Filmsite Movie Review
Goldfinger (1964)
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The Story (continued)

Goldfinger's Meeting with Gangster Associates:

Meanwhile, Goldfinger was notified in his office (lined with gold trophies) by Mr. Kisch that a meeting was being assembled in his wood-paneled Rumpus Game Room, outfitted with a pool table. Goldfinger proceeded to join the group, composed of several organized crime associates, including twelve gangsters or "hoods" from various syndicates located all over the US, including New York, Chicago, and the West Coast:

On an Elevated Platform
Chancer (Norman Chancer)
Maxim (John Maxim)
Laurence (Laurence Herder)
Brand (Roland Brand)
Playing Pool
Brandon (Bill Brandon)
Edwards (Bill Edwards)
Mr. Strap (Hal Galili)
At a Bar
McCarthy (John McCarthy)
Rabin (Lenny Rabin)
Jed Midnight
Playing with a Wooden Horse
Hurndell (William Hurndell)

An 13th individual, an American mafia crime boss named Mr. Solo (Martin Benson), wearing a black suit, was pacing in front of them while smoking a pipe. The group of crime figures had been assembled from rival groups causing some discomfort amongst them. Solo was particularly upset to associate with other low-life hoods: "Now I find I'm attending a hoods' convention!" Each of the mob bosses (of the various geographical groups) demanded payment for contracted deliveries they had made to Goldfinger for his operation - in exchange for a promised $1 million dollars (in gold bullion). Goldfinger offered them an even better deal: "Gentlemen, you can have the million today...or ten millions tomorrow!" - via withdrawals from his "bank" (Fort Knox).

With a trick pool table that revolved counter-clockwise (as its table-top inverted), Goldfinger displayed a control console. He turned three white switches that produced a humming noise that caused nervous concern amongst the gangsters. However, he had only:

  • lowered wood panels over the exterior windows and momentarily turned off the lights
  • revealed a large black and white wall photograph - an aerial view of the Gold Depository at Fort Knox

He grabbed a pool cue to point out the location of his "bank" on the aerial image, as he described his 'Operation Grand Slam' plan - allegedly to rob the facility that held $15 billion dollars - the entire gold reserve supply of the US:

This is my bank. The gold depository at Fort Knox, gentlemen. In its vaults are $15 billion dollars -- the entire gold supply of the United States.

The gangsters scoffed at Goldfinger's outrageous and daring plan to "knock off" Ft. Knox, heavily fortified by the US military:

  • Strap: "Knock off Fort Knox?!"
  • Laurence: "Got a key or somethin'?"
  • Solo: "There are thirty-five thousand troops stationed around there."

Goldfinger corrected Solo: "Forty-one thousand." He also manipulated the console's dials a second time, causing the bar to swivel around into a new position. He also retracted the center of the floor and revealed in a hidden opening an emerging small-scale miniature replica-model of Fort Knox. He continued his explanation:

Man has climbed Mount Everest. Gone to the bottom of the ocean. He has fired rockets to the moon. Split the atom. Achieved miracles in every field of human endeavor -- EXCEPT CRIME!...The underworld will rock with applause for centuries.

Meanwhile, Bond escaped from his holding cell by luring the single Korean guard to open the locked metal door, while he hid up in the cell's rafters, jumped down onto the armed guard, and subdued him. After walking down a corridor, Bond found himself standing under the hydraulic replica-model, where he overheard Goldfinger explain his "foolproof" plan - the following day - to somehow infiltrate the impregnable bank structure. Bond took notes as he listened to the presentation of Goldfinger's detailed plan. The gangsters continued to mock Goldfinger's operation:

  • Midnight: "Cut the commercial."
  • Mr. Strap: "Yeah, get to the point!"
  • Solo: "You're wasting my time, Goldfinger. The depository is impregnable."
  • Mr. Strap: "Look, the joint is bomb-proof, electrified, lousy with machine guns, tear gas..."

Goldfinger became exasperated:

Bear with me, please! Fort Knox is a bank, like any other. Larger, better protected perhaps, but nonetheless a bank! It can be, I think the expression is, blown. My plan is foolproof, gentlemen.

