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Goldfinger (1964) - Illustrated Reference

Updated on April 1, 2019

Goldfinger was directed by Guy Hamilton and premiered on 17th September 1964. Starring Sean Connery, Honor Blackman, Gert Frobe, Harold Sakata, Shirley Eaton, Tania Mallet and Cec Linder. Screenplay by Richard Maibaum & Paul Dehn. Music by John Barry. Theme sung by Shirley Bassey. 110mins.

James Bond is out to stop Auric Goldfinger from blowing up Fort Knox with an “Atomic device”, he is aided by Goldfinger’s personal pilot the sexy Pussy Galore. On the mission Bond has to dodge killer hats, is nearly castrated by laser beam and finds himself chained to a ticking atom bomb. All part of the job.

Goldfinger is the third in the Bond series of films and the seventh Bond novel by Ian Fleming, it was first published in 1959. Fleming died of a heart attack in August 1964 a month before Goldfinger was premiered in London, he was 56.

Goldfinger is the odd one out in the Sean Connery Bond series, it's the only film where SPECTRE does not get a mention or feature it’s head honcho Blofeld.

Perhaps to the chagrin of fans of the more somber From Russia With Love, Goldfinger was to be the template for all Bond films to come.

Sean Connery
Sean Connery
Honor Blackman
Honor Blackman
Harold Sakata and Gert Frobe
Harold Sakata and Gert Frobe
Harold Sakata
Harold Sakata
Sean Connery and Shirley Easton
Sean Connery and Shirley Easton
Tania Mallet
Tania Mallet

Jill Masterson: Who are you?
Bond: Bond, James Bond.

Sean Connery (1930-) / James Bond

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, Sean Connery won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for The Untouchables (1987). Has also played 007 in Dr. No (1962), From Russia With Love (1963), Thunderball (1965), You Only Live Twice (1967), Diamonds Are Forever (1971) and Never say Never Again (1983).

Pussy: “My name is Pussy Galore”
Bond: “I must be dreaming”

Honor Blackman (1927-) / Pussy Galore

Born in London, England, Honor Blackman’s films include – A Night to Remember (1958), Jason and the Argonauts (1963), Shalako (1968), Fright (1971), To the Devil a Daughter (1976), The Cat and the Canary (1978) and Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001). TV series The Avengers (1962-1964),

Bond: Do you expect me to talk?
Goldfinger: No Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!

Gert Frobe (1913-1988) / Auric Goldfinger

Born in Saxony, Germany, Gert Frobe achieved screen immortality as Goldfinger, perhaps the most famous of all Bond villains. Frobe spoke little English and was dubbed by actor Michael Collins, His real voice can be heard in the trailer. His films include - The Longest Day (1962), Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines (1965), Is Paris Burning? (1966), Those Fantastic Flying Fools (1967), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968), Monte Carlo or Bust (1969) and Ten Little Indians (1974).

Harold Sakata (1920-1982) / Oddjob

Born in Holualua, Hawaii, weightlifter and wrestler Harold Sakata played iconic henchman Oddjob, strong, silent and lethal, he kills his victims by throwing his steel rimmed bowler hat at them.

Shirley Eaton (1937-) / Jill Masterson

Born in Middlesex, England, beautiful Shirley Eaton plays doomed Jill Masterson, her dead body covered in gold paint became the visual symbol for the film. Her films include - Doctor in the House (1954), Doctor at Large (1957), Carry on Sergeant (1958), Carry on Nurse (1959), Carry on Constable (1960), Ten Little Indians (1965) and Around the World Under the Sea (1966).

Tania Mallet (1941-2019) / Tilly Masterson

Born in Blackpool, England, Tania Mallet played Jill Masterson's vengeful sister her life is cut short by Oddjobs bowler hat.

Cec Linder (1921-1992) / Felix Leiter

Born in Ontario, Canada, Cec Linder was the 2nd actor to play Bond's CIA pal Felix Leiter. His films include - SOS Pacific (1959), Crack in the Mirror (1960), Lolita (1962), A Touch of Class (1973), Age of Innocence (1977), City on Fire (1979) and Atlantic City (1980).

Bond: Ejector seat? You’re joking!
Q: I never joke about my work 007.

Bonds Bentley is replaced by Q branch with the gadget-laden Aston Martin DB5. The car is equipped with bullet-proof glass, smokescreen, blades projecting from the wheel hubs, a homing device, oil slick reservoir, twin machine guns at the front, a bullet proof shield in the rear and a passenger ejector seat.

In the novel Pussy is a lesbian, explaining to Bond that she became a lesbian after she was sexually abused by her uncle at the age of 12. Her sexuality is hinted at in the film “You can turn off the charm, I’m immune.” But it isn’t long before 007 seduces the previously immune Pussy and she switches sides.

The Bond producers were worried the name “Pussy Galore” would run foul of the censors and were considering changing it to “Kitty Galore” but after seeing a picture in a London newspaper of actress Honor Blackman at a charity ball with Prince Philip and the caption “Pussy and the Prince” they decided to keep the name in the film.

Goldfinger: This is gold, Mr Bond. All my life, I have been in love with it's color, it's brilliance, it's divine heaviness. I work with any enterprise that will increase my stock, which is considerable.
Bond: I think you've made your point, Goldfinger. Thank you for the demonstration.
Goldfinger: Choose your next witticism carefully, Mr Bond — it may be your last.

Originally the countdown to detonation at Fort Knox was to have ended at 003 seconds, but the producers insisted it end at 007 seconds and it was changed. Though you can still hear Bond say “Three more ticks and Mr. Goldfinger would have hit the jackpot.”

The film won an Oscar for Sound Effects Editing, John Barry’s score was nominated for a Grammy award and Ken Adams set design received a British Academy Award nomination.

Goldfinger ranks #71 on the American Film Institutes 100 Greatest Thrillers list and Auric Goldfinger is #49 on the AFI's 50 Greatest Movie Villains list.

Shirley Bassey sang the title song, it became Bassey’s only Billboard 100 top 40 hit, peaking at no.8. The single was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2008 and is #53 on the American Film Institutes list of 100 Greatest Movie Songs.

Goldfinger was a smash hit, the first of the series to break box office records, a worldwide phenomenon, grossing $51m in the US alone. It was so popular that some theatres stayed open 24 hours to accommodate the crowds. It was the beginning of Bondmania.

Counting ticket sales instead of dollars Goldfinger is the second most popular Bond film with 130 million tickets sold, Thunderball is no.1 selling 140 million tickets in total.

The Critics Wrote -

"Goldfinger represents the peak of the series. It is the most perfectly realised of all the films with hardly a wrong step made throughout it's length." (John Brosnan)

"Probably the liveliest and most amusing of the Bond spy spoofs, with a fairly taut plot between it's numerous highlights. The big budget is well used." (Halliwell)

"OLD Double-Oh Seven is slipping — or, rather, his script writers are. They are involving him more, and more with gadgets and less and less with girls... what they give us in "Goldfinger" is an excess of-science-fiction fun, a mess of mechanical melodrama and a minimum of bedroom farce." (New York Times)

"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." (Variety)

"A dazzling object lesson in the principle that nothing succeeds like excess." (Penelope Gilliatt, Observer)

"A bit much? Yes, but it's meant to be. Like Dr No and From Russia With Love, the two previous Bond bombshells, this picture is a thriller, exuberantly travestied." (Time)

"It's all incredible and dreadfully sinister, but you can't help watching." (Saturday Review)


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