Goldfinger

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Jump to navigation Jump to search
His heart is COOOOOOOOOLD!!

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

This was the third James Bond film and is one of the most iconic of the series. Part of what made it so good is that it is a shining example of a Pragmatic Adaptation that changed the title villain's rather ridiculous plot to literally rob Fort Knox in Ian Fleming's original novel into a plan that feels honestly and believably ingenious (not to mention changing the book's rather blatant racism and sexism).

Has several famous Bond-movie scenes, including Goldfinger threatening to cut Bond in half with a laser, Bond's high-stakes golf game and the death of Goldfinger's traitorous employee Jill Masterson, who for helping Bond ends up with her neck broken, her naked body sprawled across her bed and painted gold.

This movie also gave the franchise its first Cool Car. In fact, one of the great virtues of the film is that the gadgets shown, such as the car and the personal tracer, are 40+ years old and they still look both believable and neat (and in the case of the GPS-esque tracer, are modern-day consumer goods).

Tropes used in Goldfinger include:

Goldfinger: Is that julep tart enough for you, Mr. Bond?

  • Amazon Brigade: Pussy Galore's Flying Circus.
  • Antagonist Title
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Oddjob.
  • Battle Butler: Oddjob
  • The Big Board: The Fort Knox model Goldfinger shows off to the mobsters.
  • Big Red Button: The famous button under the stick shift in James Bond's car that activates the ejector seat.
  • Bizarre and Improbable Golf Game: "If that's his ball I'm Arnold Palmer."
  • Black Comedy Rape: Bond's martial arts sparring and wrestling with Pussy Galore before forcing himself upon her. It's thankfully subverted since she returns his kiss while they're still fully clothed, but it's still uncomfortable to watch.
  • Bling Bling Bang: Goldfinger's gold plated revolver, which he uses at Fort Knox and later in his own airplane.
  • Board to Death: Goldfinger and the mobsters who supplied his equipment needs.
  • Body Paint: Jill Masterson
  • Bond One-Liner: "Shocking"; "As you said, he had a pressing engagement."; "Where is Goldfinger?" "Playing his golden harp"; "Where's your butler friend [Oddjob]?" "He blew a fuse."
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: More or less averted. While Goldfinger does keep Bond alive, it's because he prefers keeping Bond under his thumb rather than MI-6 just sending another agent in Bond's place and wants to trick the good guys into thinking Bond is doing better than he actually is (in reality, had Bond not turned Pussy in the eleventh hour, Goldfinger almost certainly would have won). Goldfinger is also incredibly Genre Savvy for a Bond villain, opting not to underestimate Bond's craftiness.
  • Bulletproof Vest: An Q-Branch agent gives one a test of fire.
  • Ceiling Cling: Bond, to make a guard think he's escaped and ambush him.
  • Continuity Nod: Bond is told that his "attache case" has been irreparably damaged by Goldfinger's men, which he seems a bit affected by. It's easy to presume this is referring to the gadget-loaded briefcase he got in From Russia with Love, and he's realizing how screwed he is without it.
  • Continuous Decompression: After the window of Goldfinger's jet is shattered by a bullet.
  • Conveyor Belt O' Doom: Inversion when the laser beam moves toward Bond instead of the other way around.
  • Cool Car: Bond's Aston Martin DB5, with all of its cool gadgets.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Goldfinger.
  • Cure Your Gays: In the book (and possibly the movie as well, it's never touched upon), Pussy is a Lipstick Lesbian until Bond's magic penis makes her reconsider.
    • Honor Blackman discussed this aspect in a 2006 AMC television special, "Bond Girls Are Forever". She thinks that Pussy only believed she was a lesbian because Goldfinger abused her pretty badly, and Bond's charm got her in touch with her actual heterosexuality.
  • Cut the Juice: The frequently-parodied scene where Bond is about to deal with his Wire Dilemma, whereupon a disposal technician steps over, calmly reaches under a panel on the bomb, and switches it off.
  • Deadly Gas: The Delta 9 nerve gas used to kill the gangsters and intended to kill the Fort Knox guards.
  • Dead-Man Switch: Bond tells Goldfinger that his death will cause another agent (008) to replace him.
