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[whitespace] Pierce Brosnan, Sophie Marceau
Bound Bond: Pierce Brosnan is all tied up with Sophie Marceau in 'The World Is Not Enough,' opening Friday at selected theaters.

'World' Weary

The 19th 007 film lacks the sense of theater seen in the best of Bond

By Richard von Busack

THE SOAP-OPERA TITLE gives it away: the 19th official Bond movie is, inevitably, scarce of new ideas. The most interesting thing about it isn't the passé gadgets or the car with a computer in it--almost everyone has a car with a computer in it now. Especially stale is the "Duck, James, Duck" girl, played by Denise Richards. Director Michael Apted seems to consider filming her a painful duty; and the casting of Richards as a nuclear physicist named Christmas Jones is a bit too much for even camp to bear. In this number, Bond (Pierce Brosnan) accidentally facilitates the death of a British oil millionaire who was in the midst of building an oil pipeline through Central Asia. The real killer is, apparently, a Carlos the Jackal-style freelance terrorist named Renard (Robert Carlyle). 007 heads to the former Soviet Union to guard the millionaire's ravishing daughter Elektra (Sophie Marceau); the two become lovers because of Bond's weakness for beautiful messed-up women. Actually, not since 1969's On Her Majesty's Secret Service has there been an episode of the series that was as interested in Bond's feelings. Apted, the best actor's director the Bonds have ever had, plays with the deeper Bond to a point where you have to say something that sounds lunatic: the characterization in this Bond film is interesting, but the action sequences aren't. Without a headquartered villain, The World Is Not Enough doesn't have the sense of theater of the best Bonds. But Apted's interest in the emotions of Bond, who actually makes some mistakes because of his feelings, digs into 007's character. Bond's complex relationship with Elektra and his maternal yet tense partnership with M (Judi Dench, excellent as always) make the film.

The World Is Not Enough (PG-13; 128 min), directed by Michael Apted and starring Pierce Brosnan, Sophie Marceau, Robert Carlyle and Judi Dench, opens Fri in Hollister at Premiere Cinema; in Morgan Hill at Cinema 6; in Mountain View at Century Cinema 16; in Newark at Cinedome 7; in San Jose at Century Capitol 16, Century 10 Berryessa, Century 21, Century 22, Century Capitol Drive-in; in Santa Clara at AMC Mercado 20.

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From the November 18-24, 1999 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 1999 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.

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