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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 27 March 2009
'Goldfinger' is one of my favourite movies and was the first DVD disc I ever played. I put off buying a Blu-ray player until 'Goldfinger' was available on that format. So, putting that disc into my brand new Panasonic DMP-BD35 player was a much anticipated event, fraught with the possibility of either fulfilment or of bitter disappointment.
Fortunately, I was served up a large dollop of joy. The reviews of the Blu-ray releases of 'Dr. No' and 'From Russia with Love' were very positive and so it has proved to be the same for 'Goldfinger'
However, I can't agree with reviews that say "Set in the '60s but looks as if it was filmed yesterday". It simply isn't going to look as sharp as 'Bourne Ultimatum' (for example) but the Technicolor palette has never looked quite so natural - e.g. the golf match between Goldfinger & Bond. Some scenes are really quite beautiful such as the Alpine, 'Golden Girl', and 'Fort Knox' interior scenes. However the High Def format shows up flaws in the matte and model work. The soundtrack is also greatly enhanced with the title sequence looking and sounding fantastic. Most of the extras have been available on previous DVD releases and have now been enhanced for the Blu-ray release.
If you are an HD-loving, long-standing Bond fan and think 'Goldfinger' is THE essential Bond movie, just buy it.
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When the "Ultimate Edition" 2DVD sets of the Bond films were finally released in July 2006, most fans couldn't believe their luck or their eyes. It didn't seem to matter which of the 20 films you bought - due to the Pristine Lowry Digital Restoration Process (frame-by-frame clean up that apparently took two years to achieve), they were all jaw dropping - simply spectacular to look at. And each was bolstered up with spiffy new 007 menus and period special features that were informative and actually worth seeing.

It should therefore come as no surprise that this 2009 BLU RAY reissue of 1964's "Goldfinger" (directed by Guy Hamilton) uses those same cleaned-up elements and extras - and is an awesome thing to behold.

To put this into an actual context - here's some examples of how revelatory the print actually is - in the pre opening-credits sequence when 007 plants his detonation devices, Connery then peels out of what is supposed to be a wetsuit, but you can clearly see it's black/blue silk outfit to offset his immaculate white tuxedo beneath (then he buttonhole's his red carnation in incredible clarity). When he comes out onto the hotel balcony in Miami and lies down beside Gill Masterson on the sun-lounge (Shirley Eaton instructing Gert Frobe via binoculars as to what the other card player is holding), on the close up of 007's face, you can clearly see applied make-up on his cheeks - it's Bond in blusher!

Or how about this... as Bond talks to Auric Goldfinger on the golf-course before they tee off, you can just about make out the dividing lines between the square turfs of grass they laid out to make the tee-off area look more lush. Then there's the deep black enamel of the AU 1 number plate on the Phantom 337 as its loaded into a transport plane bound for Geneva... Pussy Galore as Bond wakes up on the Lockheed en route to the USA - her golden blonde hair slowly coming into focus in dazzling sexy clarity... and on it goes...scene after scene of unbelievable detail - leaves in Mint Julep drinks - the two moles on the left side of Honor Blackman's face...yikes!

All the elements came together on "Goldfinger" that would set up a template for decades to come - the eye-catching opening sequence, the sexy credits and the new Bond song, the gadgets, the fearsome unkillable bad guy, the leggy molls who may or may not have your best interests at heart, the cars and gadgets, Desmond Llewelyn as the exasperated Q and Bernard Lee as the permanently frowning M. Throw in the Aston Martin DB 5 with its fantastically handy ejector seat and Harold Sakata as the Korean assassin Oddjob and his chop-your-head-off bowler hat - and you're on a winner. And then of course the film's ultimate trump card - Sean Connery - sex on legs - a man with something permanently lodged down his trousers and we're not talking about starched Y-fronts. He'll kill you, smile afterwards and then flick the bits off of his immaculately groomed Saville Row suit...

You also forget about the great one-liners - "shocking...positively shocking" as he fries the bad guy in the bath; "The President has expressed satisfaction...that makes two of us..." Bond says as he rolls off a babe and turns off the radio; "...Unfortunately he has a pressing engagement..." Goldfinger says as he dispatches Mr. Solo (one of the hoods) off to the car-crusher. It's all so bloody good - and it still makes you tingle.

