Tomorrow Never Dies

Tomorrow Never Dies

Pierce Brosnan returns for his second stint as James Bond (after GoldenEye), and he's doing it in high style with an invigorating cast of costars. It's only appropriate that a Bond film from 1997 would find Agent 007 pitted against a media mogul (Jonathan Pryce) who's going to start a global war (beginning with stolen nuclear missiles aimed at China) to create attention-grabbing headlines for his latest multimedia news channel. It's the information age run amok, and Bond must team up with a lovely and lethal agent from the Chinese External Security Force (played by Honk Kong action star Michelle Yeoh) to foil the madman's plot of global domination. Luckily for Bond, the villain's wife (Teri Hatcher) is one of his former lovers, and at the behest of his superior M (Judi Dench), 007 finds ample opportunity to exploit the connection. Although it bears some nagging similarities to many formulaic action films from the '90s, Tomorrow Never Dies (with a title song performed by Sheryl Crow) boasts enough grand-scale action and sufficiently intelligent plotting to suggest the Bond series has plenty of potential to survive into the next millennium. Armed with the usual array of gadgets (including a remote-controlled BMW), Brosnan settles into his role with acceptable flair, and the dynamic Yeoh provides a perfect balance to the sexism that once threatened to turn Bond into a politically incorrect anachronism. He's still Bond, to be sure, but he's saving the world with a bit more sophisticated finesse. In addition to theatrical trailers, this special edition DVD comes with a feature-length audio commentary by director Roger Spottiswoode, more commentary by stunt director Vic Armstrong and producer Michael G. Wilson, a storyboard overlay that compares action-sequence concepts with final footage, a 45-minute "Secrets of 007" featurette covering the evolution of the Bond character, and an isolated music-only track with an interview of composer David Arnold. Bond would be proud.--Jeff Shannon

Production: MGM Home Entertainment
  Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 6 wins & 9 nominations.
 
IMDB:
6.5
Metacritic:
52
Rotten Tomatoes:
57%
PG-13
Year:
1997
119
3,367 Views

[during an argument at MI6 headquarters]

Admiral Roebuck:
That's preposterous! We know exactly where that ship was positioned! The GPS system - Global Positioning Satellites do not lie!

M:
Yes, but our Singapore station picked up a mysterious signal - on the GPS frequency at the time of the attack. It could have sent that ship off course.

Roebuck:
I have a missing British frigate-

M:
I'm aware of that!

Roebuck:
And instead of decisive action, all you want to do is-

M:
My goal is to prevent World War III, Admiral, and I don't think sending an armada into the recovery area is the best way to do it.

Defense Minister:
Where exactly did this mysterious GPS signal come from?

M:
We're still investigating.

Roebuck:
"Investigating". With all due respect, M, sometimes I don't think you have the balls for this job!

M:
Perhaps. But the advantage is, I don't have to think with them all the time.

Defense Minister:
That's enough. Now where do we stand?

Roebuck:
It was an unprovoked attack held in international waters. We send in the fleet for recovery and prepare for full retaliation!

M:
Moderation. We investigate and stop short of sending the entire British Navy within 10 minutes of the world's largest air force.

Defense Minister:
When will our ships be in position?

Roebuck:
48 hours.

Defense Minister:
Great. The press are already screaming for blood; the last thing we want to do is escalate the situation.

James Bond:
[arrives with a copy of the Tomorrow newspaper] I'm afraid it may be too late to worry about that.

Defense Minister:
[reads the paper] "Seventeen British sailors murdered"?! "According to Vietnamese officials who recovered the bodies, the victims were riddled with the same ammunition used by the Chinese Air Force."

M:
Did you leak this?

Roebuck:
NO! This is the first I've heard of it.

Defense Minister:
Well, this settles it. We send in the fleet. M, you have 48 hours to investigate.

James Bond:
There is one strange thing. When I called our contact in Saigon, he said the Vietnamese only found our sailors three hours ago.

Charles Robinson:
How did they get the paper out so fast?

James Bond:
Somebody at Tomorrow knew before the Vietnamese government did.

M:
How much do you know about Elliot Carver, 007?

James Bond:
Worldwide media baron. Able to topple governments with a single broadcast. Carver owns that newspaper, Tomorrow.

M:
I didn't want to discuss this in front of the Minister, but that mysterious signal came from one of Carver's satellites. The PM would have my head if he knew we were investigating him. [hands Bond a document containing his mission] I'm sending you to Hamburg, 007. We've arranged for you to be invited tonight to a party at Carver's media centre.

Charles Robinson:
They're celebrating the launch of a new satellite, because now he has the ability to reach every human being on Earth.

M:
Except the Chinese, who've refused broadcast rights.

Moneypenny:
[rolls down her window and displays documents] James, your ticket, cover story and rental car reservation. Sign here, please.

M:
[as Bond signs one of the documents] I believe you once had a relationship with Carver's wife, Paris?

James Bond:
That was a long time ago, M. Before she was married. I didn't realise it was public knowledge.

Moneypenny:
Queen and country, James.

M:
Your job is to find out whether it was Carver or someone in his organisation who sent that ship off course and why. Use your relationship with Mrs. Carver if necessary.

James Bond:
I doubt if she'll remember me.

M:
Remind her. Then pump her for information.

Moneypenny:
You'll just have to decide how much pumping is needed, James.

James Bond:
If only that were true of you and I, Moneypenny.

[Carver's men have caught Bond and Wai Lin in Vietnam, and brought them to Carver's tower in Saigon]

Elliot Carver:
You may have seen the General in the hallway just now but perhaps, with all your jetting around, you've not had a chance to peruse today's headlines. [He brings up several newspaper scans on the large screens covering the wall. The first, a European English-language edition of Tomorrow, Carver's newspaper, bears the headline CRISIS GROWS. Carver changes to another European English-language edition of Tomorrow, this one's headline reading CHINA WARNS OF WAR. Carver brings up a third news headline. This one, in a different font to Tomorrow, has the caption THE EMPIRE WILL STRIKE BACK, flanked by the flags of the United Kingdom and China] I rather like the last one. It isn't even mine!

James Bond:
I never believe what I read in the press anyway.

Carver:
Ha! Therein lies your problem, Mr. Bond. You see, we're both men of action, but your era and Miss Lin's is passing. Words are the new weapons, satellites the new artillery.

Bond:
And you become the new Supreme Allied Commander?

Carver:
Exactly! Caesar had his legions, Napoleon had his armies, I have my divisions. TV, news, magazines. And by midnight I'll have reached and influenced more people than anyone in the history of this planet, [points up] save God Himself. And the best He ever managed was the Sermon on the Mount.

Bond:
You really are quite insane.

Carver:
The distance between insanity and genius is measured only by success.


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