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The Living Daylights Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 13+

More serious, tougher version of Bond has plenty of violence

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Living Daylights is the 15th adventure in the James Bond series, and the first to star Timothy Dalton. Made in the 1980s, it featured a concession to the AIDS era, and showed Bond seducing only one woman in the line of duty, though other women are still treated as sexual objects. The PG-rated violence features heavy fighting, chasing, explosions, shooting, and killing, with only a little blood shown; the violence is not particularly realistic. Language is not an issue, except a brief middle-finger gesture, and drinking and smoking are kept to the background, although Bond smokes a cigarette and drinks a whisky. Opium smuggling is a part of the criminal plot. Philips brand electronics are shown from time to time. All in all, this is one of the less iffy of the Bond films, and perhaps a good place for fans to begin. (The next film in the series, Licence to Kill, was an attempt to showcase a much darker Bond.)

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. How intense is it? How many characters have to die so that Bond can save the world? Are there any consequences?
  • Bond is definitely a good guy, but his methods and behavior are questionable. What is appealing about him? Is he a role model? Does he seem "cool"? Is he someone to emulate? Why or why not?
  • How are the women in this movie treated? Why are they attracted to Bond? Would any of them be interesting in a movie of their own?
  • How does Bond's supposed monogamy reflect the time in which the movie was made? How is it related to AIDS? How does it affect the character or the series?
  • What does it mean for a Russian citizen to "defect"? How was this relevant at the time?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Bond is a little more well-behaved in this entry, seducing only one woman in the line of duty, though other women are treated as objects. His license to kill gives him freedom to cause all kinds of destruction without consequences.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: As always Bond is a good guy, highly trained, skilled, and very cool, but his behavior is questionable and not something to emulate.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Plenty of fighting, chasing, shooting, explosions, and deaths, with some blood shown. Kitchen fight with knives, mildly burning faces. Strangling with headphone cord. Some dangerous stunts. A war "museum" with a Hitler statue, etc.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Bond rips a woman's top off, briefly revealing the side of her naked breast. Plenty of women in bikinis. A woman distracts a man by shoving his face into her cleavage. Two briefly shown naked male bottoms. Some kissing and iffy sexual situations.

  • language false2

    Language: A very brief middle-finger gesture.

  • consumerism false2

    Consumerism: Philips brand electronics are shown more than once: a car stereo, a keychain, etc.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Part of the plot involves opium smuggling. Bond is shown smoking a cigarette, drinking whisky. A martini is drugged. Some other brief, background drinking/smoking, reference to champagne.

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