Time: 110 mins.
I wasn't a big Bond fan until the films were released on DVD. I now know what the fuss is all about. At least regarding Sean Connery. My two forays into the collection so far have been GOLDFINGER and DR. NO. The former definitely has better action sequences, cooler gadgets, meaner villains and a more sophisticated Bond, but DR. NO has a sexy, down-and-dirty quality about it that's hard to deny. Bond is forced to rely on his brains and brawn and you get a generous sample of each. DR. NO was chosen to be the inaugural Bond film because the producers realized it'd be the easiest novel to translate into film. It has an exotic location Jamaica and limited need for special effects. This film is all about introducing Connery as James Bond and it succeeds with flying colors. The first 10 minutes tells you all about this suave, lady-killer that you need to know...and believe me it will have you salivating for more.
DR. NO doesn't have the most complicated plot in the world, but at least it makes sense. Bond is sent to Jamaica to discover what happened to an operative stationed there, now missing. He's not exactly welcomed with open arms by the "natives" and his search soon turns him to a private island owned by the mysterious Dr. No. After several attempts on his life, Bond decides to take matters into his own hands and has one of the locals, Quarrel, take him to the island. There he meets his third female conquest, a shell collector named Honey Ryder. Dr. No doesn't like visitors and the trio is quickly on a run for their lives. Of course, Bond must meet his opponent face-to-face. With Honey in tow, he learns Dr. No's evil plan. Surprise, surprise, it's world domination through nuclear power. Bond is fairly unimpressed. Same old story. In the end, Bond saves the world and beds the girl twice.
Unlike the Bond films to follow, DR. NO takes place in one location and they really make the most of it. Jamaica is extremely beautiful and by focusing the action there, more emphasis is placed on the story and developing the James Bond mystique. The film doesn't have any fancy gadgets either, so Bond has nothing to fall back on except his brains and brawn, which he uses quite frequently to subdue the bad guys and rescue the ladies. The one car chase is pretty pathetic, using the completely unconvincing rear-projection technique. It's very obvious Connery is in a car on a soundstage, but it still manages to be somewhat exciting.