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4.5 out of 5 stars135
4.5 out of 5 stars
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Definitely my favourite Bond film of the 1970's. For me, it works perfectly because of:

- The soundtrack, which is beautifully orchestrated when sampling the main theme tune, and impresses on the more 'disco' influences too, with the uses of particular drum rolls/bass guitar twangs, and Moog synths. A very memorable soundtrack that is much less cliched than previous 70's Bond outings (Live and Let Die anyone?).

- Well rounded script which has just the right balance between humour and a serious nature. The token one-liners are present, but it's all fun as expected; My favourite being "He just popped in for a bite", after the fight with Jaws on the train.

- Fantastic stages and effects - I believe the one used for the ending sequence in the Lipurus cargo ship was one of the biggest sets ever made at the time. Some blue-screens are quite obvious, but for the majority it excelled for the time. Bond even gets to pilot a rather rudimentary craft we may now call a 'Jet Ski'...

- Casting, which is really perfected. I don't think anyone else could play Jaws, and Ringo Star's wife who plays 'Triple X' (the Bond girl, for this instance) has a fantastic relationship with Moore. They bounce off each other, yet her complete utter sexiness and danger make them a likeable partnership.

I would say post 'The Spy Who Loved Me', all Moores films were fantastic. 'Moonraker' may be taking things a bit too far for some, but the likes of 'For Your Eyes Only' and 'A View To A Kill' wrap his time as Bond up excellently. Should he have gotten the face-lift though?...

Just on a general note for the DVD - we received a single-disc version, with no extras. Were too disappointed though, as the picture quality is impeccable, and we only tend to watch extra-features once!
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The Spy Who Loved Me holds up, along with You Only Live Twice, as the best of the special effects show Bond movies (like Lewis Gilbert's other Bond, the dire Moonraker, it more or less shares the same plot and even identical camera set-ups in places). Planned to turn the Bonds back into blockbusters after the somewhat more down to Earth Harry Saltzman left the series, Cubby Broccoli plays safe with a virtual `greatest hits' compilation album of all your favorite Bond setpieces (the train fight from From Russia With Love, a gadget-filled car a la Goldfinger, a ski chase a la OHMSS, etc), but its put together with skill, panache and a sense of the epic that carries you along. Moore's Bond still has a bit of steel in him and the script is so good you find yourself wondering if it really is the same Christopher Wood responsible for the British soft-porn Confessions series credited as co-writer.

As with others in the series, the upgrade to 2-disc `Ultimate Edition' at times feels more cosmetic than actual in terms of extras (as usual, there are plenty of other potential supplements, such as Movietone newsreel footage of the shoot, that have not been included), although alongside brief archive footage of the massive purpose-built 007 Stage being dedicated, a vintage Roger Moore and a 1977 promo featurette covering the shoot in Egypt there are production designer Ken Adams' home movies of the shoot and a storyboard sequence. But, alongside Moore's new commentary, perhaps the most enjoyable extras are the TV spots and the teaser trailer introduced by Moore in character carried over from the previous issue.
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Superspy James Bond's tenth big screen outing was BIG. With a big budget and with one of the biggest film sets ever built, it all comes together as an entertaining romp.

Bond is sent off to investigate the mysterious disappearance of nuclear submarines. The Russians have also lost a sub, and soon Bond is crossing swords with their agent triple X as well as the mysterious Jaws (Richard Kiel with a brace that is a match for Ugly Betty's!). As the chase runs from Egypt to Sardinia, Bond and Triple X soon work out that Curt Jurgens' sinister tycoon Stromberg is behind things, and he has a plan to destroy the world and set up a new paradise with a few chosen ones under the sea.

The action and stunts are big and thrilling. There are several well known sequences like the Union Jack parachute jump, the submarine bay fight, the underwater Lotus and the battles with Jaws. It's a thrilling ride most of the time, but however there are a couple of things that let it down. Jurgens is criminally underused, and Stromberg a badly written character. And the whole romance aspect is a bit cloying. And the feel is a little too jokey at times.

This digitally restored edition really is the best version of the film I have owned. The picture has been lovingly restored and cleaned up, and looks amazing. Really, I am not just saying that. It looks superb. The sound has been similarly treated and there is an option to listen to it in 5.1 DTS surround, which is truly exceptional.
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on 8 August 2006
The Spy Who Loved Me contains some of THE iconic images from the James Bond film series - the Lotus Esprit, the skiing stunt complete with the Union Jack parachute - as well as Roger Moore in top form as our hero, James Bond. The film also has one of the great BOnd villans in Jaws, here genuinely menacing before he was reduced as a comic villan in Mookraker as well as a top quality Bond lady in Barbara Bach.

This DVD has cleaned up the original film and this copy of The Spy Who Loved Me is sparkling. However, I do have reservations in this Ultimate Edition DVD in comparing this DVD with the Special Edition release of five years ago. In my opinion there is not that much difference between the two, both have the same excellent documentaries and photographs and contain the same commentary from the makers of the film. There are only two significant differences - firstly, the menus are different, but not necessarily better, and secondly, the DVD contains a commentary from Roger Moore. For this alone the DVD is worth buying as the commentary is excellent and shows Moore as the charming man he is.

However, if you are not interested in the Moore commentary but already own TSWLM on DVD, then this DVD is not worth buying as it is not radically different from the previous release. For this reason alone, I have deducted one star from my rating as undoubtedly TSWLM is defintely a five star film.
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on 28 July 2007
This is Roger's tour-de-force as 007: a white submersible Lotus Esprit, Barbara Bach, Egypt, Richard Kiel as Jaws, the incredible opening sequence, Carly Simon's fabulous theme tune...this re-released version has some nice extras, and I would watch it on as big a TV as you can find because I still cannot beat the experience I had watching this as a ten year old in 1977 on the big screen: when the Bond music kicked in after the opening chase everyone in the cinema cheered, and rightly so!

