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TIMOTHY DALTON PLAYS JAMES BOND IN 'THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS'

Timothy Dalton in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS Year: 1987 Rating: ****

While Timothy Dalton seemed more like another cool spy that James Bond would work with, and might even turn into a villain with such an unpredictable temperament and sneaky demeanor, he was the one James Bond where personality didn't matter, making it all about the mission...

Beginning with his first of two features that, despite the trendy outcry over the past decade's excessive use of gadgetry, still kept plenty of leftover attributes from the Roger Moore era including the same actors for M and of course Q, here providing car with a built-in laser, torpedo rockets, and wheels that become skis...

Maryam d'Abo in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS

There's a little bit of worthwhile espionage, too, but the plot's really a non-plot where what he was hired to do... helping a Russian general defect... goes so wrong it takes a lot of running around (backed by a dated 1980's techno-drum track) to get out of it, dodging Andreas Wisniewski as a standout villain's-thug...

All while protecting Russian cellist Maryam d'Abo, more a sidekick than Bond Girl since she's there through an entire movie that only wanes after too many locations are visited (especially the Middle East), when the twists become confused, the action redundant... then again all Bond films, no matter who's in the lead, ware out their welcome after about 90-minutes, which would have been the perfect length for this particular "back to basics" approach.

Timothy Dalton in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS
Timothy Dalton in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS
Timothy Dalton in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS with Maryam d'Abo


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