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Time for a Bond edit - Moonraker

MusicEd921

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After getting into the Bond mood after seeing Skyfall twice, I felt motivated to take a look at Roger Moore's films and take a stab at the cheesiest of all Bond movies.....Moonraker.

It's not as bad as I remember, but there is a lot of work that needs to be done. I did a little trimming earlier and it seems to be going along nicely.

Here were some initial thoughts on what needs to go/change:

-The outer space battle outside of the space station can easily be taken out
-Jaws biting through the cable car wire is now gone. I moved the thug knocking out the control room worker to right as Bond and Goodhead get on the cable car so it looks like the reason the cable car stops is because the thug stopped it. Jaws appears as his cable car is approaching Bond's now.
-Some of the real chessy Bond lines I'm working at taking out (after Bond kills the anaconda Drax asks him why to which Bond replies "He had a crush on me.")
-The gondola chase is now gone. It was way way too silly even for a Roger Moore Bond.
-Sorry Jaws, but no girlfriend for you. Jaws will still help Bond at the end, but I am going to try and make it look as if once Jaws helps Bond and Goodhead detach from the space station that he stays behind as it blows up.
-Close Encounters 5 note motif is going to be replaced with a standard beeping sound for the keypad
-Definitely replacing the Magnificent Seven theme.
-The laser gun that melts the mannequin's head as well as the gringo machine gun in the Q branch courtyard scene are cut out.
-I forget her name now, but the first girl that helps Bond in Drax's office get chased down by Drax's dogs in the woods. Weird thing is all she had to do once she saw the dogs coming after her was run to the golf cart which she drove onto the scene and use that to escape them. I'm going to alter the scene so she dies off screen.
-You won't be able to see Bond's camera saying 007 on it when he is taking pictures of Drax's blueprints.
-Music will be added or altered to some action scenes to make them a little more suspenseful (cable car fight, speed boat chase).
-While I'm thinking of the speed boat chase....Jaws will not be seen during this sequence. Once Bond approaches the waterfall he hang glides out and that's it. I'd like to think that Drax's men were smart enough to turn around and not drive off the waterfall (especially since Jaws won't be there to rip out the steering wheel).


That's all I can think of off the top of my head. If you have some suggestions, please feel free to throw some out there.

I was thinking of changing the title to one of the few names Fleming had thought of for the novel:
The Moonraker Secret
The Moonraker Plot
The Inhuman Element
Wide of the Mark
The Infernal Machine
Hell Is Here
Out of the Clear Sky

I also thought about changing the theme song. I love Shirley's voice though, so maybe to another song of hers or something entirely different.
 

FoolsFollowing

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Sounds good. Haven't seen Moonraker in a long time, started rewatching all the Bonds but stopped short of the Roger Moore films. The less silliness in Bond the better IMO. Out of the Clear Sky is probably the best title in that list, although I also like The Infernal Machine (bit silly though. Also, wasn't that the name of an Indiana Jones videogame?).
 

Dwight Fry

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Great! More Bond edits are always welcome, and Moonraker definitely needs one. :)

I think this thread should be moved to ITW, though, as you seem to have actually started work on it.
 

ThrowgnCpr

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please let us know if this is still in the idea stage, or if you have actually started editing.
 

Gaith

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Gotta lose the song. It's the worst! :p
 

MusicEd921

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Definitely started work on it!

Been chopping away all afternoon. Now it's a matter of smoothing out some of the cuts and making other little trims here and there.

The biggest issue I have right now is what to do about Jaws at the end. Since I'm cutting out his little love story, I still need him to help Bond escape, otherwise if I just completely cut him helping Bond and Goodhead escape in the shuttle then it'll leave a huge plot hole about where he went. Bond watches Jaws on a little screen as he is bending whatever steel bar to help release the shuttle, but you can see the little blonde girl there too. Is there anyone that can give me a hand with that when the time comes to rotoscope her out? Is that feasible?

Any suggestions on a new song? I tried looking up (briefly) any songs called Out of the Clear Sky, but only found a country song that was similar in title, but nothing close to a Bond song. Even a song that has to do with space would work.
 

TV's Frink

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Thread moved to In-The-Works.
 

LastSurvivor

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Always good to see a bond edit in the works :) Moonraker is an underrated Moore entry IMHO. Sure, it's silly in parts, but at its core it has a good story, an excellent villain and a terrific John Barry score. Your current edit choices sound good ones but I'm not sure about replacing Shirle's title song, as I love it. However, if that's the way you want to go, maybe go with something classy - can't think of anything right now though.