He explained how his plan involved using lethal (but invisible) Delta 9 nerve gas, smuggled in from Canada and supplied by the gangsters, to be sprayed from gold canisters over Fort Knox (via Pussy Galore's Flying Circus planes), to pacify or immobilize the troops stationed there and induce "complete unconsciousness for 24 hours." The five Piper planes would spray the aerial nerve gas prior to the dawn raid. The electrical entry gate-fence surrounding Fort Knox Depository would be dynamited before a task force attacked and broke into the Depository itself, entered the sealed gold vault and allowed access to the immense stash of stored gold bullion:

I call it Operation Grand Slam. I have devoted 15 years of my life to it. Every detail has been scrupulously prepared. Every eventuality has been considered. We'll operate on a split-second schedule. Your organization, Mr. Midnight, brought in a consignment of these canisters across the Canadian border. They contain Delta Nine....An invisible nerve gas which disperses fifteen minutes after inducing complete unconsciousness for twenty-four hours! Tomorrow at dawn, the Flying Circus of my personal pilot, Miss Pussy Galore, will spray it into the atmosphere! Once the population, including the military, has been immobilized, my task force, which Mr. Strap and his people smuggled across the Rio Grande from Mexico, will approach Fort Knox in motorized equipment along Bullion Boulevard - which runs past the depository here, and intersects with Gold Vault Road. This fence surrounding the depository, as Mr. Strap reminded us, is electrified. It will be dynamited. My task force will then move to the main entrance and demolish it...All that will then remain is to descend to the vaults where the bullion is stored.

Disgruntled hoodlum Mr. Solo wanted his $1 million immediately ("I've heard enough. If you have no objection, I'll take my money now"). Goldfinger was agreeable and led Solo away, while the others waited and anticipated Goldfinger's further explanation of how the bullion would be removed. Bond had written a brief note summarizing the plan: ""007 to CIA AERIAL NERVE GAS PRECEDES DAWN RAID FORT KNOX TOMORROW." Bond wrapped the note around the small homing device removed from his shoe heel, and then pocketed it. Suddenly, Bond's feet were yanked out from under him, and he fell on his face. He was thrown against a wall, and was amazed when he turned around that he had been assaulted, apprehended and discovered by Pussy Galore herself - with two other Korean henchman. He quipped: "Pussy! Well, who taught you judo?...We must have a few fast falls together sometime" - while being disarmed and led away.

In another area beneath the model, Goldfinger's henchman Mr. Kisch spied upon the gangsters via two closed-circuit TVs. Then, after placing a gas mask on his face, he activated a switch - to seal up the Rumpus Room's firepit opening and to completely close-up and seal the room, before releasing deadly Delta Nine nerve gas from four canisters. Accompanied by a loud hissing noise, all of them passed out and were presumably killed.

Mr. Solo's Fate:

Outside the stud farm plantation house, a Korean henchman loaded gold bullion bars into the trunk of a black, 1964 Lincoln Continental 4-door sedan - the payoff of $1 million for sole dissenting New York gangster Mr. Solo. The mobster was escorted by Goldfinger to the vehicle, as Pussy led Bond back to imprisonment. They spoke briefly before he was to be reimprisoned. Goldfinger claimed he had a "pressing engagement" - a prophetic pun, while Bond joked: "When you gotta go, you gotta go" as he covertly placed his note in Solo's pocket - to alert the CIA. Bond informed Goldfinger that he had heard the entire 'Operation Grand Slam' briefing.

The vehicle was driven by chauffeur Oddjob, presumably toward the airport with "excess baggage" (the gold bullion pay-off). Johnny and Felix Leiter were alerted to the movement of the homing device (in Solo's pocket), and engaged in a close pursuit in their white Thunderbird - falsely thinking that Bond was in the car.

During the drive, Oddjob deliberately bypassed the entry to the "International Airport," and took a side road detour and parked. While sitting in the back seat, Mr. Solo was shot and killed by Oddjob with a silencer gun. Due to the Lincoln Continental's circuitous route, Leiter suspected that Bond was up to his favorite pasttimes: "It's a drink or a dame." Oddjob drove the car to the Atlantic Iron-Metal Company's metal/scrap-iron wrecking yard. The vehicle was parked, grabbed by a giant grasping hook, and deposited in a car-crushing machine - with Solo's body still inside. The squashed, square metal cube was magnetically snagged and dropped into the back of Oddjob's blue 1964, Ford Ranchero pickup. He drove the compacted vehicle back to the Stud Farm. The homing device ceased functioning - to Leiter's consternation. The Thunderbird - now forced to end its pursuit - was passed by Oddjob driving in the opposite direction.

