Why? Well, I just love the art, honestly. I guess these are the same as the "posters" for the films in question, but these illustrations evidence a kind of creative fantasy vision that, frankly, I find missing from many movie posters today.
Ever notice how, following Scream (1996), I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) and H20 (1998), so many movie posters, both inside and outside the genre, are just a bunch of attractive faces/heads, against a black background. It's like packaged head shots or something. I really hate that, and think it's uninventive. It's ironic that as special effects have improved and movies like Revenge of the Sith, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory show us new worlds, the movie posters have become increasingly bland.
But just look at the album cover art for the Bond flicks, going right up into the 1980s. I would love to have wall-sized posters of these beautiful pieces.
Getting back to the albums, however, it's really amazing what a consistently great job John Barry did scoring so many of the Bond films. He was truly missed on the ones he didn't do, such as Bill Conti's very cheesy 1980s score for For Your Eyes Only.
Of course, the Bond theme itself was written by Monty Norman, and has become the series' trademark just as much as the famous gun barrel opening. Let's hope neither element gets cast aside for the upcoming "re-boot" of the series, Casino Royale starring Daniel Craig.
Over the years, so many great vocalists have contributed to the Bond mystique too, from Shirley Bassey (Goldfinger), to Nancy Sinatra (You Only Live Twice), to my personal favorite of the Bond theme songs, Live and Let Die, by Paul McCartney and Wings. You've also had performances by Carly Simon (The Spy Who Loved Me), Sheena Easton (For Your Eyes Only), Rita Coolidge (Octopussy), Duran Duran (A View to A Kill) and Tina Turner (Goldeneye). Thinking of the recent Pierce Brosnan Bonds, the theme tunes have been far less memorable than I would like. And Madonna's Die Another Day? Don't get me started. I thought everything about that movie, from the soundtrack and theme song to the villain and so-called plot, was the "nadir" of the Bond series. And that's saying something, when you consider Moonraker or Diamonds Are Forever...
What's your favorite Bond theme song?