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Live and Let Die (1973): 8th Bond Movie

Live and Let Die is the eighth Bond film in order, but the first one in which the British actor Roger Moore began his adventurous ride in the role of James Bond, agent 007, definitively replacing Sean Connery, who last appeared in the previous film Diamonds Are Forever (1971).


The British secret service MI6 is monitoring suspicious operations of Doctor Kananga, ruler of the small Caribbean island of San Monique. Within a short period, three of its agents are mysteriously killed, one of whom was temporarily assigned to the CIA. It also raises suspicion that Kananga frequently travels to New York.

James Bond is dispatched to investigate the death of the first agent. He was observing a local funeral ritual when approached by a local who, when asked "Whose funeral is this?", replied "Yours!" and stabbed the agent in the back.

Upon arriving in San Monique, Bond is supposed to meet with his friend and colleague Felix Leiter from the CIA. However, his driver is shot while driving by a passing, specially modified car. Bond was supposed to be killed in the accident.

The license plate of the murderer's car eventually leads Bond to Mr. Big, a ruthless and cunning gangster who operates a network of Fillet of Soul restaurants in the USA.

Bond also meets the beautiful Solitaire in one of his restaurants in Harlem, who has a rare gift of interpreting and seeing the future using tarot cards.

She even predicted the appearance of James Bond: "I see a man (shot of Bond), traveling swiftly (sitting in a plane)...". One of the cards she turns over is "The Lovers"... The role of Solitaire was played by the youthful Jane Seymour, best known in our country for her role in the series Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.

Mr. Big is none other than Kananga himself in disguise, which Bond does not know at this point. His henchmen capture Bond and Mr. Big orders them without hesitation or preamble to kill him in the street. However, Bond manages to surprise and overpower them with the help of a retractable ladder at the emergency exit stairs.

James Bond flies back to San Monique, where he contacts CIA double agent Rosie Carver. He and Rosie then set out with Bond's friend Quarrel Junior, who takes them by boat to Solitaire's home.

Bond suspects Rosie of working for Kananga, but she is remotely shot by Kananga before she can confirm it to him. Bond sets up a small ruse for Solitaire, in which he presents her with a deck of cards containing only "The Lovers" symbols. Solitaire then believes that her fate is to be seduced, which Bond does, and also helps Bond get to Doctor Kananga. However, with the loss of her virginity, Solitaire loses her ability to see the future.

James Bond and Solitaire fly to New Orleans, where Bond is captured by Mr. Big, who reveals his true face to him, and Bond realizes that Mr. Big and Kananga are one and the same person.

Kananga also reveals his true plans. He cultivates poppies on extensive plantations to produce heroin. Kananga plans to distribute a huge amount of heroin for free in America through his network of Fillet of Soul restaurants. He has several goals in mind: to create an army of new addicts, eliminate competition, and after its fall, double the prices to more than compensate for the previous investment.

Solitaire served Kananga for predicting the future. Kananga then asks Bond if he slept with Solitaire. Bond, however, replies that gentlemen don't talk about certain things. Kananga prepares a small test, during which Solitaire has only two options. She doesn't guess correctly, and Kananga discovers that she has lost her exceptional ability, which he doesn't reveal at first, but then treats it as worthless and hands her over to be sacrificed to Baron Samedi.

Bond is accompanied through Kananga's crocodile farm by Kananga's one-armed servant Tee Hee Johnson, who throws meat to the pets with his prosthetic arm, which the crocodiles bit off. At an unguarded moment, Bond escapes on a retractable pier and leaves Bond on a small island in the middle of the crocodiles.

Bond scatters the rest of the meat to the crocodiles and then performs his daring feat, when he crosses to the shore on the backs of crocodiles. Bond sets the farm on fire and escapes on a fast boat, pursued not only by Kananga's men but also by a local eccentric sheriff named J.W. Pepper from the Louisiana State Police.

Upon returning to San Monique, Bond rescues Solitaire from a voodoo ceremony, stuffing Samedi into a coffin full of snakes in the process. Bond and Solitaire then escape to Kananga's underground lair, where Kananga captures them again and, tied to a crane, intends to lower them to his sharks.

Bond manages to attract a gas pellet to the sharks using magnetic watches. He manages to free himself and, during the fight with Kananga, they fall into the water full of sharks. Bond inserts the pellet into Kananga's mouth. Kananga inflates, flies to the ceiling, and explodes.

After completing his mission, Bond and Solitaire board a train. On the train, they are surprised by Kananga's man with a prosthetic arm, Tee Hee. During the scuffle with Bond, his arm gets stuck on the window latch and Bond throws him out of the window by his feet.

The film ends with a shot of Samedi, who laughs loudly, sitting on the front of the locomotive.

Bond Song

The title song from the film Live And Let Die by Paul McCartney & Wings is a dynamic and electrifying composition that has left an indelible mark on the James Bond soundtrack repertoire. With its pulsating rhythm, soulful vocals, and exhilarating orchestration, this iconic track captures the essence of the high-octane action and intrigue synonymous with the Bond franchise. Paul McCartney's unmistakable voice combined with the band's signature rock sound creates an unforgettable auditory experience that perfectly complements the film's thrilling sequences and larger-than-life characters. Live And Let Die stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of Bond music, captivating audiences with its timeless appeal and irresistible energy.


Role Actor Role Description
James Bond Roger Moore Main character, British MI6 secret agent.
M Bernard Lee Head of British MI6 Secret Service.
Moneypenny Lois Maxwell M's assistant.
Felix Leiter David Hedison CIA agent and James Bond's friend.
Solitaire Jane Seymour Clairvoyant and protege of the criminal Dr. Kananga, later Bond's lover.
Dr. Kananga Yaphet Kotto Criminal and drug dealer.
Tee Hee Johnson Julius Harris Dr. Kananga's henchman with a metal arm.
Baron Samedi Geoffrey Holder Mystical figure who allegedly resurrects after death.
J.W. Pepper Clifton James Eccentric American sheriff.
Rosie Carver Gloria Hendry CIA agent and temporary ally of Bond.
Quarrel Jr. Roy Stewart Son of Quarrel, accompanying Bond on the mission.

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Based on the original Czech article: Žít a nechat zemřít (1973) – 8. bondovka.