Even if some of them haven’t quite weathered the years too well, the classic films in the long-running James Bond franchise are never in any danger of going out of style — and with Middletown Township Public Library having decreed that All Things 007 is the theme for September’s series of free film screening events, fans will have their pick of four distinct Bonds.
The series gets underway on Monday, September 8 with a 2:30 pm showing of The Man with the Golden Gun — the second of Roger Moore’s seven turns in the tuxedo, and an entry that casts horror master Christopher Lee as the suave assassin Scaramanga (with a pre-Fantasy Island Herve Villechaize as his sidekick). An improvement on Moore’s Bond debut — even with a tad too much comic relief — the 1974 romp found TV’s former Saint getting comfortable in the role that he’d play over the course of the next decade.
The Bond action resumes on September 15 with a complete change of mood in Casino Royale, a gritty-reboot 2006 adaptation of Ian Fleming’s original novel, and a first look at current-Bond Daniel Craig as a sullen secret agent who’s freshly Licensed to Kill. Craig’s predecessor Pierce Brosnan made his first kill in GoldenEye, an exciting 1995 actioner (screening September 22) with a top-notch supporting cast and what’s arguably the former Remington Steele‘s best outing in the iconic role.
For a whole lot of fans, however, Sean Connery remains the be-all and Bond-all — and on September 29 the Library series concludes with 1963’s sophomore sequel From Russia with Love. Although a lot of the familiar Bond tropes hadn’t made it to the screen at that point, the film’s got a lot to recommend it, including some memorable baddies (played by Robert Shaw and cabaret star Lotte Lenya), and the first of composer John Barry’s tremendous scores.
All screenings are at 2:30 pm; check the MTPL website for additional free movie events in August, including a teen series and a monthly SciFi book/film discussion.