The World is Not Enough (1999)

the world is not enough IMDb

The World is Not Enough is notable for exactly one reason: Denise Richards. Whoever decided to cast her as a nuclear physicist is in the wrong line of work. I’m not saying that Richards alone completely ruins this movie for me, but she is a big part of my dissatisfaction.

I do feel terrible bagging on Richards so much. She actually seems like a very nice person. It’s just a pity that she was so horribly miscast and didn’t have the self awareness to say, “Hey, I don’t think I’m going to be believable in this role.” Another role in the same movie? Yeah, she probably could have nailed it. She is gorgeous and not completely lacking in acting talent. It’s just that her talents are not quite good enough to convince me that she holds an advanced degree in science, even in the James Bond world where far sillier things have happened.

But it isn’t just Denise Richards that makes this a poorly executed 007 film. The plot is overly complicated and horribly formulaic. I’m not opposed to the Bond franchise adding some sophistication and intelligence to its stories, that’s just not what’s happening here. At the same time there are no real surprises. The twists can be seen a mile away, despite everyone’s best efforts to distract the audience with boring action sequences. The entire script feels lazy, with the shining example being Denise Richard’s character’s name: Christmas Jones. It’s clear this name was chosen specifically to include a handful of innuendo laden jokes. I know this is kind of a hallmark of Bond films, but this one seems especially bad. Like so bad, that it makes me miss the days of Plenty O’Toole and Pussy Galore.

Really, the best parts of this movie are Bond’s bubble skiing jacket that helps him and a lady survive an avalanche (I’ve always loved the cheesier gadgets), and the title song performed by Garbage. “The World is Not Enough” is up there with the greats, and was my favorite Bond song until “Skyfall” was released. It’s just a shame that the movie didn’t live up to its song.

Rating: D-

Wow, this was such a terrible film. Highlighted by the fact that some moron decided to cast Denise Richards as a nuclear physicist named Christmas Jones. Now I can suspend belief in my movies, but not enough to believe that Denise Richards is anything other than a prom queen.

Pierce Brosnan’s third Bond adventure has him investigating the death of an oil tycoon. The main suspect is a terrorist who can’t feel pain named Renard (Robert Carlyle). Bond is sent to protect Elektra King (Sophie Marceau), the tycoon’s heiress daughter, as she will likely be his next target. When some nuclear weapons are stolen by Renard, Bond must team up with a nuclear scientist (Richards) to uncover what Renard plans to do with them, and how Elektra is involved in all of this.

As I said, this is one of the more unbelievable Bond films. That’s quite the statement considering there were multiple films featuring a henchmen with a giant metal mouth. Denise Richards as a scientist is more unbelievable than a hundred outlandish villains. Her name is laughable also, only added so that Bond can make a crude joke when he eventually beds her. I know this is very common for Bond girls to have dumb names, but this one seems to take it too far.

Brosnan is still fun as Bond, his gadgets are kind of lame though. The best one being a jacket that inflates into a giant bulletproof ball to protect him from incoming bad guys.

I’m not sure what else to write about this film. It is a terrible Bond film, and by far the worst one Brosnan made. One thing I did notice for our Australian readers, keep your eye out for one of Elektra’s bodyguards. He was Vulcan on the short-lived Australian version of Gladiators. Noticing him was probably the most fun I had watching this film.

Rating: D-

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