  • Death by Sex: Jill Masterson, murdered by Oddjob on Goldfinger's orders after having sex with Bond. In the book, her sister Tilly dies because she had become sexually obsessed with Pussy Galore.
  • Dirty Communists: In the novel, Goldfinger is revealed to be working for SMERSH (a Soviet counterintelligence organization).
    • In the movie, Goldfinger obtains his dirty-bomb material from Red China, which views his scheme as an opportunity to create "economic chaos in the West".
  • Disney Villain Death: Kisch, thrown over a railing to his death by Oddjob.
  • Dude in Distress: The scene where Bond is strapped down to a table with a laser beam slowly approaching his groin.
  • Double Entendre: "Shocking, positively shocking."
  • The Dragon: Oddjob
  • Dressing as the Enemy: After the army arrives, Goldfinger dresses himself as a U.S. soldier to escape.
  • Drop-Dead Gorgeous: Jill Masterson lying dead on the bed, painted gold. This is perhaps one of the franchise's most famous images.
  • Ejection Seat: The Aston Martin DB5's passenger seat.
  • Electrified Bathtub: Which even burned the actor, see below.
  • Every Car Is a Pinto: After a car drives over a cliff, it explodes in midair.
    • At the end, a plane immediately explodes upon contact with the ocean.
  • Evil Genius: Mr. Ling, the Chinese nuclear expert.
  • Fakeout Escape: Bond tricks the guard into thinking he's escaped, clings onto the ceiling, and then drops down behind him once the guard opens the door.
  • Five-Bad Band
  • Foreshadowing: Oddjob's statue-breaking and later neck breaking.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Torture device and door opener in one.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: The producers considered renaming Pussy "Kitty Galore", but decided the name wasn't much harmful. And then they took the censor out for dinner... (no, really)
    • It's rumored that Bond's response to her introduction was going to be "I know, but what's your name?"
  • Go-Karting with Bowser: Bond plays a round of golf with Goldfinger (who naturally, cheats). Bond doesn't exactly play fair, either.
  • Gold Makes Everything Shiny
  • Groin Attack: Just barely averted. How do you get Bond to stop cracking wise? Slowly inch a laser closer and closer to his manly parts.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: both played straight and subverted.
  • Heel Face Turn: Pussy Galore
    • Don't forget Jill Masterson early on.
  • Hero of Another Story: Bond's fellow 00 agent 008.
  • High Heel Face Turn: Pussy Galore, after being raped seduced by Bond.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Oddjob is electrocuted while holding his steel-bladed hat.
  • Hollywood Density: Bond uses two gold bars to break open the bomb and throws a gold bar at Oddjob.
    • Bond does seem to have some trouble lifting them.
    • And the scene in which Bond explains why stealing the gold would be impractical (following which Goldfinger explains his real plan) is probably the most famous aversion in cinema.
    • You might notice the cube resulted from the crushed Continental lacks wheels, and for something that'd be at least 2 tons (specially for the gold in the trunk), it barely makes a difference for the pick-up truck that receives it.[1]
  • Implacable Man: Oddjob takes a thrown gold bar in the chest without flinching. In fact, the only time he appears to be even mildly uneasy in the film is when Bond attempts to use his own killer hat against him.
  • Impossibly Cool Weapon: Oddjob's razor-rimmed hat.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Oddjob and his razor-rimmed hat.
  • Incredibly Long Note: He loves GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLD!!!
  • Instant Sedation: Kisch uses a tranquilizer dart gun on a helpless Bond.
  • Intimidation Demonstration: Oddjob demonstrates his ability with his killer bowler hat early in the film, Foreshadowing the fight with Bond at the end.
  • "It's Not Rape If You Enjoyed It": Bond and his Forceful Kiss of Pussy Galore is a mild example.
  • Just Between You and Me: Subverted and Inverted -- Goldfinger brags about his plan to his business partners, knowing that he's going to kill them all anyway and that it won't make the slightest bit of difference if he tells them. What Goldfinger doesn't realize is that Bond is listening in on his little presentation; however, Bond misinterprets Goldfinger's plan and thinks that he intends to steal all of Fort Knox's gold, when in actual fact he intends to make it radioactive.
  • Kick the Dog: In the novel, Goldfinger gives his cat to Oddjob for dinner after it 'accidentally' foils his plot to spy on Bond.
