On Her Majesty's Secret Service

  • Review Date: November 14, 2006
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 1969
  • Running Time: 144 minutes

Common Sense Media says

007 in ski country -- and marriage territory?
  • Review Date: November 14, 2006
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 1969
  • Running Time: 144 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Bond is -- as always -- the suave, arch British hero who indulges in recreational sex and gambling. Here he forms an alliance with a gangster. Heroine Tracy shows some fighting skills and strength of her own, though she needs rescuing by James more often than not. As throughout the series, physical attractiveness is equated with goodness, especially in females; the only unpretty woman is the villain's nasty, German-accented second-in-command.

Violence

Lots of fistfights, gunfire, and car crashes. One character is shot at close range. A man on skis falls into a bladed snowplowing machine, which then spews blood-tinged snow. Other characters are engulfed in an avalanche. One man is skewered on a bed of spikes; another is blasted with a flamethrower.

Sex

As with many 007 movies of this vintage, the opening-credit sequence is an artsy montage featuring multicolored silhouettes of nude women. Though we don't see anything explicit, Bond beds a number of girls. At least this time he proposes marriage to one and insists they wait for their wedding night to consumate -- but then he changes his mind instantly. Bond also allows some characters to think he's homosexual.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

No problem, unless the parade of luxury '60s automobiles seems heavy-handed.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Recreational drinking and smoking (mostly by the villain).

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while James Bond is his usual ladies' man type here, he also masquerades as homosexual -- or, as the euphemistic dialogue puts it, he "doesn't like girls." Despite the comedic moments inherent in this premise, Bond still beds several women (and actually marries one!). Then the movie whipsaws around, ending on a particularly shocking note with the assassination of a sympathetic character. The violence includes a particularly don't-try-this-at-home-or-anywhere-else fight on back of a speeding bobsled. The heroine tries to commit suicide in photogenic fashion by drowning.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

After saving beautiful, troubled young contessa Tracy (Diana Rigg) from killing herself, James Bond (George Lazenby) is attacked by thugs. Tracy is the troubled daughter of a Corsican mobster, who ends up deciding that Bond would be the perfect husband for his daughter, and he offers Bond a fortune to marry her. Bond refuses the offer (at first) but agrees to steady dating -- especially when Daddy's underworld connections can lead Bond to the leader of the SPECTRE criminal group, Ernst Blofeld (Telly Savalas). From his mountaintop lair in the Swiss Alps, Blofeld runs a secret lab brewing nasty chemicals and diseases to unleash on the world via pretty, hypnotized girls. Bond infiltrates Blofeld's stronghold twice, first posing as an effeminate genealogist hired to prove Blofeld's claim that he has royal blood. When Blofeld figures out 007's true identity, the stuntwork really starts. The villain holds Tracy hostage, and Bond assaults the mountaintop again, this time bringing with him a whole legion of his would-be father in-law's soldiers, along with bombs and guns.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Though it's on the long and talky side for kids -- until the action begins, and then it's fast and furious -- ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE marks the sole starring appearance of Australian-born George Lazenby in the role of 007. It also confronts Bond, somewhat belatedly, with a peril he'd never faced before: getting married. Alas, neither had a happy outcome.

The movie is a pretty bumpy but enjoyable roller-coaster of comedy, thrills, and ultimate tragedy, with the unaccustomed sight of a weeping Bond. Supposedly this film explored the "character" of James Bond as none had before, even down to his family crest and motto ("The World Is Not Enough"), though it's hardly Oscar-grade material -- the suave secret agent who cracks silly jokes and seduces lovely ladies is still a pretty cartoony figure.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the peculiar notion of James Bond getting married and settling down. This movie's cruel conclusion at least provides a clue to why 007 (or Indiana Jones, or Batman, or Lara Croft, or any action hero or heroine) never stays permanently with a love interest in the end. Parents might talk about the way moviemakers, novelists, and other pop storytellers ensure that their action idols stay single. Is there an unfair little message in there, that life's worthwhile adventures come to an end with monogamy, marriage, and child responsibilities? You might try to cite movies (most done only in recent years) that dare to suggest otherwise.

Movie details

Theatrical release date:December 18, 1969
DVD release date:May 16, 2000
Cast:Diana Rigg, George Lazenby, Telly Savalas
Director:Peter R. Hunt
Studio:MGM/UA
Genre:Action/Adventure
Topics:Adventures
Run time:144 minutes
MPAA rating:PG

This review of On Her Majesty's Secret Service was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

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  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
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  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 14 years old Written byThe age organizer January 25, 2015
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

On her majesty secret service

13 and up
Teen, 14 years old Written byJimmy brew September 20, 2014
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

007 style gets wacky in comical epic but good moments

My rating:PG-13 for intense violence and action,sexuality/nudity,language,smoking and drug use
Kid, 9 years old May 10, 2014
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

5 on violence really

theres only 2 shots of blood and guts but in one scene it shows a naked lady on a playboy graphic only for like 1 second tough
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex

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