Dec 03, 08
Read in December, 2008
OK, so I liked Goldfinger, but not as much as the previous few Bonds. I think the main problem was that everything was just too over-the-top. I know that's the nature of the villain, but it just seemed too much. Oh, and the coincidences that underpinned the story were quite ridiculous too.
Plus, if you thought the racism and misogyny in Doctor No were bad, you should see this one. Koreans eating dogs, and continually being referred to as "apes", lesbians that just need to meet a real man... it's all here.
Ben Schott comments in his introduction that the book "coincided with a dip in the critical appreciation of Bond", and it has to be said that for all Fleming's research (particularly concerning the environs of Fort Knox), this isn't his finest work.
Plus, there are some really dull sections. OK, so Goldfinger straps Bond to a circular saw, which slowly inches towards his groin (instead of the laser in the film)... but there's not a whole lot else, until you get to the final fifty pages. There's a golf game played out in excessive detail for quite a few pages, and a whole chapter devoted to the dullest and slowest car chase across Europe that you'll ever read.
Goldfinger is another glorious bond villain though, even if you can't read the continual references to sums of money without imagining them said in a Dr Evil voice.