Nice one Roger...
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on 20 November 2002
The Spy Who Loved Me is arguably the ultimate film in the James Bond series (yes not Goldfinger!). It is the best example of the Bond formula at its purest and worked to its best.
It pefectly combines humour, gadgets, girls, outrageous sets and villans, and undoubtably Roger Moores finest performance as 007.
Thats not to say though that it is the greatest Bond film ever, but its certainly up there and in many peoples opinion it surpasses all other mvies in the series.
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on 28 November 2006
For me this has to be one of the best 007 movies of all time starring super cool Roger Moore as the legendary secret agent James Bond. This movie has it all from the gadget laden and minisub converting Lotus Esprit S1. To the lovely Bond Girls such as Agent Triple x Barbara Bach the theme by Carly Simon and Jaws. Industrialist and madman played by Kurt Yugens as Stromberg who want world domination through a nuclear war. He steals a British Nuclear sub and a Russian one which are taken inside a huge super tanker. Bond is drafted in to track down Stromberg with Triple x and chase around the world with Jaws in pursuit. Finally Strombergs underwater palace named 'Atlantis' is destroyed by a torpedo from the American sub.

There are many memorable sequences in this film such as Bonds escape from the KGB in Austria, to the Esprit coming out onto the beach , the attack by Jaws in the valley of the kings in egypt to Bond facing off Stromberg at the end of the movie. The extras are axtensive on this new issue and are a little better than the previous issue. A documentary charts the films troubled beginning to script changes and a the building of the huge soundstage at Pinewood. To the detailed events on how Colin Chapman managed to get the then new Lotus Esprit to take on a starring role in the film. I'm not sure I would buy this issue as I have the previous one but it's a must for the Bond fan.
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on 21 January 2002
After the very mediocre 'The man with the golden gun', the series returns with a vengeance. 'The Spy who loved me' is cinematic genius. It is easy to see why this film got people back into Bond when it was first released. The action is explosive and gripping, the women are quite possibly the most beautiful ever seen in a Bond film and the comedy instead of being forced and immature is absolutely hilarious! Moore gives his best perfomance of his 7 films and he is not let down by the supporting role from Barbara Bach and Richard Kiel. The music is fantastic, particularly the theme song by Carly Simon. If you do not own this video already then you have a bleak void in your collection which can only be filled by this film alone. Whether you are a Bond fan or not, I have no doubt that you will love this film right from the breathtaking opening sequence to the hysterical (and quite camp!!!) ending. Quite simply brilliant.
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VINE VOICEon 16 April 2003
This is my personal favorite of the Roger Moore 007 movies so I was looking forward to the DVD to see what sort of commentary would be provided to go along with it. Here we are treated to Producer Micheal Wilson, Designer Ken Adam and writer Chrostopher Wood recounting their memories of the movie in a screen-specific commentary. Added to this is a lengthy "Making of...." feature (over 40 minutes) that all in all combines to make this a movie that belongs in everyones DVD library. The movie iteself is intriguing with very satisfying action scenes, humor and the most beautiful actress ever to grace the movie screen - Barbara Bach...
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on 3 February 2016
Logline: When British and Soviet submarines are stolen, Bond and his female Soviet counterpart must work together to prevent a megalomaniac and his indestructible henchman using the submarines’ nuclear missiles to provoke world war three.

Although The Spy Who Loved Me is an enjoyable movie, it was made in the nineteen seventies, has dated somewhat and has faults, some a more forgiveable than others – the movie can’t really be blamed where film-making technology has improved.

The locations and sets are great: the gigantic supertanker set, Stromberg’s underwater base, the Egyptian pyramids and temples. But movies have better cinematography now, and a lot of the sets, the train, the submarine, various hotels and clubs, seem overlit and stagey.

The fight scenes are tame by modern standards, but that has its good and bad side: real fights aren’t the ‘ballet with fists’ we see today, and real punches don’t make a noise like an iron bar hitting concrete. And Bond actually looks scared when Jaws is beating the crap out of him, which is good.

The action set pieces and stunt work in The Spy Who Loved Me are some of the best in any Bond film. Iconic moments like Bond skiing off a cliff and then his parachute opening, the Lotus Esprit turning into a submarine, and the bows of the supertanker opening to swallow the submarine, are great and work perfectly. On the other hand, special effects to include the actors in the action scenes have come a long way. Some of the back-projection used to include close-ups of Roger Moore in the action scenes looks poor now.

Less acceptable is the script which is clunky, both in dialogue and plot mechanics, with a lot of brief logistical and plot exposition scenes. It also has Bond spout endless one liners, hardly any of which are actually funny. Scenes like Bond in Arab dress on a camel for no good reason are just an embarrassment. Also, by modern standards, the movie is quite slow – the opening half an hour in Egypt would be cut to about ten minutes these days – compare the pyramids scene in The Spy Who Loved Me to the similar scene at the opera in Quantum of Solace for example.

The acting is mediocre all round. Roger Moore is okay when he’s not leering or smirking, which is not often. His occasional serious scenes such as when he explains to Anya why he killed her lover are good, but there’s not many of them. Barbara Bach is beautiful, but wooden, and considering she’s supposed to be the KGB’s top agent she doesn’t get much to do.

Having said all that, The Spy Who Loved Me does still work, and I can forgive it a lot for the sight of Bond’s union jack parachute and the Lotus Esprit turning into a submarine.

See my full review, including full plot synopsis, on my website.
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