Goldfinger's Revelation About His Fort Knox Plan:

While enjoying mint juleps on the front patio of Goldfinger's plantation estate with Pussy, she described her motivation for being involved in Goldfinger's plan - money. With great wealth, she would retire - not to England - but to an island:

I've spotted a little island in the Bahamas. I'll hang up a sign... No Trespassing, and Go Back to Nature.

Goldfinger was notified by Kisch that two men in a Thunderbird were at the stud farm's entrance, with binoculars aimed toward the race-track. Goldfinger feared one of two alternatives - either they were "touts looking for racing tips," or they were trailing Bond. The 007 agent was summoned from his dungeon cell, and then he instructed Pussy to entertain Bond and make him as happy as possible - for the two interlopers' benefit:

For their benefit, Pussy, let's make him as happy as possible. I suggest you change into something more suitable.

She agreed to comply: "Certainly. Business before pleasure" and rose from the table.

Bond appeared and the two began to discuss his Operation Grand Slam in detail. He immediately claimed that Goldfinger's plan "simply won't work." The agent was "well-informed" about the Delta-9 gas, claiming it was fatal and would uselessly kill 60,000 people. And Bond was skeptical that the gold bars worth $15 billion dollars and weighing 10,500 tons, could easily be transported. It would be logistically impossible and take too long to steal that many bars of gold bullion:

Sixty men would take twelve days to load it onto two hundred trucks. Now, at the most, you're going to have two hours before the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines move in and make you put it back.

Goldfinger stunned Bond with a new revelation - he had duped everyone - he had no plans to actually steal the bars ("Who mentioned anything about removing it?"), but to irradiate the gold bars by activating a small nuclear bomb within the vault area. Goldfinger's Red Chinese compatriot, agent Mr. Ling, who was a specialist in nuclear fission, had perfected and supplied him with a small, radioactive ("dirty") cobalt/iodine atomic bomb device that would be detonated. Bond noted that the nuclear blast in Ft. Knox would make the bars radioactive and inaccessible for 58 years within the facility - and thereby useless.

Bond realized the ramifications of Goldfinger's dastardly, brilliant and "inspired deal" - his tactic would increase the value of the tycoon's own gold (about 10 times) and cause economic chaos in the West, to the delight of his Communist Chinese supporters. The resulting financial meltdown of the US economy would force other nations to buy gold from Goldfinger himself. Goldfinger was coy, though, about where the bomb would be detonated -- if thwarted in his plan, he speculated that he would retaliate by threatening to detonate the bomb in a different random area, such as the Polaris submarine pens at New London, Connecticut, or at Cape Kennedy, or near the White House:

If the authorities should attempt to locate it, who knows where it might be exploded, eh? Perhaps the Polaris submarine pens at New London, Cape Kennedy, near the White House. But we are speculating idly. Operation Grand Slam will be successful. You will be there to see for yourself -- too closely for comfort, I'm afraid.

When Oddjob pulled into the yard, Goldfinger gruesomely described his most immediate task - to extract his gold bars stored in the trunk of the crushed car: "I must arrange to separate my gold from the late Mr. Solo."

Bond Entertained by Pussy Galore:

Pussy Galore emerged in a new outfit - highlighting her bustline with a low-cut purple blouse - and was given the go-ahead by Goldfinger: "Please entertain Mr. Bond for me, Pussy." The two exchanged flirtatious banter with each other:

Pussy: Well, how about it, handsome? Don't you think it's time we got to know each other socially?
Bond: Well, the new Miss Galore. Where do you hide your gold knuckles in this outfit?
Pussy: Oh, uh, I never carry weapons after business hours.
Bond: Yeah? So you're off duty.
Pussy: I'm completely defenseless.
Bond: So am I.

During an impromptu tour of the stud farm, she escorted him directly toward a horse stable. Before entering the barn, Bond reminded Pussy of her "mad" boss Goldfinger: "Too bad it all has to end tomorrow morning. He's quite mad, you know."