Luckily the extras have survived intact too - there's a commentary from members of the cast and crew, a revealing on-set interview with a suited-and-booted Connery, the "Declassified: M16 Vault" feature which is just so enjoyable. Although I love the outer card wrap, which gives it a classy feel and a uniform look when lined up against the other titles in the series (not all are available yet), it's a real shame that there's no commemorative booklet - it would be such a sweet touch.

To sum up - when Sean Connery pulls the parachute silk over him and Honor Blackman at the end of the movie and announces "...this is no time to be saved!" - you can't help but feel that the dapper British agent has a point.

Bond 3 on BLU RAY is surely up there with the very best restorations ever done - a triumph - and that the movie is still such a blast after 35 years of endless re-watches is a testament to its durability.

"Goldfinger" is in fact like Sophia Loren - it never ages and will always ooze sex - it's ample chest and tiny waistline will be making grown men go weak at the knees in a hundred years from now. And even if that bad guy's laser beam is getting a little too close to all of our privates these days - you can buy this Martini of a film, put on the tux, pull in the girdle - and cheer yourself up no end.

Love it. Love it. Love it.

PS: for other superb restorations on BLU RAY, see also my reviews for "The Italian Job", "Saturday Night, Sunday Morning", "The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner", "The Dambusters", "Quo Vadis", "North By Northwest", "Cool Hand Luke", "The Prisoner - The Complete (UK TV) Series In High Definition", "Braveheart", "Snatch", "The African Queen" and "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang"
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As is oft quoted, this movie is where all the ingredients came together. Whether this is your favourite Bond movie or not, probably depends mostly on how you appreciated the change in tone that happened with this movie. Guy Hamilton took over directing duties, and recognised the whole tongue in cheek potential of the franchise, as exemplified by the opening sequence, and ran with that. This opening sequence has Bond swim up `disguised' with a duck on his head, and run around setting charges in an extravagant Ken Adams designed set, before suavely peeling back the dry suit to reveal an immaculate white suit, flourishing a carnation for his lapel from who-knows-where, and sauntering in to seduce a lady in a bar. This mini-story within a story exemplifies all that was to come in the movie and movies to follow. Suave, funny, action packed, and of course just a little bit over the top.

Much is said of the fact that gadgets came to the fore - the Aston Martin is introduced in spectacular form, and the women are both beautiful and played by talented actresses. Honor Blackman as Pussy Galore was the first leading Bond lady who actually had previous acting experience (and at 36, the oldest actress to play a Bond lady). John Barry has also crafted a fully realised score for the movie far superior to his earlier work on Bond movies. However, two things above all make Goldfinger a success. Firstly, Sean Connery is by now completely at home with the character. His comfort in the role without yet being tired of it adds immeasurably to the charm of the movie. Secondly, the true measure of a Bond movie is in how good the villain is - and Gert Frobe makes a fantastic megalomaniac. You only have to check out the two screen tests for other actors to realise just how different the movie would have been without his exuberant style. The character, as well as key movie plotlines, rely on his bombastic enthusiasm for boasting, and Frobe makes this a believable trait.

Whether you like the comedic elements or not, the fact is that Guy Hamilton clearly got the balance right to appeal to the widest possible audience. Goldfinger was not just a hit - it was a phenomenon. This is amply demonstrated in the extras, which include all of the Special Edition extras plus various period interviews and feauturettes, including an open-ended interview with Honor Blackman, on set chat with Connery, the aforementioned screen tests and a 10 minute BBC feature on the Aston Martin touring to promote the film. Despite these additions, the best of all is still the entertaining and thorough half hour documentary and movie commentary from the Special Edition.