  • Large Ham: Gert Frobe set the standard for cartoonish supervillainy.
  • Locking MacGyver in the Store Cupboard: Bond is able to fool then KO a guard.
  • Looping Lines: All of Goldfinger's lines are dubbed, as Gert Frobe spoke very poor English. It's really an amazing job, and you'd never know just watching the film.
  • Magic Countdown: The nuclear Time Bomb in Fort Knox.
  • May-December Romance: Averted. Honor Blackman (Pussy Galore) is the oldest Bond girl.
  • Meaningful Name: Goldfinger's first name, Auric, is the Latin word for "gold".
  • Money Fetish: "This is gold, Mr. Bond. all my life I've been in love with its colour, its brilliance, its divine heaviness..."
  • Mook Lieutenant: Kisch. He isn't exactly The Dragon, but he's close.
  • Murphy's Bullet: When Tilly tries to kill Goldfinger.
  • My God, You Are Serious: Bond talking to Q about his car's ejector seat.
  • The Napoleon: In Fleming's novel, Goldfinger is both this and an Evil Redhead.
  • Nasty Party: Goldfinger explaining his scheme to the gangsters and then killing them.
  • Nazi Gold: Bond uses it as bait during the golf game.
  • Neck Snap: How Oddjob kills Tilly Masterson.
  • Never Mess with Granny: The old lady working as a guard decides to get an MP 40 to shoot the Aston Martin (Alfred Hitchcock told Guy Hamilton it was his favorite scene).
  • Nice Hat: Nice Killer Hat. Just mind any wiring about.
  • No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine: Pussy Galore tells Bond he's Goldfinger's guest. Later, Goldfinger serves Bond a mint julep, explains his plan and has Pussy give him a tour. Trope namer, more or less.
  • Oh Crap: "Who said anything about removing it, Mr. Bond?" Also counts as a Wham! Line.
  • Oil Slick: One fo the gadgets in Bond's car.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Jill Masterson has 5 minutes of screentime, but due to an iconic death, is one of the most well-remembered elements of the series.
    • The old lady who pulls out and MP 40 and shoots at Bond's Aston Martin when he escapes from Goldfinger's henchmen.
  • Operation: Blank: "Operation Grand Slam" is the name of Goldfinger's Evil Plan for Fort Knox, in both novel and film.
  • Pinball Protagonist: Aside from "convincing" Pussy to switch the gas canisters (and killing Oddjob), Bond actually has very little impact on the plot.
  • Pool Scene: Where Bond caught Goldfinger cheating at cards.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: Over the original book.
  • Product Placement: By Aston Martin and Ford (who provided Tilly's Mustang and the Lincoln Continental which gets crushed). Averted when Guy Hamilton thought using the scene Bond's in the bathroom (and uses all he can to hide the "magic eyes") to showcase Gilette products was silly.
  • Punch-Punch-Punch Uh-Oh: Bond, while fighting Oddjob in the Fort Knox vault.
  • Punny Name: Pussy Galore. In the film this was supposed to be lampshaded, with Bond's response to her telling him her name being "I'm sure you are, but what's your name?" but this was considered likely to annoy the censors. Bond's incredulous "I must be dreaming" is lampshading enough.
    • There's also Goldfinger's first name; Auric.
  • Rape as Backstory: In the novel, Pussy Galore hints that's why she's not into men.
  • Reflective Eyes: Bond dodges an attack when he sees his attacker reflected in a woman's eyes.
  • Same Language Dub: Gert Frobe did not speak English, so he spoke phonetically and was dubbed over.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: Jill Masterson and her sister Tilly.
  • Scenery Porn: The drive through France and Switzerland. The book includes large sections describing the scenery.
  • Sex Face Turn: Pussy Galore, with James Bond. In the book, Pussy was only faking at being a lesbian due to a history of sexual assault and a belief that there were no good men left in the world.
  • Slippery Skid: Caused by the Cool Car's oil slick device.
  • The Speechless: Oddjob.
  • Spiked Wheels: Originally used on the Aston Martin.
  • Spy Tux Reveal: The Trope Codifier.
  • Strapped to An Operating Table: Bond during the laser interrogation scene.
  • Suddenly Sexuality: Pussy Galore goes straight for Bond.
  • Take That: Bond finds time to slam The Beatles.

James Bond: My dear girl, there are some things that just aren't done, such as drinking Dom Perignon '53 above the temperature of 38 degrees Fahrenheit. That's just as bad as listening to the Beatles without earmuffs!

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

  1. The film crew actually had to cut the cube in half so the truck could support the weight.