Inside the barn entrance, they further bantered with sexy talk:

Bond: You're quite a girl, Pussy.
Pussy: I'm strictly the outdoor type.
Bond: I'd like to think you're not in all of this, uh, caper.
Pussy: Skip it. I'm not interested. Let's go. (He grabbed her as she turned to leave)
Bond: What would it take for you to see things my way?
Pussy: A lot more than you've got.
Bond: How do you know?
Pussy: I don't want to know.
Bond: (again after she threatened to walk away) Isn't it customary to grant the condemned man his last request?
Pussy: You've asked for this.

She grabbed his arm, flipped him forward into a somersault, and landed him in a pile of hay inside the barn - she had already proven her judo skills earlier. As they wrestled together, she confronted him with an order:

Pussy: Get up! (He grabbed her leg and upended her)
Bond: Certainly.

As they stood facing each other, he returned the favor by flipping her forward into another pile of hay. He then sat next to her and proposed: "There. Now let's both play." Their physical struggle and tussle seemed to convince her of the appeal of his manly ways and heterosexuality. Although she resisted at first, he lowered himself down on her and kissed her. She reciprocally softened and embraced him, as the seduction scene faded out.

[Note: Off-screen, Pussy fell for the virile Bond and changed allegiances. Her modified gender attraction had other ramifications that would affect Goldfinger's plan.]

The Fort Knox Assault:

Early the next morning, Pussy Galore's Flying Circus (five Piper planes loaded up with gas canisters under the wings) took off from the airfield for their mission, nicknamed Rock-a-Bye-Baby. In their V-formation, they proceeded to the Ft. Knox Depository to spray the deadly nerve gas over the entire area. Due to its predicted effects, military personnel and others on duty, some of whom were marching on the grounds, collapsed as expected. When the spraying was completed, Squadron Leader Denise reported to Pussy: "Champagne leader to Grand Slam task force leader. The baby is asleep."

Her radioed report signaled Goldfinger's ground forces (three Army trucks, a Willys jeep, and an ambulance) waiting in a convoy formation in the countryside, to advance forward. At the jeep, mission leader Mr. Kisch (dressed in a soldier's green fatigues uniform) blew a whistle and everyone donned gas masks. Disguised as military forces, Goldfinger's contingent began movement toward the outer perimeter of the Fort Knox area, bringing along Bond (handcuffed to Oddjob's wrist) in the open back of the third truck (a 1959 Ford F-100). The convoy easily assaulted and entered the external defensive area of the facility before approaching the Fort Knox Depository's front gate. Kisch was handed a wooden box holding a measuring device ("Auric Spectrometer") to ascertain the toxic level of the air. When he saw that the needle measured "Zero," he removed his gas mask and again blew his whistle to signal to everyone that their gas masks were no longer needed. A large contingent of blue jump-suited Korean henchmen dynamited the front gate with two golden explosive cylinders, before driving through the gateway.

The convoy proceeded forward and surrounded the central US Depository inside Fort Knox. The ambulance was revealed to be concealing a massive laser gun controlled by an instrument panel on the side of the vehicle. After backing the ambulance closer to the building, the red beam of the industrial strength laser was aimed at one of the solid steel doors of the Depository, to cut an opening. The sliced-open door (on three sides) was attached by chains to the back of the ambulance, and dragged out of the way.

The next step in the plan was to await the arrival of a helicopter (carrying Goldfinger and white-clad pilot Pussy Galore) that landed on the pavement near the Depository. The dirty nuclear bomb was delivered to the site in a large, rectangular silver metal box strapped to the side of the chopper, and was carefully moved by a wheeled trolley into the building. Near the entrance to the secure vault where the gold bars were stored, the locked bomb enclosure was opened by Mr. Ling. Using its internal control panel, he manipulated two rows on the combination lock of the vault and reset the numbers - and the vault's large circular door began to slowly open.

Upper Row
Lower Row
Original Numbers
Reset Numbers

Then, he primed the timer on the atomic device inside the silver enclosure to begin a countdown. After closing the lid on the bomb enclosure, the timer registered the digital number '354' as it began to rapidly decrease - the bomb would detonate when it reached zero, about six minutes later.