In reality, as a film Goldfinger does not deserve 5 stars. But this is not reality - this is entertainment. And as the most defining iconic movie of a 20th Century hero, this movie has more than enough entertainment value to override the quibbles and make this a 5 star success.
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on 11 June 2001
The DVD is extraordinarily good, with two informative commentaries. The two documentaries cover similar ground, but one incorporates a fascinating glimspe at a screen test for the title role. The picture quality is excellent for such an old film, and the sound is crisp. The film has all the ingredients of Gadgets, girls and Vodkatini's. 'Goldfinger' is often sited as the best Bond, however while the film introduces all the dominant themes of the series, it lacks the humour and sense of fun in all the Seventies Bonds. People should except that Moore and Connery are brilliant Bonds, but in different ways.
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on 26 February 2011
Twenty One reviews and all of the Five Star. It says it all really. So many Iconic bond momentws, the first bond car, the lazer up between the legs, the game of golf at Stoke Poges to name but a few, Probably the most famous, and probably the best bond ever
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VINE VOICEon 11 October 2003
This is a must for any self-respecting Bond fan - the ultimate in the series!
Pussy Galore has to be the best Bond-girl, Gert Frobe is the best villain and Connery, of course, is the best Bond - no contest there!
Be blown away by the power of Shirley Bassey's voice, by the fantastic plot, the wonderful script, great casting and most definitely by 007's sexy smile (especially in that infamous aeroplane scene with Pussy Galore).

This is the Bond film with the best 007 to villain repartee -
Bond: "Do you expect me to talk?"
Goldfinger: "No Mr Bond, I expect you to die!"
Buy it now and you won't ever have to wait for it to come on TV ever again! As soon as you get it delivered, put it in the DVD player, sit back and be sure that you won't be disappointed!
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on 10 February 2017
THE (to me) most iconic Bond in his (to me) most iconic film. Bought it because I've recently become besotted with Aston Martins [especially the DB11, and of course the sound, glamour and fun of James' DB5 kills me every time I even think of it !]. My one criticism of the disc I bought approximately 2/2/2016 is the opening intro' where an obviously 'doctored' version of Bond swings round to shoot the 'gun barrel' holder - long haired, un-slim, nearly tripped over ! So, +12/10 for the film, but MINUS 12/10 for the barrel bit.
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on 12 March 2017
From the opening pre-credit adventure to the end credits this Bond film moves along at a brisk pace.

Goldfinger, Oddjob, Pussy Galore are all great characters. The script, as with the previous film - From Russia With Love, is superlative.

Forget Skyfall (overrated nonsense) this is the ultimate Bond movie.
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on 18 April 2011
This remastered version is excellent, the opening aerial shots of Miami are a clear and colourful as anything you would see on an episode of CSI:Miami. The picture quality is crystal clear as is the soundtrack, the title song is really vibrant (sang, as ever, in the key of LOUD by Dame Shirley Bassey!).

There is however one niggle, the remastering process is so good, it now so very very easy to pick up where shots have been superimposed, this is really apparent early in the film when the oil tanks explode, and when Sean Connery is 'outside' the hotel in Miami for his meeting with Leiter.

Apart from that, it's a top notch effort, well worth the purchase price.
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Come on, we all want that car, after all who hasn’t dreamt of driving along in that Aston Martin DB5, with “Some modifications” as Q says. I also have a slight predilection for Oddjob’s hat. This film really set out the winning formula of Bond films since, we have an introduction where we see intrepid James completing another mission, and also the more abundant use of gadgets. With a bigger budget than the two previous films this did very well at the box office, and on the whole got some really good reviews at the time, and has since then come to be considered as still one of the best films in the series.

As is standard this does deviate from the novel to a certain degree, but whilst keeping in the gold painted lady who dies because of this (totally fictitious) this does away with the original plot of a gold heist, and completely veers away from any overt mention of Pussy Galore and her girls being lesbians. After all in the book Bond seduces her and she falls for him, hardly likely to happen in real life, and I must admit was probably just a fantasy of Ian Fleming.

So in the end we are presented with what the James Bond films are quintessentially about, cool gadgets, sexy women and great escapism, a winning formula that has carried on since then.

When Bond is sent to investigate magnate Auric Goldfinger, so he uncovers a quite daring and it has to be admitted clever plot, for Goldfinger, in alliance with the Chinese is about to try and pull off a crime that will not only make him rich, but also cause a catastrophe for the American economy.

With Pussy Galore, played by Honor Blackman we also have Shirley Eaton as the gold painted corpse, and her sister, played by model Tania Mallet, in I think her only film role. A hit at the time and one that not only made the films but also the books much more popular Bond really takes off here and there are certain tongue in cheek moments and some one-liners. This humour with the action works very well and allows us to remember that this is just entertainment.

Always a pleasure to watch this edition also has Dolby 5.1 sound but the extras are only some audio commentaries which personally I never listen to, and the trailer.
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