Roger Moore’s Bond: All 7 Movies Ranked

Early this week we sadly lost Sir Roger Moore, one of the great suave actors. Instead of trying to compare him to the other actors who played Bond (pointless), I’ll instead rank his Bond movies, from least best to most awesome (slightly less pointless).

Less criticism and more celebration of a great actor who gave us many great movies.

Live and Let Die - 1973

This movie has not aged well. Film Crit Hulk explains it better (scroll down a bit).

It does have one of the best Bond theme songs (and the GnR version was just as good, if not better).

The Man with the Golden Gun - 1974

Better than its predecessor is not much praise. I wish Moore had better movies to be Bond in, does that make sense? He’ll get a few, but the mid-70’s were not a good time for Bond movies.

However, it does have one of the greatest stunts ever put on film (which is almost ruined by the scene around it). They actually did twist-jump that AMC Hornet. Incredible.

Octopussy - 1983

This movie is bizarre, even for a Bond movie. If The Spy Who Loves Me and For Your Eyes Only are a pair, given how similar they feel in many ways, this movie’s pair is Moonraker which isn’t a compliment. That said…

Moonraker - 1979

I spent a lot of years hating this movie. It is filled with way too many campy sci-fi winks and nods to take it seriously (Close Encounters theme on the entry panel? please).

But in re-watching it recently, it’s actually not that bad. Sure, it’s a blatant attempt to cash in on that sci-fi money of the late 70’s post-Star Wars excitement, but if you’re willing to accept a car that can turn into a submarine this doesn’t seem too far a stretch.

A View to a Kill - 1985

I guess the issue here is this movie should be so much better. Yes, it’s got Walken and Grace Jones, and yes it’s got the absurdity of Moonraker, but it’s just rather… meh. But then, I’d take this one over most of the Brosnan Bond movies, so there’s that.

Also, that Duran Duran song was excellent.

For Your Eyes Only - 1981

Though lacking the over-the-top-ness of either of its predecessors, FYEO is a reasonably solid Bond movie. It isn’t bad which so many of them are. It works better than, say, Spectre. A lot of it does feel like a re-hash of The Spy Who Loves Me though, which if you’re going to crib from a Bond movie, you could do far worse.

Also, in fairness, I have a soft spot for this movie since I was always fascinated by the climatic set piece, and last year finally made it to Meteora in Greece where they shot it. Here’s a 360 video I took from the top:

The Spy Who Loved Me – 1977

This is one of my favorite Bond movies. I’d put it third after Skyfall and Living Daylights, and no, not just for the Lotus that turns into a submarine.

But overall, this is everything a Bond movie should be (imo). Lots of cool locations, cool gadgets, big stakes, fantastic action set pieces (that ship set was AMAZING). Easily Moore’s best outing as Bond. He’s cool, suave, capable, and even though he gets a bit roughed up, always in control. This is a shining example of what a Bond movie can be, but sadly, so often aren’t.

So thank you Sir Roger Moore, for your many great movies, and great movie moments even if the movies themselves weren’t great.

davidbe's picture

Obviously this is all subjective, but I agree with the overall trend of your picks though not the exact ranking. My biggest difference is that I would rank For Your Eyes Only as the best Roger Moore Bond by a wide margin. Since you put it second, we are not too far apart.

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