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Summary

The ultimate oral history of the only gentleman secret agent with a license to kill...and thrill...telling the incredible, uncensored true stories of the James Bond franchise and spy mania.

For over five decades, the cinematic adventures of James Bond have thrilled moviegoers. Now, best-selling authors Mark A. Altman and Edward Gross take you behind-the-scenes of the most famous and beloved movie franchise of all time filled with reflections from over 150 cast, crew, critics, and filmmakers who reflect on the impact of this legendary movie franchise as well as share their thoughts about their favorite (and least) favorite 007 adventures and spy mania which gripped fans the world over in the wake of the success of the James Bond films.

From Russia - with love, course - to Vegas, from below the bright blue waters of the Bahamas in search of a missing nuclear weapon to the top of the Golden Gate Bridge, from below the seas in Stromberg’s new Noah's Ark of Atlantis into orbit with Hugo Drax, Nobody Does It Better: The Complete Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of James Bond tells the amazing, true story of the birth of James Bond through the latest remarkable James Bond adventures as well as the spy mania classics that enthralled the world.

It’s Bond and beyond from the critically acclaimed authors of the best-selling The Fifty-Year Mission and So Say We All.

A Macmillan Audio production from Forge Books

©2020 Edward Gross, Mark A. Altman (P)2020 Macmillan Audio

What listeners say about Nobody Does It Better

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting and exhaustive. Appealing narrators.

The Mockney narrators really got on my nerves with their breathy performance. A couple had a really smug and supercilious attitude which made me want to shout at the phone. Just read it, don’t do a performance.

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Surpsiringly Interesting

When I first started listening to this, I expected it to be awful. The introduction is mostly a self-congratulatory piece by the authors, followed by a very long series of snipped quotes from people involved in the Bond movie franchise. But then, once that's out of the way and they start going through each film in turn it becomes an amazingly riveting history of Bond, from Fleming's original stories right up to Spectre. And the snips of quotes actually work.

I expected this to be a courtier piece, telling us how wonderful everyone is, and truthfully, there's quite a lot of that but this is far from uncritical, and it does point fingers, place blame on seemingly appropriate shoulders and also offer reasons, alternatives, and sensible criticisms. Everyone gets some criticism, with perhaps the exception of Barbara Brocolli & Michael G Wilson - perhaps unsurprisingly, but that criticism is neither overly harsh nor unwarranted.

We all have "our James Bond" - the Spy who loves us - and this is a fantastic listen for anyone who loves the books or the movies. Well worth a listen.

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Loved it

Great to hear the history of the franchise film by film, especially liked how they covered the transitions between each actor.

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Another great aural history by Ed and Mark

These guys are the best in the business, fantastic history of Bond.
Great coverage of the whole history of the saga.

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  • Mr
  • 05-07-22

Lot of good stuff, but gets dragged down.

There's a great deal in this book to enthral and delight Bond aficionados. It justifies most (we'll get onto that later) of its over 28 hour run time, with reams of detail about the casting, special effects, setbacks, dramas, music, personalities, scripts and other minutia that we 007 junkies always want more of. There are quotes from, and interviews with, a vast array of characters who have been associated with the franchise over its long history, and it's great to get those different perspectives and anecdotes from so many series veterans. I certainly came away from it feeling I knew a whole lot more stuff that I wanted to know about one of my favourite series. I also appreciate that they included 1967 Casino Royale and the much maligned Never Say Never Again, two films that often get left out of the official history.

And then there's the whinging. . . . . .

The string of OTT geeky freak-outs over tiny creative missteps, makes you first chuckle indulgently, and then roll your eyes. (Apparently a two-second visual gag with a pigeon totally ruined “Moonraker” for some people). But more tiresome is the insidious woke posturing. Multiple snarky and utterly irrelevant swipes at Donald Trump, self-righteous condemnations of Fleming's writing, and endless feminist analysis of this or that Bond girl. (If you down a shot every time you hear the term “strong woman”, you'll be blind drunk within an hour). The worst of this is the gratingly irritating Lisa Funnel: a feminist lecturer who clearly loathes everything about Bond, and who pops up every 20 minutes demanding to know why Bond can't be meeker, more passive, and get thoroughly emasculated by the masculine, invincible and totally asexual women she wishes Bond girls could be.

