Roger Moore Bond Films Ranked
What are the best Roger Moore Bond films? He’s one of the most divisive 007s in the franchise history. For kids growing up in the 1970s and 80s, he’s Bond, James Bond, but for many others the way he portrayed Bond wasn’t up to the standard.
Moore took over the role of 007 from Sean Connery in 1973, and went on to play the iconic spy in seven films, making him the longest-serving actor to portray Bond on the big screen.
From Live and Let Die (1973) to A View to a Kill (1985), Moore’s tenure as Bond saw the series evolve and change with the times. Some of his films are considered classic entries in the franchise, while others have not aged as well.
Whether you’re a die-hard Bond fan or just a casual viewer, we think you’ll find this ranking interesting and informative. So, without further ado, let’s get started and see how Roger Moore’s Bond films stack up against one another.
Seventh Place – A View to a Kill – Not the Best of Roger Moore Bond Movies
Roger Moore’s swansong film, A View to a Kill, has been voted as his worst, and pretty much every critic, movie platform and Bond fan is in agreement.
At 57, Moore cemented his place as the oldest actor ever to play James Bond, and it was one or two Bond films too far.
The plot is a little bit wishy washy – think Goldfinger but with computer chips instead of gold. After recovering a microchip from the body of one of his colleagues in Russia and discovering its potentially sinister implications, 007 embarks on an adventure that pits him against villain Max Zorin – head of Zorin Industries – and May Day – an intimidating Amazonian bodyguard.
They’re plotting global domination by destroying everything in their path without mercy. Bond, however, thwarts the impending explosion and faces off with Zorin on San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge until the Bond villain’s demise.
A View to a Kill was the first Bond movie to premiere outside the UK as they went with a big night in San Francisco opening. That said, reviews were mixed on both sides of the Atlantic and most of it was on Roger Moore’s age.
To be fair to the man himself, he said it was his worst Roger Moore Bond film, and he was actually mortified to learn he was older than his co-star’s mum. Let’s move on…
Sixth Place – Octopussy
Octopussy was Roger Moore’s penultimate Bond movie, and one where most critics thought he should have stopped at.
Investigating the murder of agent 009, James Bond uncovers a dangerous operation led by the mysterious Octopussy, a powerful woman at the helm of a smuggling ring disguised as a traveling circus in India.
As Bond delves deeper into the operation, he discovers Octopussy’s true motives and her connections to Afghan Prince Kamil Khan and Soviet General Orlov. But when she discovers that Khan has betrayed her, Octopussy chooses to side with Bond in foiling their nefarious plan. Together, they work to prevent a devastating nuclear attack in West Germany.
The plot and how its intertwined with the circus is a bit weak, and we see Moore disarming a nuclear bomb dressed as a clown suit, which kind of says it all. And as with all Roger Moore Bond movies the fun and dare I say it, silliness is constant – Tarzan anyone?
Fifth Place – Moonraker
With escalating problems in the Cold War in 1977, James Bond was sent to space to put the world to rights in Moonraker.
The Moonraker plot follows James Bond as he delves into the mysterious hijacking of a space shuttle, leading him on a dangerous mission to stop the nefarious Hugo Drax from unleashing a deadly attack on humanity.
Bond joins forces with CIA agent Holly Goodhead (not sure what her surname means), and together they embark on a journey to outer space to thwart Hugo Drax’s nefarious plans to wipe out the human race and replace it with a master race.
Some of the stunts are fantastic, such as the mid-air space shuttle hijack. The opening scene with 007 being pushed out of the plane and his free-fall mid-air parachute snatch-and-grab is spectacular.
Moonraker also sees the return of the popular Bond villain Jaws, who adds an extra layer of excitement to the story even if he’s not as menacing this time around.
The last Bond film of the 1970s is great for its stunts and effects and even got a nomination for Best Visual Effects at the Academy Awards.
The film came out 2 years after the mega successful Star Wars, so many critics think it was Broccoli’s attempt to cash in on the success of space missions. Of course, Moonraker wasn’t as successful as Star Wars, but it’s a good film, and like all Roger Moore Bond movies, it’s full of entertainment.
Fourth Place – Man With the Golden Gun
Roger Moore’s second outing as James Bond The Man with The Golden Gun comes in fourth on our rankings.
Bond begins an arduous journey to retrieve the powerful Solex Agitator, a weapon capable of controlling solar energy and possibly resolving the world’s energy shortage. It’s in the hands of his nemesis, Bond villain Francisco Scaramanga, a professional killer with some longstanding grudge against Bond.
Bond’s inquiry culminates in a last-stand duel with Scaramanga, originally intended to be a shootout. Yet when Bond turns around, the villain mysteriously disappears.
Nick Nack then leads Bond into an intricate labyrinth at Scaramanga’s hideaway, but Bond outsmarts his henchman and kills Scaramanga before recovering the Solex Agitator.
Roger Moore is much younger in this Bond movie. He’s still feeling his way as 007, but it seems like the producers wanted to portray Bond as more of a chauvinist cad than ever before, something that wouldn’t happen nowadays.