The Foiled 'Operation Grand Slam':

Suddenly, it was shown that Goldfinger's plan was about to be foiled. The plane's canisters had been switched somehow to render them harmless. The CIA had been alerted and everyone who appeared unconscious was only playing dead - Pussy had been convinced by the manly Bond to align herself with him and had notified Washington DC. One of those who had faked death outside was Felix Leiter, who revived in his US Army vehicle (a 1954 Ford Customline Country Sedan station wagon) - and began to make plans with military commandos to move in, but first they had to take precautions to ensure that the bomb would be neutralized before offensive fire commenced: ("Minimum offensive fire until I signal bomb has been neutralized").

Meanwhile, the bomb enclosure was wheeled on the trolley through the circular door of the gold bullion vault itself.

[Note: The circular door of the vault led directly to the 4th story landing level of the vault area. Each of the landings was attached to stairways leading down to the ground floor. There was also an elevator that connected the four levels. Much of the large gold bullion secure storage area extended underground.]

The trolley was steered toward an elevator at the end of the 4th story landing. Bond's handcuff was detached from Oddjob's wrist by Mr. Kisch and reattached to the trolley holding the atomic bomb enclosure. Goldfinger bid Bond farewell - with a slight bow: "Goodbye, Mr. Bond," just before Bond and the trolley were placed in the elevator. It moved down to the ground level, slowly descending next to enormous stacks of gold bullion bars. (The timer on the bomb was now at '256') Oddjob, Goldfinger, and Kisch were planning to exit from the vault's 4th story landing before the bomb detonated.

The military forces on the outside, after confirming that the enemy could not escape with their bomb, counter-attacked against Goldfinger's henchmen during a furious gun battle. Realizing that there was an assault taking place outside the Depository when he heard gunfire, Goldfinger (who was the first to leave the interior of the vault area) rushed to the control console at the Depository's entrance and randomly spun the dials to scramble the combination to the circular vault door and to seal the vault (with Oddjob, Bond, and Kisch still inside). Kisch rushed to the slowly closing circular exit door from the vault, but found himself trapped inside. To save himself from the military attack, Goldfinger removed his outer coat to reveal his disguise - a US Army Colonel uniform. Pretending he was on the opposing side, Goldfinger shot Mr. Ling at point-blank range with his golden pistol, and then picked up a machine gun from one of the fallen guards. He murdered five unsuspecting soldiers in the back before escaping outside.

Inside the vault on the fourth level, Kisch told Oddjob that he would try to remove the fuse from the atomic device to save them ("We're trapped. The bomb. I'll take the fuse out"). When Oddjob blocked him and attempted to prevent him from derailing their plan, Kisch yelled at him: "Don't be a fool! You can be a hero. I'm not." Oddjob chased after Kisch, grabbed him, and threw him off the balcony railing to his death four stories below where Bond was located. This was a fortuitous turn of events - the handcuffed Bond dragged the heavy bomb enclosure on the trolley over to the dead man's body, removed the handcuff keys from his top pocket, and unlocked his handcuffs. At the same time, the threatening Oddjob raced down the flights of stairs to stop him.

The two battled directly in a tense, one-on-one fight as the bomb's digital timer ticked down inside the besieged Fort Knox Depository. Bond was unable to concentrate on defusing the bomb's timer while struggling against Oddjob. When Oddjob reached the ground floor level, he threw his lethal bowler hat at Bond, who ducked - and the hat missed him. As he pursued Bond, Oddjob picked up his hat and threw it a second time - it severed a heavy electrical cable (causing it to shoot out sparks), and landed on the floor-cage's bars. At first, Bond tossed a heavy gold bar at Oddjob, but it bounced harmlessly off his chest. (The timer was now at '215') No match for Oddjob's immense strength, as the bomb timer ominously counted down further (The timer was now at '147'), the bruised and battered Bond retrieved the deadly hat from the floor and threw it back at Oddjob (who was standing in front of the cage bars), but missed. The rim of the hat became embedded, stuck or jammed into a set of vertical steel gate bars. When Oddjob reached for his hat, Bond touched the broken live wire of thousands of volts to the gate bars, electrocuting him in a shower of sparks. He fell forward onto his chest and died with outstretched arms on the floor. (The timer was now at '058').

