I’ve just had the good fortune to catch up with the new Bond documentary Everything or Nothing. The film was showcased in selected Odeon cinemas recently to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the James Bond series. Everything or Nothing, for those unaware, is the name which the Bond producers adopted when the began making the films in the early 1960’s – EON Productions, which is still the company producing the series to this day.
The documentary charts the journey from the literary origins of Ian Fleming’s super spy – right up to the recent films – Sean Connery to Daniel Craig. It is primarily interested in charting the ups and downs of the series producers and could be one of the criticisms I could aim at it – it turns into “the Broccoli show”. The Broccoli family who produce the films are notoriously guarded about how they are portrayed in the media. This ultimately makes some issues feel a bit too rose-tinted and sanitized at times. You will not find a single bad word about Cubby said here. That said, this is perhaps one of the more refreshingly open and honest documentaries I have seen about Bond. There are a few revealing candid moments here, mostly from former Bonds and how they were unceremoniously replaced. Another criticism might be that many prominent characters appear and are then dispatched of in much the same manner. You could also argue that many diehard fans will already know the majority of stories and anecdotes on display here.
This said, it is still extremely well made and for this fan it offered plenty of new behind the scenes footage and new unseen interviews. Naturally Sean Connery declines to get involved as per usual, his notorious falling out with the producers being covered along the way. Despite Mr Connery’s notable absence, the Bond actor interviews are where this documentary really soars. As Pierce Brosnan notes, it really is an exclusive feat playing Bond and more people have walked on the moon. It’s great to hear them talking candidly about the subject. Keeping things interesting are some nicely timed intercuts from the films and superb use of the music in the series. The documentary is fast paced, informative and whistles by before you know it – much like the films themselves. This feels like the natural companion piece to the “Inside” making of documentaries by John Cork which feature on the films up to 1989. If you like those, chances are you will like this. Therefore I would argue this makes a far more worthy addition to the otherwise brilliant Blu-ray collection than that disappointing bonus disc they produced. All in all, this comes highly recommend – especially to fans of the series.