- Movie Rating -

A View to a Kill (1985)

| June 21, 1985

Roger Moore is a good actor but he never really seemed all that credible as James Bond.  Much like Adam West in the Batman role, he wanted to give the Bond character a lightness of touch, a comedic side.  That, I’m afraid, is the problem.  It has robbed the character of his steely toughness, which is required if you’re going to stand against men whose ultimate goal is global domination.  At 58 years of age, Moore has now been through seven of the fourteen James Bond adventures and I’m afraid that A View to a Kill will rank as one of the worst.

First, is his age.  Moore is 58.  His leading lady in the film is 29.  You can see the wrinkles, the crow’s feet, the hair piece and the leaden pace when simply running across the street.  Of course, this could have been used to his advantage if anyone involved in the production had any interest in using his age to the advantage of the character – maybe a portrait of an older Bond who is feeling his age.  But this series is too guarded, too much of a cash box for the studio to take such risks.

Second, the story.  A billionaire industrialist with the terrific villain name of Max Zorin (Christopher Walken) wants to corner the market on computer chips by destroying all of the computer firms in Silicon Valley by starting a massive Earthquake in San Francisco.  This, of course, is flawed reasoning since the chips are manufactured in Japan, not California.  So, by destroying all of the firms that would purchase the chips, who is he going to sell them to?

So, there you have two major problems with A View to a Kill which empties out the entire picture.  When it’s over it hasn’t really added up to much and not much has been saved.  If Walken destroys the computer market, what does it mean for the rest of the world, us work-a-day schlubs who just walk into the office?  Well, probably not much except for a lot of dead millionaires. 

With that flawed reasoning, you have to wonder what you’re watching.  Well, you’re watching a lot of a good-looking stunts including a leap off the Eiffel Tower and a climactic fight atop the Golden Gate Bridge.  But what does it all mean?  What are the stakes.  Well, none I’m afraid.  You can’t really connect with the plot because it doesn’t make sense and you can’t really connect with Bond himself because you’re constantly worried that he’ll break his hip.  At least, I did.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1985) View IMDB Filed in: Action, James Bond