James Bond fans won’t have to experience any serious absence of their favorite secret agent even though 007’s new thriller, No Time to Die, has had its release delayed by the coronavirus pandemic from this month to November.
Fortunately, in addition to Pluto TV’s 24/7 Bond channel (which offers up 18 films with limited commercials), Amazon Prime in the US is now making 21 Bond movies — basically everything up until the current Daniel Craig era — available starting April 1, all in 4K Ultra-High Definition. There’s currently no word on whether or not Amazon UK will follow suit.
The movies are (in alphabetical order):
- A View to a Kill (1985)
- Diamonds Are Forever (1971)
- Die Another Day (2002)
- Dr. No (1962)
- For Your Eyes Only (1981)
- From Russia with Love (1964)
- Goldeneye (1995)
- Goldfinger (1964)
- Licence to Kill (1989)
- Live and Let Die (1973)
- Moonraker (1979)
- Never Say Never Again (1983)
- Octopussy (1983)
- On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)
- The Living Daylights (1987)
- The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)
- The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
- The World is Not Enough (1999)
- Thunderball (1965)
- Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
- You Only Live Twice (1967)
When it comes to Bond films, of course, everyone has their personal favorites and clunkers, as well as their preferred actors in the role. But from where we’re standing, each of the different eras available here have something to offer. For starters, you can’t go wrong with the original big-screen Bond, Sean Connery, and his first three films (Dr. No, From Russia with Love, Goldfinger), all of which set the standard for the decades of movies to come.
Also included here is the 1983 outlier, Never Say Never Again, which was made after a longstanding legal battle enabled Connery to return to the role one more time in a remake of Thunderball that is not considered part of the official canon.
As for the other Bonds, one-and-done George Lazenby shines in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, a one-time cult classic that is now widely considered one of the best in the series. For Roger Moore fans, the epic The Spy Who Loved Me and grittier For Your Eyes Only are generally acclaimed as the high points of his run. Timothy Dalton shines in both his outings, but we prefer the brutal License to Kill to the somewhat middling The Living Daylights. As for Pierce Brosnan, his four films were somewhat uneven, but his debut, GoldenEye, has gradually found its way into the upper tier.
Bond fans tend to treat all the films equally, however, so the four of you who do consider The Man with the Golden Gun a classic (it does feature Christopher Lee as the villain, after all) will be taken care of as well. Whichever of the films you prefer, Amazon has you covered, and the UHD images should look especially poppin’ on your living room screen.
As for the rest of Amazon’s new April additions, last year’s surreal, shocking (and funny) The Lighthouse (which you can watch on Amazon here) arrives and must be consumed as soon as possible, while we also highly recommend the 1999 Hollywood (semi) biopic Gods and Monsters (which you can watch on Amazon here), and Will Smith’s version of the often-filmed horror classic I Am Legend (2007).
If you’re a silent film fan, then you can’t miss Broken Blossoms (1919), The Mark of Zorro (1920) (on Amazon), and The Lost World (1925). The former, a romance, was the first film ever released by United Artists, while Zorro was the first of many adaptations of the classic swashbuckling novel. The Lost World featured pioneering stop-motion animation from Willis O’Brien, who went on to animate King Kong (1933).
Elsewhere, The Sender (1982) is a creepy psychic horror thriller that needs to be seen more (watch it on Amazon here), Dr. T & The Women (2000) is lesser but still worthwhile Robert Altman, while Gator (1976) is a so-so action film that nevertheless served as the directorial debut of star Burt Reynolds. And if you need to bring out the tissues for a good cry, then how can you go wrong with 1992’s The Bodyguard?