Between the two shoots, three of the five were replaced (*).]

  • Original Cast of Five Pilots (in May):
    • Flying Circus Squadron Leader Denise (Aleta Morrison)
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Maggie Wright)
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Jane Holland) *
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Jane Murdoch) *
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Maise Farrell) *
  • Three Pilot Replacements (by July)
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Caron Gardner)
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Lesley Langley)
    • Flying Circus Pilot (Marian Collins)

Pussy was pleased with their "dress rehearsal" and mentioned that they would receive their "final briefing" that evening.

At Goldfinger's Stud Ranch in Kentucky:

Bond was transported to Goldfinger's Kentucky "Stud Farm" base. After driving through the entrance gate, there were views of jockeys harness-racing on a track. The vehicle drove up to the two-story plantation house with white columns and outdoor porches on both levels. Goldfinger was standing outside his headquarters, wearing a gold cap, brown coat-jacket and yellow vest with gold buttons. Bond insulted him regarding his breeding compared to the race animals: "Certainly better bred than the owner." Bond was ordered to be incarcerated in his "quarters" - a basement dungeon cell sealed by a heavy metal door. Only a small ceiling opening with metal bars offered some sunlight.

Bond's location, via the homer device in his shoe's heel, was followed on a tracking screen on the dashboard of Felix Leiter's white 1964 Ford Thunderbird convertible (with a black top), parked at a Kentucky Fried Chicken in the nearby town. With Leiter, CIA agent Johnny (Peter Cranwell) was monitoring the screen. They both decided: "He'll shout if he needs us."

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