My favourite fan editor is BACK! And he does not disappoint!!!
The original OHMSS seems to divide many Bond fans, some praise it, others seem to loathe it. As a casual Bond watcher, it has always fallen somewhere in the middle for me. It has a fantastic cast in Rigg and Salvalas and some truly spectacular stunt work. Lazenby definitely has the physicality for Bond and exudes the needed confidence, though his inexperience at times shines through. His performance in the original was also hampered by the producers constantly injecting references to previous Bond movies in the film, thus keeping the ghost of Connery present throughout the film and causing Lazenby to never truly own the role.
Luckily, this frustrating weakness has been smartly removed by Last Survivor. The suggestion of past exploits remain, but the blatant over the top/in your face references through past movie soundtracks, one liners and trophies are gone. This small but significant change goes a long way to make Lazenby immediately more acceptable as the new OO7.
The other weakness of the original film for me has always been the second act. As soon as Tracy disappears from the screen and Bond begins his investigation/infiltration of Blofled's headquarters, the movie moves like molasses. But again, it is here LS makes the most of his cuts. His edit choices are smart and very well executed; they keep the story moving forward as fast as possible without losing any vital plot.
Last Survivor's overall edit work has improved the story significantly, and clearly enhances Lazenby's performance and proves to me he had the potential to be one of the great Bonds.
But LS's work does not end in mere story editing. As always, he has done some truly incredible audio replacement work. I watched the Alternate Audio version and was blown away! I think his music switching and changes are sheer genius and far superior to the original! Great work mate!
If I were to nit-pick....There is also a couple of instances of clever audio/dialogue dubbing that works though slightly noticeable. Also, the jump cut during the conversation between Bond and Draco is a bit off putting, I completely understand why it was done. Some of the more cringe worthy one liners remain. And there is some minor video artifacts/compression in the blacks. But none of these detract from the enjoyment I experienced with watching.
But for me, the absolute best part of this edit is Last Survivor's commentary. I have said it before, but LS delivers some of the best, most engaging, informative commentaries I have ever had the pleasure to listen to... he puts many professional dvd commentaries to shame. What I enjoy so much about his commentaries is the sheer love for the material he has and how infectious it is. When I listen to LS's love for Bond, I begin to love Bond. I see the character and the franchise in a new way. It makes me want to go out experience more Bond -- watch more Bond movies, research more about Bond, read the books, etc. Anyone and everyone who watches this or any of LS's previous edits, MUST take the time to listen to Last Survivor's insights and comments. To do otherwise, is to do your self a great disservice.
So to recap, a brilliant edit both technically and narratively. Definitely superior to the original in my opinion and well worth watching for both Bond fan and non-fan alike.
Another solid Bond improvement from Last Survivor. This edit convincingly replaces the original.
Distractions are removed, we get back to the ultimate Bond girl faster, the narrative is tighter and more rewarding. The (enjoyable!) leisurely pace is retained. Lazenby comes into his own better than ever before.
Visual and sound editing are excellent. The one visual hiccup is a helicopter making a small jump on screen when they attack the mountain. And we get another editing masterclass with the audio commentary.
Hey nice job on this. You really cleaned this movie up nicely. The music changes you made were really outstanding and well thought out. There were a couple of spots where I think you may have been able to cut a little deeper. One example was the voiceover of Lazemby saying something like "this is where I stop" at the end of the bobsled scene. It felt awkward and took me out of the scene.
Also, I was thinking if you chose to resolve Blofeld's story, you could have edited him out of the drive by shooting scene and made it appear that Bunt did the shooting as revenge for Bond killing Blofeld. That of course involves a significant change of story and probably wasn't what you were going for. All in all, I really enjoyed.what you did with this film. I did notice some peculiarities with the sound, especially some of the dialog, but I suspect they were source material limitations.
One note about this film and others of its vintage, it really shows how far the craft of movie making has come, especially professional film editing. The original video and sound edits (not the fanedits) Seem clumsy and awkward in spots. It definitely not cut it in today's film industry
First, please forgive this rather short review....
I thought this was excellent! Most serious James Bond fans know that this is a good movie and that Lazenby made a great Bond, but only got the chance this one time.
I don't have much to say beyond Well Done! I couldn't point to anything "wrong" with this edit at all. I've given it 10s across the board except a 9 for enjoyment, and that is only because it still feels just a little long to me. But I don't have any great suggestions for where more could have been cut. Overall, I highly recommend this.