Kamal Khan: “Mr. Bond is indeed of a very rare breed... soon to be made extinct.”
Octopussy is a short story by Ian Fleming and the title of the thirteenth James Bond film made by EON Productions, as well as a character in the film. The film is the sixth to star Roger Moore as the British Secret Service agent, Commander James Bond. It is also the second film Moore has done with Swedish actress Maud Adams, the first being 1974's The Man with the Golden Gun. Produced by Albert R. Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, it was released in 1983, the same year as the release of the unofficial James Bond film Never Say Never Again by screenwriter and Thunderball film-rights owner Kevin McClory.
For the original short story collection that inspired the film, see Octopussy and The Living Daylights.
The pre-title sequence is unrelated to the rest of the film, involving James Bond's mission to destroy technology which has fallen into the hands of an unnamed Latin American country, and features him flying an ultralight aircraft.
The Property of a Lady
When a fatally wounded British agent stumbles into the British Embassy in West Berlin with a fake Fabergé egg, MI6 immediately suspect Soviet involvement (the real valuable egg has turned up at auction in London). James Bond is sent to find out who the seller is and subsequently why 009 was murdered because of the fake egg. When an exiled Afghan prince, Kamal Khan, clearly has to buy the egg at any price during the auction, Bond follows him back to his palace in India to find out why.
Kamal Khan is working for renegade Soviet General Orlov, who is supplying Khan with real priceless Soviet treasures, replacing them in state depositories with replicas. Kamal Khan is in turn smuggling them into the west with help from the mysterious Octopussy, a fabulously wealthy woman who lives in a luxurious island palace, dubbed the "Floating Palace", in India, surrounded by women who are members of her Octopus Cult, each recognized by a tattooed blue-ringed octopus on their bottoms. Octopussy is more than a smuggler, however, and has many legitimate businesses, including shipping, hotels, carnivals and circuses - the latter being used as an ideal front for smuggling jewelry. As a result, many of her female companions and guards are highly trained gymnasts.
Bond is led to Octopussy and confronts her, only to find out that she feels indebted to him for letting her father, a British Major, commit suicide rather than face the shame of a court martial when Bond was sent after him for smuggling and murder some years before. With Octopussy now an ally to Bond, Kamal Khan manages to separate the pair long enough to pursue his real plan - to replace the jewellery canister being smuggled by Octopussy's circus with a nuclear bomb. The warhead is primed to go off during a performance at a US Air Force base in West Germany. As the explosion will look like an accident, Europe would insist on nuclear disarmament and thus leave western Europe defenceless against an attack from Orlov's Soviet forces.
Bond at Kamal's palace in India sees Orlov arrive and hears that they plan to meet at Karl-Marx-Stadt in East Germany, where Octopussy's circus is going to perform, before it heads on a train to the West. Here Orlov smashes the real Fabergé egg because he thinks it is actually a fake. Bond manages to escape from the palace pursued by Kamal on top of elephants, and is saved by some passing American tourists.
Defusing a Bomb
In East Germany Bond tries to stop the train with the bomb on board from leaving the Soviet base. He confronts Orlov, who escapes. Bond then follows the train by car, which he even manages to drive on the rails. Also following the train is General Gogol who has found out about Orlov's plan and also tries to stop the train. When Orlov realizes that Bond is aboard he is after the train too, past the KGB border guards who shoot him. General Gogol arrives just as he is shot.
Aboard the train, Bond is pursued by Kamal. Bond is forced off, and pursues it on foot and by taking a car. Kamal and his servant know about the bomb and leave, on their way out passing Bond on the road, but Kamal thinks they will be 'rid of Bond too'. Bond has trouble getting into the American military base, and gets into the circus disguised as a clown. The American guards let him go after he is identified by Octopussy, and he manages to defuse the bomb just in time.
Showdown with Kahn
Back in India, Kamal is preparing to leave his palace. However, Octopussy and her cult members arrive, along with Q and Bond in a hot air balloon with a huge Union Jack displayed on it. They overpower the guards, although Kamal escapes on a light plane with Octopussy. Bond hangs onto the plane, and battles it out with the Indian servant outside the plane, before Bond and Octopussy manage to escape and the plane crashes into the side of a mountain, killing Kamal.
Gogol has a meeting with M telling him that the USSR will deny the incident ever occurred. However, he suggests Bond should return the Romanov Star. M agrees, but informs Golgol that 007 is on medical leave. During medical leave on Octopussy's boat, Bond makes love to Octopussy.
