On Her Majesty's Secret Service Anniversary Wreath

I'm going to post more to my Dribbble, but first I gotta catch up. This is a post from December, 2019...

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service(OHMSS) turns 50 years old today! The infamously despised and forgotten Bond film has become a fan favorite thanks to home video. OHMSS stars George Lazenby as Bond and was the first official Bond film to feature an actor playing everyone’s favorite secret agent that wasn’t Sean Connery. I think audiences simply weren’t able to accept another actor as Bond. I often wonder what would have happened if Roger Moore came to the franchise before Lazenby-if people would have rejected him the same way they rejected Lazenby. George turned down the opportunity to reprise his role in favor of pursuing a career in low-budget counter-culture movies like Easy Rider. It was a mistake, of course, and his stardom collapsed before he could capitalize on the prestige of being in a Bond film.

Personally, OHMSS is one of my favorite Bond films. It’s one of the few movies that is faithful to the book. In OHMSS we see a more fallible, human take on James Bond. But the main feature for me is how the film was made. OHMSS was directed by Peter Hunt who edited the Connery Bond films. He brings a tremendous amount of style to the film and it’s easily one of the best-looking entries in the franchise. In 2013 director Steven Soderbergh wrote an essay about how much he loved the film. His words describe the visual style better than I ever could so I will leave you with a quote from the essay...

“Shot to shot, this movie is beautiful in a way none of the other Bond films are—the anamorphic compositions are relentlessly arresting—and the editing patterns of the action sequences are totally bananas; it’s like Peter Hunt (who cut the first five Bond films) took all the ideas of the French new wave and blended them with Eisenstein in a Cuisinart to create a grammar that still tops today’s how fast can you cut aesthetic, because the difference here is that each of the shots—no matter how short—are real shots, not just additional coverage from the hosing-it-down school of action, so there is a unification of the aesthetic of the first unit and the second unit that doesn’t exist in any other Bond film.”

Bryan E. West
Welcome to my design portfolio on Dribbble

More by Bryan E. West

View profile