The bond developed early. Too early, mother would argue at times. But papa was a big 007 fan and he decided that his
12-year-old was mature enough to handle the super spy’s movies. So, it was time for the high-octane, seductive world of guns, girls and gadgets on Chanakya’s big screen for the big boy.
In the pre-VCR 80s, a U/A re-run of Diamonds are Forever or the premiere of A View to a Kill was the luckiest an adolescent could hope to get. I remember flinging my schoolbag and hopping onto papa’s bike. The promise of skipping football and finishing assignments early, appeared to have done the trick.
And when Shirley Bassey crooned the title song of Diamonds… and images of semi-nude Bond beauties filled the dark screen, I got my first real taste of Hollywood glamour. Papa appeared to favour Sean Connery over other Bonds, and it was from him that I learnt early on that the discerning are able to discern only after experiencing the trashy.
With Chanakya playing host to many a Bond outing, followed by Nirula’s ice- cream to cool things off, I turned from greenhorn enthusiast to arm-chair expert, able to debate the merits of Halle Berry’s curves versus Ursula Andress’s iconic bikini shot. And with Pierce Brosnan’s advent, DVD technology revolutionised the viewing of Ian Fleming’s fantastic creations.
Quantum of Solace is the first Bond release since papa lost the battle to cancer in January this year. I still remember his smile when I gifted him the Casino Royale DVD last winter. Even as I dozed off towards the climax, the Bond fan didn’t want to miss a frame. “He hasn’t done badly for a debutant,” he would later say about Daniel Craig.
With a stoic heart, I caught this Friday’s release and hope to take my son Shashwat, who is still in kindergarten, to future releases as soon as he learns to say ‘tomorrow never dies’.