Cast & Characters
- Directed By: John Glen
- Executive Producer: Michael G. Wilson
- Produced By: Albert R. Broccoli
- Screenplay By: George MacDonald Fraser, Richard Maibaum, Michael G. Wilson
- Music Composed By: John Barry
- Production Design By: Peter Lamont
Vehicles & gadgets
- Acrostar Jet — Used in the opening sequence of the film. The wings of this plane fold up vertically while not in use. During this mission, Bond hid the plane in a horse trailer. Due to a small gas tank, Bond was forced to land at a gas station to refill.
- Alfa-Romeo GTV6 — Stolen from a German woman using a telephone booth, allowing Bond to make it to the Octopussy's circus in time to warn the NATO General present there of the Soviet plot. Then the hottest 'cheap' sports car in Europe, and the most popular Alfa Romeo sports coupe ever made.
- Alligator Boat — Bond sneaks onto Octopussy's island by driving a disguised boat that looks like an alligator.
- Pen — Given to Bond by Q-Branch, this pen contains acid that can burn through any metal.
- Watch — Another gift from Q-Branch, this watch branded by Seiko comes with a beacon that leads Bond to a Fabergé egg. The model used in the movie is the Seiko G757-5020 (often mistaken for the G757-5000, which had a rubber strap instead of the metal one clearly seen in the movie).
- London, England
- East Berlin, Germany — Checkpoint Charlie
- West Berlin, Germany
- Feldstadt, Germany
- Moscow, Russia
- Udaipur, India
- The Fabergé egg which is stolen was made in 1898 and is entitled 'Lilies of the Valley', although its name not mentioned in the film. The egg contains a model of the imperial state coach.
- Movie critics were beginning to comment on Roger Moore's age, as he was 54 years old at the time of filming, and many felt he was too old to play James Bond. He originally announced that he would retire, but returned one final time in 1985's A View to a Kill.
- The title of the film comes from a short story in which Bond is assigned by the British Secret Service to apprehend an octopus-loving British officer who is implicated in a murder relating to an illegally obtained cache of Nazi gold. Bond gives the officer the option of committing suicide. The film makes direct reference to the events in the story by revealing that Octopussy's father was the villain of the short story.
- At the end of the film, the credits announce that the next Bond film title as From a View to a Kill. This was later changed to A View to a Kill right before filming began. Octopussy is also the last Bond film to date to announce the title of the next film in the end credits.
- This is the second Bond movie to feature Maud Adams. The producers were reluctant to feature her again because her previous character was killed in The Man with the Golden Gun.
- This is also the first movie to feature Robert Brown as M. It is unknown as to whether Brown is supposed to be playing the same character as Bernard Lee (Sir Miles Messervy) or a different one (possibly a promoted Admiral Hargreaves from The Spy Who Loved Me), as the films did not establish until GoldenEye that 'M' is a title, something which Ian Fleming left ambiguous in the novels.
- The pre-title sequence was originally to take place in Moonraker (along with the concept of twin knife-throwing assassins) over the Angel Falls, but this was shelved after the river-bed dried up.
- Vijay Amritraj was a professional tennis player in real life. The movie makes a spoof of this fact by having Vijay fend off Kamal's henchmen with a tennis racquet, while the surrounding townspeople watch the conflict like a tennis match by repeatedly turning their heads left then right. At one point Vijay's character also jokes that he plays a little tennis.
- Octopussy's palace is really the Lake Palace Hotel in Udaipur.
Comic book adaptation
Opening Title Sequence
|Kamal Khan learns that Octopussy is hosting Bond||Bond flies a plane|
|James Bond films|
Dr. No (1962) - From Russia with Love (1963) - Goldfinger (1964) - Thunderball (1965) - You Only Live Twice (1967) - Diamonds Are Forever (1971)
| George Lazenby |
On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
Live and Let Die (1973) - The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) - The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) - Moonraker (1979) - For Your Eyes Only (1981) - Octopussy (1983) - A View to a Kill (1985)
The Living Daylights (1987) - Licence to Kill (1989)
GoldenEye (1995) - Tomorrow Never Dies (1998) - The World Is Not Enough (1999) - Die Another Day (2002)
Casino Royale (2006) - Quantum of Solace (2008) - Skyfall (2012) - Spectre (2015) - Bond 25
Casino Royale (1954) - Casino Royale (1967) - Never Say Never Again (1983)