Outside, in the Depository's entry area, Goldfinger's henchmen were retreating and dying in large numbers. With two gold ingot bars, Bond now attempted to smash open the locked top of the bomb enclosure to reach the controls (The timer was now at '049'). The US military forces, led by Felix Leiter, subdued the remaining Koren henchmen inside the Depository, and were also able to reset the combination locks on the circular vault door back to 36104. The reset combination allowed them access to the interior of the vault where Bond was located. Some of the surviving Korean henchmen fled through the vault's opening door but were gunned down. With only about a half minute left to deactivate the bomb, Bond finally succeeded in breaking open the lock on the bomb's enclosure cover. (The timer was now at '030') But he was baffled by the spinning gears and mechanisms inside the box - he was saved from death when an atomic scientist easily flipped a switch on the device with only 007 seconds to spare. Bond looked at the scientist and quipped: "What kept you?" He also told Felix about the fate of Goldfinger's butler:

Oh, he blew a fuse.

Bond also joked about how he had narrowly escaped death: "Three more ticks and Mr. Goldfinger would have hit the jackpot."

[Note: Bond's statement was inaccurate - he should have said "Seven more ticks..." The original plan was to stop the bomb timer at '003' and therefore the line of dialogue remained.]

Goldfinger had escaped in the helicopter, but according to Felix "won't get far." Bond was also told that Pussy had switched the gas in the canisters:

Felix: She helped us switch the gas in the canisters. By the way, what made her call Washington?
Bond: (surmising) I must have appealed to her maternal instincts.

Bond's Final Confrontation with Goldfinger:

A convoy of three vehicles (a black 1964 Lincoln Continental convertible, a black limousine, and a white 1961 Chevrolet Brookwood station wagon) approached a parked Lockheed Martin Jetstar plane (disguised as a USAF C-140 transport) at an airfield. Leiter and Bond emerged from the first vehicle. Bond was scheduled for a private meeting with the US President at the White House, including transport on a chartered private plane and a luncheon, so that he could be personally thanked for his service.

Once the plane was airborne, the blue curtains leading to the cockpit opened and Goldfinger (still dressed in the military uniform) greeted Bond by pointing his gold-plated gun at him. (A brief insert revealed that the original three-person plane crew had been tied up and gagged in the airport's hangar.) Bond made light: "Are you having lunch at the White House, too?" Goldfinger told Bond that he intended to have the hijacked plane fly to Cuba, and was due to arrive in two hours. When Bond asked about the whereabouts of Pussy, Goldfinger claimed he had coerced his ex-personal pilot to pilot the plane: ("At the moment, she is where she ought to be -- at the controls"). When Goldfinger was momentarily distracted, Bond seized his arm and struggled with him for the gun. The revolver discharged and blew out one of the plane's windows, causing a drastic loss and decompression of cabin air pressure (as Bond had warned Pussy earlier).

While Bond held on tightly to an upper railing and the plane plummeted in altitude, Goldfinger was drawn head-first toward the tiny broken window. He swiveled around and was sucked out legs first, as he screamed. Pussy struggled to control the plane from the cockpit as the aircraft precipitously dove toward the ground. Bond made it into the cockpit to assist Pussy and told her that gold-obsessed Goldfinger was "playing his golden harp." She feared the worst: "It's no good!" Meanwhile, back at the airfield, the three original crew members were discovered in the hangar, and Felix and others watched the control tower's radar screen scope as the plane (seen as a tiny white dot) dropped rapidly from 8,000 to 5,000 feet, and was continuing to descend.

On the green radar scope, at about the 4,000 foot level of altitude, a second dot appeared - while the original dot representing the plane continued toward the ocean (0 foot altitude) and crashed in a ball of fire. The additional dot represented Pussy and Bond, who had apparently parachuted together to safety, and landed on a remote, tree-covered tropical island. A search party helicopter (with Felix and a pilot on board) flew over the site of the crash looking for them. When Pussy began signaling for help by waving her white jacket, Bond discouraged her. He grabbed her ankle, pulled her to the ground, and covered up the two of them with their red and white striped parachute - for privacy's sake, as they kissed:

Oh no, you don't! This is no time to be rescued.

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