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 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Friday May 22, 2020 

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In this 5th and challenging Bond film, Agent 007 (Sean Connery), in a race to prevent a nuclear war between the super-powers, finds himself in Japan where he confronts the evil SPECTRE organisation and its diabolical leader Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Donald Pleasance).

"In this 5th and challenging Bond film, Agent 007, in a race to prevent a nuclear war between the super-powers, finds himself in Japan where he confronts the evil SPECTRE organisation and its diabolical leader Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

Similarly structured to the other superb DVD Bond titles with outstanding features and jammed with information licenced to thrill, You Only Live Twice devotes one special segment to its famous, memorable titles. Called 'Silhouettes The James Bond Titles', this feature pays tribute to Maurice Binder, one of the greatest of all title artists, who was responsible for most of the early Bond titles. We look at the man, his work and how the naked, silhouetted girls influenced modern cinema. Binder's greatest regret? His decision to be paid instead of a piece of the action. We hear from friends, colleagues and relations, who describe how this brilliant innovator and graphic designer achieved incredible results from simple effects. His interest was in technology, colour and sex. We hear that if Binder was auditioning a girl and examining her fingernails, before long, somehow, she had taken all her clothes off. Roger Moore and songstress Sheena Easton recall their experiences, and how they were incorporated into the striking title credits. The titles were an event in themselves, and to get an insight into the philosophy, the background and how they were achieved, is extraordinary.

We get a good feel for the time and place in the documentary, which canvasses the mood of the day, the problems, background to hiring the director and script writer. It was during this production that Sean Connery announced his retirement from the Bond films, and the media interest was huge. On the set in Japan, we hear about the immense problems of the shoot from the Japanese girls who couldn't speak English, to the aerial accident that caused cinematographer Johnny Jordan to lose a foot. We meet cast and crew who worked on the film as well as Connery's ex wife Diane Cilento, who doubled for some of the Japanese actresses in some of the diving scenes. More steel was used to build the set representing the extinct crater than was used for the London Hilton.

The audio commentary featuring Lewis Gilbert and cast & crew members continues to fascinate, and there is almost too much information to absorb. Nancy Sinatra, who sang the title song recalls her intimidation by the 70 piece orchestra and the experience with conductor John Barry. The animated story board sequence of the plane crash is interesting, as are the original radio spots and four trailers shown in US & UK. Bond mania is alive and well and this latest DVD in the superb Bond series is a great addition to the collection."
Louise Keller



We gratefully acknowledge the complimentary use of a DVD player from Philips.


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CAST: Sean Connery, Akiko Wakabayashi, Mie Hama, Tetsuro Tamba, Teru Shimada, Karin Dor, Donald Pleasence, Bernard Lee, Lois Maxwell

DIRECTOR: Lewis Gilbert

SCRIPT: Roald Dahl (from Ian Fleming's novel)

RUNNING TIME: 111 minutes

DVD Distributor: Fox Home Entertainment

DVD RELEASE: September 13, 2000

Audio commentary by director Lewis Gilbert & members of cast & crew

Inside You Can Only Live Twice documentary

Silhouettes The James Bond Titles

You Only Live Twice/Thunderball double featurette

Animated story board sequences Plane Crash

Original theatrical trailer, Television & radio spots

Collectible 'making of' booklet

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