James Bond, the iconic British spy, has been thrilling audiences for over six decades. The suave, sophisticated secret agent has starred in a whopping 26 films, each one featuring high-stakes action, daring stunts, and glamorous locales. With so many Bond movies to choose from, it can be tough to know where to start. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of the top 10 Bond movies of all time.
1. Goldfinger (1964)
Goldfinger is widely considered to be the best Bond film of all time. This classic features Sean Connery as 007, taking on Auric Goldfinger, a villain with a plan to contaminate the gold in Fort Knox. With iconic scenes like the Aston Martin DB5 car chase and the famous line “shaken, not stirred,” Goldfinger set the bar high for all Bond movies to come.
2. Casino Royale (2006)
When Daniel Craig took on the role of James Bond in 2006, there was a lot of skepticism about whether he could live up to the legacy of his predecessors. But Casino Royale put all doubts to rest. This gritty, action-packed film reimagined Bond as a more realistic, grounded character, and Craig delivered a standout performance. The high-stakes poker game and parkour chase sequence are two of the film’s most memorable scenes.
3. Skyfall (2012)
Skyfall was a game-changer for the Bond franchise. With a new director in Sam Mendes and a darker, more introspective storyline, the film breathed new life into the series. This time, Bond must face off against a former MI6 agent who is out for revenge. With stunning visuals, a haunting theme song by Adele, and an Oscar-winning performance by Javier Bardem as the villain Silva, Skyfall is a standout Bond film.
4. From Russia with Love (1963)
From Russia with Love was the second Bond film ever made, and it still holds up as one of the best. In this classic spy thriller, Bond must retrieve a valuable decoding machine while evading Russian agents and a deadly assassin. The film features some of the franchise’s most memorable action scenes, including a boat chase through the canals of Venice.
5. On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)
On Her Majesty’s Secret Service is often overlooked in the Bond canon, but it deserves more recognition. This film marked George Lazenby’s only outing as 007, and he brings a fresh energy to the role. The story follows Bond as he falls in love with a woman named Tracy and takes on his arch-nemesis Ernst Stavro Blofeld. The film’s dramatic ending is one of the most emotional moments in the entire franchise.
6. GoldenEye (1995)
After a six-year hiatus, the Bond franchise returned with a bang in GoldenEye. Pierce Brosnan made his debut as 007, and the film was a hit with audiences and critics alike. The story centers around a stolen satellite weapon and features iconic villains like Xenia Onatopp and Alec Trevelyan. GoldenEye also introduced a new M played by Judi Dench, who would go on to become a beloved character in the series.
7. Dr. No (1962)
The first Bond film ever made, Dr. No set the tone for all the movies to come. Sean Connery stars as Bond, investigating the disappearance of a fellow agent in Jamaica. Along the way, he meets the beautiful Honey Ryder and takes on the titular villain, a sinister scientist with plans for world domination. Dr. No is a classic spy thriller with all the hallmarks of the Bond franchise.
8. The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
The Spy Who Loved Me is one of the most beloved Bond films of the Roger Moore era. In this adventure, Bond teams up with Soviet agent Anya Amasova to investigate the disappearance of nuclear submarines. The film features one of the franchise’s most iconic villains in the form of Jaws, a hulking assassin with metal teeth. The underwater battle scene at the end is a highlight of the film.
9. Thunderball (1965)
Thunderball is another classic Bond film that sees 007 taking on the evil organization SPECTRE. This time, Bond must retrieve two stolen nuclear warheads and faces off against the villainous Emilio Largo. The film is known for its stunning underwater sequences and features a memorable theme song by Tom Jones.
10. Licence to Kill (1989)
Licence to Kill is a darker, grittier Bond film that sees 007 going rogue to avenge the death of his friend Felix Leiter. Timothy Dalton delivers a standout performance as Bond, and the film features a memorable villain in the form of drug lord Franz Sanchez. Licence to Kill was a departure from the typical Bond formula and is often overlooked, but it deserves more recognition as one of the franchise’s most unique and underrated entries.
The Bond franchise has given us some of the most thrilling and iconic films in cinematic history. From the classic spy thrillers of the 1960s to the more modern, action-packed adventures of recent years, Bond movies continue to captivate audiences around the world.
The 10 films listed here represent the best of the best and are essential viewing for any Bond fan.