Another Bond film I often forget about, although it is one of my mothers favorites (she loves Faberge eggs.) I said this in my ranking of my Bond films and I will say it again, this is one of the more campier Bond films but nonetheless it is enjoyable. Spoilers ahead. I DO NOT OWN THE PICTURE.
After 009 is killed dressed as a clown and carrying a fake Faberge egg, MI6 is quick to suspect the Soviets are involved after the real egg shows up an an auction. M (Robert Brown) sends Bond (Roger Moore once more) to find out who the seller is. While at the auction Bond engages in a bidding war with Kamal Khan (Louis Jordan), an Afghan prince exiled eventually forcing Khan to pay 500,000 pounds for the egg. However Bond switches the real egg for a fake and follows Khan to India. After seduced by Khan’s associate Magda (Kristina Wayborn) Bond allows her to take the egg back, but had a listening device implanted. Bond discovers Khan is working with Soviet general Orlov (Steven Berkoff), who seeks to expand the Soviet into West-Central Europe, as well as bomb a U.S. Air Force base using a circus as a cover (which the Soviets see as insane.) Bond also meets Octopussy (Maud Adams) Khan’s associate in smuggling the Soviet jewels Khan is being paid with for his help. Khan also has a henchman in Gobinda (Kabir Bedi.)
So what makes this film campy, well for starters Roger Moor dressed as a clown to evade the German police and convince the Minister of Defense and Octopussy there is a bomb, yeah that happened. Again the writing was not too great, the action while not terrible is not as good compared to other Bond films. I did enjoy the scene where Bond has to fight the twin knife throwers, not at the same time but still enjoyable. I also liked the final battle at Khan’s palace as well as the fight on the plane between Bond and Gobinda.
My thoughts on Octopussy will be later, so I want to focus on other characters. This was Robert Brown’s first outing as M after the passing of Bernard Lee. He did come off as somewhat nicer to Bond compared to other M’s, an expect for this M will be later on, but overall he was good. I liked how Q (Desmond Llewelyn) is actually outside the lab and while is not part of the action per say plays more of a role than just “here is the gadgets, how they work, grow up 007.” Khan, much like Kristatos is somewhat of a middle man helping Orlov for the most part. However unlike Kristatos Khan is a much more interesting character. He is slimy, he is actually getting something out of helping Orlov and after the plan goes to hell he does everything to get away and kill Bond and Octopussy so it will not get back to him. Orlov is insane that even long time on and off rival in the franchise General Gogol thought he was nuts. Gobinda basically does what he told no matter what, much like Oddjob in Goldfinger, although he did question for two seconds when Khan tells him to get Bond on that tiny plane. This is a not too great Bond film so unless you liked the franchise I would not put this high on the recommendation list.