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The Living Daylights (1987): 15th Bond Movie

The Living Daylights is the 15th James Bond film and the first to feature Timothy Dalton as James Bond, agent 007. After seven consecutive Bond films, he succeeded Roger Moore as the record holder. Agent 007 is tasked with ensuring the smooth defection of high-ranking KGB officer General Georgi Koskov to the West. However, the situation becomes complicated, and later it turns out that everything is not as it seems at first glance.


In the opening scene, during a training exercise of the 00 section in Gibraltar, agent 004 is killed by falling off a cliff. His killer first sends him a mysterious message via a rope and then cuts it off. Bond catches up with the car of the fleeing murderer and kills him.

The defection of General Koskov is supposed to take place during a concert in Bratislava. Koskov is guarded by KGB agents and snipers. General Koskov explicitly requested Bond as a counter-sniper. During the break, Koskov escapes through a window in the toilet.

Bond's companion Saunders notices that the cellist from the orchestra is the KGB sniper in the opposite window. Bond finds her behavior suspicious and unprofessional, so instead of obeying the order to kill her, he only shoots the gun out of her hand. For this, M later scolds him. Koskov gets into Bond's car and tells him that women make the best KGB snipers. He asks if Bond killed her, to which he does not respond.

Koskov is being searched for, and he panics a bit as he tries to get across the border. Bond takes him to the gas pipeline, where contact Rosika Miklosova awaits them. Koskov is then smuggled into Austria in a specially modified pipe cleaning barrel, which they call a "pig", and they drive him through the Trans-Siberian gas pipeline, and from Austria, they fly him to Great Britain by fighter jet.

In the car, Saunders tells Bond that M will announce that Bond deliberately disobeyed the order to kill the sniper. Bond replies that he only kills professionals, and that "the girl didn't know one end of the rifle from the other."

Koskov informs the British Secret Service MI6 that under the new leadership of General Leonid Pushkin, the KGB has returned to its old practices of "Smert Shpionam" (Death to Spies). He claims that Pushkin has become power-hungry and compares him to a second Stalin. MI6's joy from the well-planned and executed action does not last long. Koskov does not enjoy his freedom for long. Immediately afterward, he is kidnapped directly from under the protection of the British Secret Service, and as expected, he is back in Moscow.

Bond is tasked with following General Pushkin to the Moroccan port city of Tangier and killing him to prevent further killings of agents and escalation of tensions between the Soviet Union and the West. Bond, who knows Pushkin from before, initially doubts Koskov's accusations against him. However, he eventually accepts the task when he discovers that the murderer of agent 004 left a note at the scene saying "Smert Shpionam." However, he wants to verify several things first, especially the mysterious sniper. For the journey, Q gives him the typical Bond car, a specially modified Aston Martin.

Bond returns to Bratislava to search for the cellist, whose name is Kara Milova. He finds out that Koskov's defection to the West was staged and that Milova, the alleged KGB sniper, is actually his girlfriend. Bond convinces Milova that he is a friend of Koskov and persuades her to go with him to Vienna, where she will meet him.

Meanwhile, General Pushkin meets with arms dealer Brad Whitaker, a war-obsessed fanatic, and informs him that the KGB is backing out of the arms deal Koskov made with Whitaker. He also demands the return of the $50 million advance. Later, Whitaker meets with Koskov and tells him that Pushkin is canceling the deal. Koskov suggests that Bond be given new evidence - the killing of another British agent - to expedite Pushkin's elimination.

During their stay with Milova at a fair in Vienna, Bond meets Saunders again, who confides in him that the defection was a debacle and that Milova is Koskov's girlfriend, whom Koskov bought a cello named Octopussy (Stradivarius) in New York. He asks Bond to investigate where Koskov got so much money. Saunders finds out that Whitaker paid for the cello. However, as he leaves, he is killed by Necros, Koskov's and Whitaker's assassin, who was also behind Koskov's abduction from British protection. Necros leaves another message saying "Death to Spies" at the scene.

Bond and Milova travel to Tangier, where Bond confronts Pushkin. He swears that he has no connection to the "Death to Spies" operation and reveals that Koskov is avoiding arrest for embezzlement of government funds. Bond and Pushkin then join forces and stage Pushkin's fake murder by Bond to allow Whitaker and Koskov to continue with their plan. However, Milova meets Koskov, who convinces her that Bond is a KGB agent and persuades her to drug him.

Koskov, Necros, Milova, and the captive Bond fly to the Soviet airbase in Afghanistan, where Koskov betrays and imprisons Milova with Bond. However, they manage to escape from captivity and free Afghan fellow prisoner Kamran Shah. Later, it turns out that he is the leader of the local Mujahideen. Bond further discovers that Koskov is using Soviet government funds to purchase raw opium from the Afghans, from which he will pay for the purchase of weapons, and he will pocket a significant profit.

With the help of the Mujahideen, Bond places a bomb among bags of opium in the cargo hold of the plane. However, Koskov and Necros spot him during the exit from the plane. They start shooting warning shots and then take off with the plane. While driving down the runway, Kara Milova drives her jeep inside. However, Necros also jumps onto the deck.

Koskov, who was driving him, hits a landing plane, but miraculously survives. Bond entrusts Kara with piloting and sets out to deactivate the bomb in the cargo hold. There, he confronts Necros, while Kara, unaware of what she is doing, opens the cargo hold. Bond throws Necros down along with the opium and deactivates the bomb at the last moment. He then goes after Whitaker, whom he kills after a shootout, while Pushkin goes to get Koskov.

Bond Song

The title song The Living Daylights, recorded by the Norwegian pop band A-ha, perfectly captures the electrifying energy and suspense of the James Bond film of the same name. A-ha's signature synth-pop sound infuses the song with a pulsating rhythm and infectious melody, setting the stage for the thrilling adventures that await Agent 007. With its catchy hooks and dynamic vocals, the song immerses listeners in a world of intrigue and danger, mirroring the high-stakes action of the film. A-ha's evocative performance, coupled with the song's memorable lyrics, creates a memorable sonic experience that resonates long after the credits roll. "The Living Daylights" stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of James Bond music and A-ha's contribution to the iconic franchise.


Role Actor Role Description
James Bond Timothy Dalton Main character, agent of the British Secret Service MI6.
Kara Milova Maryam d'Abo Cellist and later girlfriend of James Bond.
Georgi Koskov Jeroen Krabbé Defected Soviet general and main antagonist of the film.
Brad Whitaker Joe Don Baker Arms dealer obsessed with war.
Necros Andreas Wisniewski Koskov's assassin.
Leonid Pushkin John Rhys-Davies General and new head of the KGB.
Kamran Shah Art Malik Leader of the Afghan Mujahideen.
Saunders Thomas Wheatley Bond's ally.
M Robert Brown Director of MI6.
Q Desmond Llewelyn Chief inventor of MI6, supplier of Bond's technical gadgets.
Frederick Gray Geoffrey Keen British Minister of Defense.
Moneypenny Caroline Bliss M's secretary.
Felix Leiter John Terry CIA agent and Bond's ally.
Rosika Miklosova Julie T. Wallace Bond's contact at the Bratislava gas pipeline.
General Gogol Walter Gotell Former head of the KGB, who briefly appears in the film.

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Based on the original Czech article: Dech života (1987) – 15. bondovka.