The World is Not Enough closes out the 20th century in which Bond was born. Sadly, it was the final appearance of Desmond Llewelyn as Q. Who in a cruel bit of irony died in a car accident after the film’s release. Llewelyn appeared in 17 Bond films and starred alongside 5 different 007’s. The longest tenure of any actor in the franchise.
The World is Not Enough is the nineteenth film in the long running franchise, and is once again not based on any book by Ian Fleming. Although the title does derive from the family motto of the Bond family. It’s one of the more lower regarded Bond films. Due to one very specific reason. The casting of 27 year old Denise Richards as a nuclear physicist. Her performance earned the series its first Razzie award…
The Mission: Protect daughter of assassinated billionaire and defuse international nuclear power struggle
Gadgets & Vehicles: BMW Z8 (equipped with surface-to-air missiles, targeting display, and keychain remote control), Q Boat (equipped with missiles and GPS tracking), Detonator Spectacles, X-Ray Shades, Ski Jacket, Multifunction Lock-pick, Grappling/Torch Wristwatch
Bond Girls: Christmas Jones, Elektra King, Molly Warmflash
Bond Villains: Renard, Mister Bullion, Sasha Davidov, Gabor, Giulietta da Vinci
Analysis: The World is Not Enough has enough thrills to counter its more glaring problems. Current news stories about oil companies attempting to control an untapped reserve provided the motivation for the film’s Bond villain. Oil soaked naked women are of course used in the opening credits sequence. The main theme is pure garbage. Literally, as it was sung by the band Garbage. The song itself isn’t bad. The villain seems to be Renard. A high-tech terrorist who plans to increase the cost of oil through the means of a nuclear meltdown. As explained by an MI6 doctor (that Bond promptly seduces), Renard is unable to feel pain due to a bullet lodged in his brain. After a failed attempt to kidnap the daughter of an oil tycoon.
Following his apparent assassination by Renard, Bond is tasked with protecting the aforementioned daughter. Elektra King is attractive and intelligent. More than earning Bond’s affection. Q provides 007 with x-ray glasses (that he briefly uses to see through women’s clothes) and many other gadgets one final time. The strange thing is, Llewellyn must have known he had little time left. Since his one scene involves a replacement named R (played by John Cleese) that Q is training. Even at 85, Q was just as snarky as ever. Leaving Bond with a heartfelt final lesson. Considering the use of nuclear power, Bond teams up with a nuclear physicist named Christmas Jones.
Along with her sexy Lara Croft outfit, Denise Richards is still just the girl from Wild Things. Her age or supermodel good looks do not fit her profession at all. The name Christmas just adds insult to injury. As it leaves room for plenty of cringy jokes. Really it’s the villain reveal that makes up for her presence. Elektra King turns out to be the real mastermind behind everything. Making her the first true Bond girl villainess. Showing her to be calculating and even capable of torture (she even captures M). Her death brings out Pierce Brosnan’s best Bond performance. As he carries out his coldest kill to date. Save for Denise Richards, The World is Not Enough is enough to satisfy.
James Bond will return in Die Another Day