Tuesday, March 27, 2007
I am currently re-watching all of the James Bond films in order after recently purchasing all of the most recent MGM deluxe box sets. I must say that it is fascinating to watch them again this way from start to finish and I will write more on these at a later date.
I will say one aspect that I am really enjoying is sifting through the wealth of bonus materials that are available on disc two of each film. Some of my favorites have been the vintage tv promotional materials for the films. Some, like the David Wopler produced WORLD OF JAMES BOND, are just basically a compiled collection of narrated clips but other such as the deliciously strange and slightly ridiculous WELCOME TO JAPAN, MR. BOND have some surprising delights.
The main delight of the YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE promotional short WELCOME TO JAPAN was the sight of the unbilled Kate O'Mara, whom tv fans will know from her work in everything from DOCTOR WHO to THE AVENGERS. She has been a favorite of mine since I first laid eyes on her one Sunday afternoon as a youth watching an edited version of Hammer's THE VAMPIRE LOVERS. I believe seeing Kate, Madeline Smith and of course Ingrid Pitt in this film probably solidified my lifelong love for all things British and female.
Hammer fans will also remember Kate from Jimmy Sangster's odd 1970 film THE HORROR OF FRANKENSTEIN opposite Ralph Bates.
Seeing her pop up in this strange little Bond promotional short was a major treat and made one of the, in my opinion, lesser Bond films feel a little sweeter.