Good luck with the project. Can't wait to see this one develop.
 

Dwight Fry

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I love the title song too. Plus, there's an added problem with replacing Bond film songs: the instrumental score often quotes the melody throughout the movie, so it seems weird to have it quote a song that is no longer there.
 

JetSetWilly

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I too like the theme song, but if you must replace it, as Dwight said, there's little motifs throughout. Just swap it out for the instrumental version, or the faster disco version that plays at the end. True, you might need to chop some of the credits as well.
 

MusicEd921

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I agree about maybe not replacing the song. It isn't bad, especially compared to Die Another Day's song and last night I was also thinking about how often the song is quoted within the score.

Does anybody know of some footage I can use for shots of Venice at night? Since I cut out the gondola chase, it goes from Bond asking Goodhead for a drink later to the nighttime scene where Bond is breaking into the glass factory.
 

MusicEd921

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UPDATE:

Here's what I have accomplished today (SPOILERS abound):

-Cut any shot of Bond's camera that says 007 on it
-Trimmed Corinne's death. Now Chang unleashes the dogs and you see them run after her then it quickly cuts to a shot of Drax. I thought it was silly that when she realizes she is about to be attacked by the dogs she doesn't just run to the golf cart that she was a few feet away from to escape.
-Cut gondola chase
-No more Close Encounters of the Third Kind keypad theme
-Cut Jaws at the airport setting off metal detector
-Trimmed lag time when Jaws is about to bite Manuela. He overpowers her so quick that I wanted the scene to move quicker and be a little more suspenseful
-Cable car fight has a lot of changes. Jaws does NOT bite the cable because it doesn't make sense that the car would work afterwards. Now the thug in the control room stops the car and then sends another car with Jaws on it to Bond and Goodhead.
-No Jaws love story. Sorry big guy!
-No Magnificent Seven theme. Replaced with a slower version of the Bond theme heard in the end of Thunderball.
-Cut the gringo machine gun and laser gun at Q branch
-Jaws is no longer part of the speed boat chase
-In one shot, Bond fires a missle which passes a speed boat and then turns around and hits it in the back, yet the explosion is in the front. Fixed it so now it looks as if the missle hits in the front.
-Since Jaws is not part of the chase, the bad guy's speed boat does not drive over the waterfall (which was just plain stupid anyway)
-Cut Bond's line to Drax about why he killed the snake ("Because he had a crush on me.")
-The phone call with General Golgo cuts before the reveal that he has some girl in his bed. Why is that even there?
-No more space battle. It stops rotating, the American pilots acknowledge it, then they dock. The only time you see the Americans is after they board the space station.
-Anytime Jaws is with the blonde or he gazes at her has all been cut or altered (i.e. when Drax tells Jaws to get rid of Bond and Goodhead on the space station before Jaws has a change of heart).

ORIGINAL RUNNING TIME: 126 Mins.
CURRENT EDIT RUNNING TIME: 116 Mins.


Still to go:
*Some music replacement for the cable car fight (found a good track from Octupussy) and the speed boat chase (undecided)
*Somehow edit out Jaws and the blonde waving to Bond. I want to make it so that Jaws helps Bond and Goodhead detach from the station and then it blows up taking Jaws with it. The problem is the blonde shares most of the shots with Jaws.
*This also means a little snip snip towards the end when the Americans say they recovered a ship containing a very large man and a short blonde girl.
 

wabid

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If you do replace the theme I think Pink Floyd would make a good Moonraker theme song. Listen to Brain Damage/Eclipse. Any of the songs with the girl doing background vocals always make me feel like they could have been a Bond song.
 

LastSurvivor

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cut list looking good to me. Not sure about the pink floyd idea - i love the band, but a bond song? Well, I suppose in the world of the funky 70's anything is possible ;-)
 

MusicEd921

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I did think about using a Pink Floyd song at one point!!!!! I decided to stick with the original song because it is quoted within the score several times and I really don't want to replace the score (only during the big action sequences where there is either not enough music or the music doesn't make it exciting enough).

I will try and post some videos today to get some general opinions. The keypad scenes, the music replacing the Magnificent Seven theme and if I get around to working on it today the cable car sequence.
 

Hymie

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This sounds like a good edit. I've always wondered why there weren't more Bond edits so this one will be more than welcomed.
 
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