Everybody remembers A View to a Kill for Grace Jones, Duran Duran and Christopher Walken threatening to annihilate San Francisco while sporting some seriously strange hair. But the film starts a long way away, with Bond nosing around a military station somewhere in the chilly reaches of the Soviet Union. He’s inevitably discovered, and has to evade a base full of bad guys on skis, on snowmobiles and in a helicopter. It’d all be exciting if it hadn’t all been done before — and in many cases better — in earlier Bond films. The one twist this time? After having a stolen snowmobile shot out from under him, Bond takes one of its skis and fashions it into a snowboard. This was 1985, remember. It’s entirely possible there are people out there who think that James Bond invented snowboarding thanks to this movie.
If anybody remembers anything at all about this opening sequence, in fact, it’s that filmmakers decided to score Bond’s snowboard escape with the Beach Boys’ “California Girls” — a decision that in retrospect feels very ill-advised.