Review by Dean Allen
In Brief: The name's Bond, James Bond. 2002 marks the 40th anniversary
of the birth of the cinematic legacy that is Bond, with the 20th
film in the series released, Die
Another Day. A celebration is in order and so The Legacy gives
us an exhaustedly researched, coffee table book on the cinematic
and social importance of a man we like to call 007.
Review: Those familiar with the Bond collection on DVD will recognise
the names of John Cork and Bruce Scivally as responsible for the
excellent documentaries that dominate the special feature sections.
They obviously know their Bond and The Legacy companion book proves
it once and for all. As Cork puts it in his introduction, 'Bond
changed my life.'
The Legacy forgoes solely concentrating on behind the scenes
details by answering the bigger question. How has James Bond changed
It may seem supercilious to suggest so, but Cork and Scivally
explain how 007 has changed the mythology of the Cold War, the
way that the CIA and MI6 operate and how the franchise has dominated
cinema, with new methods of marketing and franchising.
This isn't your average production line cinema book. With its
detailed account of the shifting of culture within the 50 years
of Bond's life and how Bond had to change, The Legacy offers more
depth and serves as a fantastic reminder of how culture and crazes
Witness Bond in the Roger Moore era struggling to keep up with
new culture by using current cinematic crazes of Blacksploitation
(Live and Let Die); kung-fu (The Man With The Golden Gun); and
Star Wars (Moonraker).
Whilst the text is in-depth and of a high quality - Cork and
Scivally know how to spin a good yarn - it is the lavish, high
gloss picture content that attracts the eye initially. With what
appears to be complete access to the Eon archive, The Legacy is
stuffed packed with great images from the films, behind-the-scenes
snaps, storyboards, vehicle and gadget schematics, poster images
and artwork, and high action film stills. As far as Bond books
go, this is the only one to buy.
Verdict: A touch expensive it may be - although shop around,
as the price can be heavily reduced - this is the authorative
tome on Bond. Not only filled with amazing images, but with some
quality text, reading it makes you want to watch all of the Bond
James Bond The Legacy (John Cork and Bruce Scivally) - Published
by Boxtree; Priced £35