There’s not the least sign of staleness in this third sample of the Bond 007 formula. Some liberties have been taken with Ian Fleming’s original novel but without diluting its flavor. The mood is set before the credits show up, with Sean Connery making an arrogant pass at a chick and spying a thug creeping up from behind; he’s reflected in the femme’s eyeballs. So he heaves the heavy into bathful of water and connects it deftly to a handy supply of electricity.
Thereafter the plot gets its teeth into the real business, which is the duel between Bond and Goldfinger. The latter plans to plant an atomic bomb in Fort Knox and thus contaminate the US hoard of the yellow stuff so that it can’t be touched, and thus increase tenfold the value of his own gold, earned by hard international smuggling.
Connery repeats his suave portrayal of the punch-packing Bond, who can find his way around the wine-list as easily as he can negotiate a dame. But, if backroom boys got star billing, it’s deserved by Ken Adam, who has designed the production with a wealth of enticing invention. There’s a ray-gun that cuts through any metal, and threatens to carve Bond down the middle. There’s Goldfinger’s automobile – cast in solid gold. And his farm is stocked with furniture that moves at the press of a button.
Honor Blackman makes a fine, sexy partner for Bond. As Pussy Galore, Goldfinger’s pilot for his private plane, she does not take things lying down – she’s a judo expert who throws Bond until the final k.o. when she’s tumbled herself.
Gert Frobe, too, is near-perfect casting as the resourceful Goldfinger, an amoral tycoon who treats gold-cornering as a business like any other.
1964: Best Sound Effects