How about “the gun barrel sequence of every James Bond movie, ever?” C’mon. It’s not like you were going to get much done on a Friday anyway.
You can tell that the first few use a stand-in for Sean Connery, and that the producers only ever reshot the sequence when a new Bond came in. Filmmakers knew that they could get away with this stuff back in the days before home video. It’s like they had a different relationship with the audience; they knew that an individual was only going to be able to watch this movie a few times, and only at 24 frames per second. Today, Quicktime Player is like a CSI crime lab. If the film editor ever told the director or the director ever told the censor “Don’t worry…it goes by so fast that nobody will ever notice it” you’ll find out pretty damned quick!
I think about the fact that a movie would be around for a little while and then disappear for years. Now that Turner Classic Movies can screen an all-day marathon of a certain actor or director, the greats seem even more so. Marathons prove that Frank Capra, Billy Wilder, and John Ford each kept exploring and inventing throughout their careers. With other actors and directors, the ability to see all of their work in a single stretch leaves you thinking that their “signature style” is just a collection of reliable tics and tricks from which they never tried to escape.
Call it The McDonalds Syndrome. I have long held that a Big Mac Meal is one of the tastiest things on the planet, provided you haven’t had it in at least a month. It’s junk, but it targets our pleasure centers with a certain amount of precision and flair.
If you last had a Big Mac a week ago, it’s just okay. If you ate McDonalds yesterday, you’ll probably end up wondering why the hell you keep doing this to yourself.
And so it goes with the Bond movies. If you haven’t seen a Bond film in a couple of years, it’s one of the most entertaining nights you can spend at the movies. If Netflix recommends “Diamonds Are Forever” because it knows you watched “Thunderball” last week…it’s just okay. A James Bond marathon on cable will put you off of talking moving pictures entirely.