In a fan-book about Bond, I don't need to constantly hear from people who either don't know, (or don't want to admit) that a big part of the appeal of Bond is that he's dangerous, buccaneering, and the antithesis of political correctness. Especially galling since the films are very slowly succumbing to the woke mind-virus year by year.

The narrators are decent enough, although it can be a bit confusing since there are quite a lot of them all narrating multiple people.

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Fantastic archive collection; some poor readers

As others have mentioned, this is a truly exhaustive (without ever being dull) collection of interviews - old and new - brought together to tell the story of the film series. Unusually for some franchises previous directors and writers are happy to critique their successor’s work, so there are some very interesting perspectives.
.Highly recommended.

Re narration: there are 3 narrators, with Tam Williams particularly prone to fluffing some basic pronunciations, which can be annoying.

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The trails and tribulations of Bond

very enjoyable to listen to the trails and tribulations behind every James Bond production. It has made me want to watch the movies all over again but with the added bonus of what really was involved to being them to the big screen.

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I gave up

Like other reviews have highlighted, one of the narrators has a voice that I just can't get on with on an audio book. I'm sure the book continues to be brilliant after I stopped listening. But for me that voice and tone just grates. Sorry.

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Bondtastic

I loved this. Couldn’t get enough. The narration is easily listenable and takes you through step by step in intricate detail every bond movie.
A must have for all bond fans

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lengthy and very anecdotal.

Enjoyable, lengthy and full of quotes from critics and people connected with each project. My personal opinion was seriously shaken by listening to this but on reflection comments were invariably true. If you wish to glow in being a Bond fan and protective of your memories then give it a body swerve, otherwise certainly give it a go.

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  • John Gray
  • 13-03-20

Awesome

Loved this book and hated finishing it! Really well researched and well written. Covers the origins of Bond, as well as all the politics and internecine battles within each movie. Great detail about how each director and writer and actor approached this mythic series. An absolute must if you're a 007 fan.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Paul S.Mallary
  • 24-03-20

Great listen

You would think a book at over 28 hours would be to much. It isn’t. A great listen that I didn’t want to end. Will listen to it again. The chapter on Skyfall and Spectre were my favorite. Definitely worth a credit.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 29-03-20

Entertaining and Indepth

Wonderful history of the James Bond movie franchise. It covers them all from Dr. No to the most recent, Spectre. It is a little too long at times, but full of inside information for any fan of the series.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Brian
  • 20-02-20

Comprehensive

Multiple terrific narrators interviews with cast and crew and producers and even some comments from Sean Connery himself

3 people found this helpful

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  • Ryan Baumbach
  • 31-03-20

Thoroughly enjoyable

The source for all things James Bond by the people who made the movies. Though not a huge critique of the movies there are still times where negative opinions are expressed about the some of the films, which is referencing. I enjoyed the narrators though you might inevitably confuse what the actor, producer, or director says with the overall narrative from the authors. This type of book is a personal favorite of mine because of the fact that you get so many different voices from a particular genre coming together. I’ve got to see all the films now which I’m ashamed to say that have not seen every Bond film.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Musikwiz
  • 05-03-20

First Two Chapters are nothing but quotes!

I love James Bond, but this is not at all what I thought it was going to be. Nothing but quotes in the first two chapters. Had to abort mission!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kbp2003
  • 13-06-20

fantastic

loved it. in depth, touched on every film up to 2017. only downside was that they only used a few English accented people for everyone. hearing a Christian Slater quote in English accent...a little jarring. other than that, this is a 100% recommend if you have ever enjoyed anything bond

1 person found this helpful

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  • Salvator Marinello
  • 17-07-22

A Must Listen

If you are a Bond fan, this book is a must listen. The authors do a great job of delving into the creative process of the series as a whole and the specifics of the individual movies.

They are incredibly detailed in the presentation and include comments from just about everyone you can think of who’s been involved with the movies.

There is still so much I’d like to know, as a total Bond Maniac, but this book is fantastic.

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  • The English Gentleman
  • 20-01-22

Behind The Bond Films

If you’re a fan of James Bond, this is worth the hours of listening!. I grew up with 007, when going to see it was something special.
Now to understand the creative processes behind each film and the characters is an audible pleasure!.
It’s an update production, recorded in 2020, and touches on ‘No Time To Die’.

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  • Rob Schaefer
  • 03-10-21

Very enjoyable!

A great overview of Bond films from the writers, actors, producers who made them. Very detailed. It doesn’t shy away from embarrassing moments. Some great insights.