It’s silly at times, such as the two Sumo wrestler security guards, and the school girls helping Bond in the karate street brawl, but come on this was the 1970s.
The Man with the Golden Gun might not be Roger Moore’s best Bond movie, but there are some great scenes in it and Christopher Lee (Dracula) as Francesco Scaramanga make it a good watch.
Third Place – For Your Eyes Only
After an investigation in outer space in the previous Bond film, Roger Moore as 007 was back down to earth in For Your Eyes Only.
It’s a back-to-basics approach with very few gadgets and a plot that utilizes the concurrent Cold War., but the action and Moore’s performance is up there with the best Bond films.
James Bond is sent to investigate the sinking of a British vessel that holds the ATAC coding system the Soviets want. He soon suspects a man named Aristotle “Aris” Kristatos of being behind the incident. Bond teams up with Melina Havelock, who’s also seeking revenge for her parents’ murder at the hands of Kristatos.
The two must race against time to stop him from obtaining the ATAC system, leading to thrilling car chase in a Citroën 2CV, intense underwater battles over coral reefs, and a cliff-hanging attack on a mountaintop fortress.
Along with the action, the story explores the complex bond between Bond and Melina as they work together to stop Kristatos and avenge their loved ones.
For Your Eyes Only is definitely one of the best Roger Moore Bond movies, the action is non-stop, there are great characters from Bond girls to villains, and even Moore plays a more serious role in this one.
Runner Up – Live and Let Die
It was far removed from the Connery Bond films and plots. The cast was star studded and the plot saw Bond investigate the murder of 3 MI6 agents, leading him to New Orleans, New York and San Monique.
The investigation brought him up against mob boss Mr Big and dictator Dr. Kananga, unknowingly the same person, and who is trying to flood the American opium market with free heroin, so he can capitalise further down the line.
Kananga’s aid Solitaire, played by the beautiful Jane Seymour, can predict the future through her tarot cards. She ends up in bed with Bond after a card trick of his, and then helps him bring down Mr Big and his drug empire.
There are some memorable characters, such as Kananga’s main henchman Tee Hee and his prosthetic arms with a claw. And Louisiana cop JW Pepper makes a short but memorable appearance in the movie as he tries his best to stop Bond in an exciting boat chase.
The film was met with mixed reviews, with many critiquing the use of too realistic a plot. There was no Aston Martin DB5 or any other flash cars, and the gadgetry had pretty much disappeared, but this is a good Bond film.
The Best Roger Moore Bond Film – The Spy Who Loved Me
The Spy Who Loved Me is a James Bond film that showcases Roger Moore’s portrayal of the iconic spy at its best. It boasts a star studded cast with some of the most memorable characters in the entire movies series.
The film dazzles with some of the most epic action moments in all 007 films, never mind just Roger Moore’s. From the opening scene daring ski jump that ends with an unforgettable Union Jack parachute to Bond’s menacing duels with giant metal teethed Jaws, the film never gives up.
The Spy Who Loved Me follows Bond and his Soviet KGB rival spy, Anya Amasova (Agent XXX), as they work together to recover a microfilm that leads to megalomaniac Karl Stromberg’s plans to destroy the world and create a new civilization under the sea.
The film features a charming and entertaining dynamic between Bond and Anya played by Barbara Bach, as they battle their common enemy and she battles against falling in love with Bond.
Even the gadgets are some of the best throughout the whole Bond series with 007’s Lotus Esprit turning into a submarine as he plots to stop Stromberg.
And of course The Spy Who Loved Me introduced us to one of Bond’s all-time classic bag guys in Jaws. Played by Richard Kiel, Jaws gave Bond and every young kid watching the film nightmares as the two clashed regularly throughout the film.
Jaws bites through a chain, punches a hole in doors, in the side of a van, he rips open a metal roof, and he survives an exploding car, and he even gets the better of a great white shark.
The Spy Who Loved Me is a Bond classic that encapsulates the essence of 007: Bond’s unique charm, badass Bond Girls, spectacular gadgets, a wild plotline with global jetsetting to try and prevent World War III from breaking out, and Jaws of course. If you haven’t seen it in a while, watch it, it’;s the best of Roger Moore Bond films.
Roger Moore Bond Films in Order
Live and Let Die (1973)
The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)
The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
For Your Eyes Only (1981)
A View to a Kill (1985)
Roger Moore Bond Films – Up There with the Best and Worst
So there you have it, the list of Roger Moore Bond films ranked from worst to best. If course it’s a subjective topic, and we don’t fully agree with the exact outcome, but going with the popular vote of many is fairest.
That said, I don’t think there’ll be any arguments with The Spy Who Loved Me being the favourite. But even the worst voted film A View to a Kill has some classic moments.
Roger Moore divides opinion among Bond fans of all ages. But his personal style, charm and wit made him stand out from other Bonds in other ways. So, whether you agree with the popular vote or not, we highly recommend you re-visit all Roger Moore Bond films.
Take a look at our James Bond Movies in Order…