Writer: Christopher Wood (Screenplay)
Starring: Roger Moore, Lois Chiles, Michael Lonsdale, Richard Kiel, Corinne Clery, Bernard Lee, Geoffrey Keen
Plot: James Bond investigates the mid-air theft of a space shuttle, and discovers a plot to commit global genocide.
Tagline – Moonraker Is Out Of This World
Runtime: 2 Hour 6 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Cheesy as it Gets
Story: Moonraker starts when a space shuttle is stolen in mid-flight on route to the British, James Bond (Moore) must travel to America to meet Hugo Drax (Lonsdale) the mastermind behind the space shuttle which could take tourists to space.
James must work with CIA agent Holly Goodhead (Chiles) to figure out why Drax is trying to sabotage his own space shuttle, which sees him hire an old enemy of James’ Jaws (Kiel) in an adventure which takes him out of this world.
Thoughts on Moonraker
Characters – James Bond is still getting himself into trouble when it comes to the ladies, using his charm to seduce and his skills to outsmart the villain of this film. we don’t get much new from him this time out. Holly Goodhead is an agent for the CIA, she has been undercover in search of answers becoming a working partner and romantic partner for James. Hugo Drax is the mastermind behind space travel, he has stolen his own shuttle back with plans for his own use of it, something different to most of the villains we have seen through the franchise to date. Jaws is the henchman that has returned, he has been after James and always seems to find a way to lose him, he is too comical in this role if we are being honest.
Performances – Roger Moore does continue the campy side to his version of Bond, it is acceptable for the most part. Lois Chiles doesn’t bring much to the Bond girl figure that we all know and Michael Lonsdale does bring us a simple villain, that never fees like a threat.
Story – The story brings us a solo story for James, which is good for a stand alone film, but sometimes we like to see him dealing with SPECTRE once again. The villain does have a good motivation and masterplan, while Bond gets to travel around the world in search for answers. This film does have some of the cheesy dialogue of any Bond film which can make things not feel as serious as they could be. The ambition behind this film is something to be praised though because of the pure scale of moving things into space does work for the concept, maybe not on effects level.
Action/Adventure/Sci-fi – The action is large-scale once again, we get new ideas for difficult positions James will find himself in, needing to fight his way out of too. The adventure takes James out of this world literally as he goes into space with his mission. The sci-fi element of the film is focusing on the idea that villain has plans involving space shuttles which does add something new to the ideas we are focusing on.
Settings – The film uses the settings well because we get the beauty spots, the American base, the streets of Venice, before hitting space showing us just how far Bond will be going this time around.
Final Thoughts – This is one of the cheesy Bond movies you will see, it does work for the most part, just don’t go in too seriously with any hopes of a realistic idea.
Overall: Cheesy as hell, but fun.