Diamonds Are Forever

dir. Guy Hamilton

TIFF Cinematheque - Retrospective

TIFF Cinematheque - Retrospective

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Sean Connery made a one-off return to the Bond franchise with this light-hearted and unabashedly campy entry, in which 007 heads to Las Vegas to foil his arch-enemy Blofeld's plot to blackmail the superpowers with a deadly, diamond-powered space laser.

Sean Connery was lured back to the Bond fold for this one-off return, which goes for light-hearted abandon after the seriousness of its Lazenbyed predecessor. After seemingly finishing off his arch-enemy Blofeld (Charles Gray) in a molten mud bath, Bond is sent to investigate a smuggling operation that is ferrying diamonds from North Africa through Amsterdam to Las Vegas. Arriving in Sin City in the company of brash Yankee smuggler Tiffany Case (Jill St. John), Bond discovers that Blofeld is alive and kicking, having taken over the technology empire of a Howard Hughes-like billionaire recluse in order to manufacture a deadly, diamond-powered space laser. Unabashedly frivolous and supremely silly, Diamonds plays up the camp aspects of the series with Gray's swish Blofeld (who at one point even dresses in drag) and mincing, perfumed killers Messrs. Kidd (Putter Smith) and Wint (Bruce Glover — father of Crispin!). Returning to the role for the "last" time (until the "unofficial" 1983 Bond vehicle Never Say Never Again), Connery engagingly smirks his way through some comically outlandish predicaments, including a desert escape at the wheel of a moon buggy and a drubbing at the hands of lithe Amazonian bodyguards Bambi and Thumper.