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"I could've given you the world."
"The world is not enough."
"Foolish sentiment."
"Family motto.
Elektra King and James Bond[src]

The World Is Not Enough is the nineteenth official James Bond film made by EON Productions and the third to star Pierce Brosnan as Ian Fleming's secret agent, James Bond. It was released in 1999, and produced by Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli. The film's story and screenplay was written by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade who later teamed again for 2002's Die Another Day, 2006's Casino Royale, and 2008's Quantum of Solace. It is the final film to have to Desmond Llewelyn as Q released one month before his death on December 19, 1999.

The title comes from the English translation of the Bond family motto, the Latin Orbis non sufficit, which was established and adopted by James Bond in Fleming's novel, On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

Plot summary[]


In Bilbao, capital of the Basque Country in Spain, James Bond, meets with a Swiss banker to recover a large sum of money. The banker, however, plans to have James killed. James uses a flash bang grenade disguised as his handgun to disable the banker's men and ends up holding the banker at gun-point. The banker had taken the money from another "00" and is about to tell Bond who the agent's assassin is when he himself is killed by a knife from his secretary, the Cigar-Smoking Woman. Bond grabs the case of money and is about to escape when another man tries to shoot him; that man is hit by an unseen sniper. Bond mananges to escapes out the window.


At MI6 headquarters in London, Bond returns the money to a wealthy businessman named Sir Robert King. King is and old friend of M. Bond learns that King is building an oil pipeline through the Caucasus region and that the project has been threatened with destruction from several competing factions. The money was ransom payment for King's kidnapped daughter. M hands Bond a glass of bourbon with ice and when the ice begins to foam up on his fingers, Bond deduces that the money may itself be an explosive. In a nearby lab, the metallic security strip in one of the bills explodes, killing King and blowing a large hole in the outer wall of MI6 HQ. Bond spots a woman on a boat who tries to shoot him with a rifle

Bond snatches the small, experimental, jet-powered boat belonging to Q and races after the woman, chasing her down the Thames and London streets. She tries several times to evade him however Bond catches up with her, finally destroying her boat near the Millennium Dome with a torpedo. The woman commandeers a hot-air balloon, with Bond hanging on to one of the anchor ropes. The woman, the Cigar Smoking Woman, points her handgun at the gas tanks on the balloon. Bond pleads with her not to fire, claiming MI6 will protect her. She says no one can protect her from "him". She then shoots the tanks and the balloon explodes, killing her and dropping Bond onto the Dome. The rolling and falling fractures his collarbone, but he's still able to arrest his slide down the side of the Dome by grabbing onto the support cables.


At Robert King's funeral service, Bond notices King's daughter, Elektra. At an MI6 retreat in Scotland, Bond discovers that Elektra was kidnapped sometime prior and held ransom. He notices that the money he recovered for King is equal to the ransom and concludes that King's death was a message. He heads to a briefing chaired by M who states that the suspect behind the bombing is a man named Victor Zokas, aka "Renard", an international terrorist. Renard had had been the mastermind behind Elektra's kidnapping but Elektra managed to escape by seducing her guards and killing them. Renard was subsequently hunted down by 009, who managed to shoot him in the head but the terrorist miraculously managed to survive. The bullet, still lodged in Renard's head, has slowly been travelling through and destroying the area of his brain that controls his senses. As a result, Renard no longer feels pain and is now able to push himself to the limits of human endurance until the bullet eventually kills him. M initially refuses Bond to take the assignment. However, 007 has seduced the MIG Chief Medical Officer who declared him healthy. M thus orders Bond to protect King's daughter.


Map of the King Pipeline

Map of the Middle East showing location of fictional King Pipeline and its three competitors.

Bond travels to Elektra's location near Baku, Azerbaijan, where she is overseeing the construction of her father's pipeline. Bond joins her on a brief inspection of the pipeline in the snow-covered mountains. They are attacked by a small group of men piloting "Parahawk" vehicles. Bond is able to stop them, causing a few of them to collide with the landscape or each other and explode. The last explosion causes an avalanche, burying Bond and Elektra. Bond deploys a rapid-inflating sphere to protect them, but Elektra panics from claustrophobia.

Seeking further information about Elektra's attackers, Bond goes to a casino owned by his old rival, Valentin Zukovsky, to find out more about Renard and the men who attacked him earlier. Zukovsky tells Bond that Renard was a former KGB agent and may be working for Russian oil barons in the region who want the King pipeline destroyed. They are summoned back to the main floor where Elektra has come to the casino to show she isn't afraid of her enemies . She loses on a high-low card draw.

In a Hindu pilgrim site, Renard meets with a man named Davidov, Elektra's security chief and a nuclear weapons scientist named Arkov, who also secretly works for Renard. Renard kills Arkov for failing to kill Elektra earlier and orders Davidov to take Arkov's place on a secret mission the next day. Bond slips out of Elektra's mansion after making love to her and goes to Davidov's office, looking for more leads. When Davidov returns, Bond kills him and manages to take his place on a plane.


TWiNE - Pomotional photograph of 007 and Renard (1)

Bond secretly accompanies Renard's men to Kazakhstan, to a decrepit Soviet underground nuclear weapons facility where warheads are distmantled. He meets the head scientist, Dr. Christmas Jones and goes down into one of the silos and finds Renard and his men stealing an active warhead. He briefly captures Renard and tries to force the criminal to reveal his plan. Renard resists, feeling no pain from Bond's blows. During the improvised interrogation, Renard uses a phrase Bond had previously heard from Elektra, "There's no point in living if you can't feel alive." and reveals he was the sniper during the encounter on Bilbao. Bond also notices that one of Renard's men has removed an electronic card from the bomb.

At that moment, Dr. Jones and other guards enter and she accuses Bond of being an impostor. Bond is forced to his knees by Renard, who presses on Bond's injured collarbone. Bond, Renard and his henchmen are about to be arrested when Renard's crew opens fire and cause an intensive firefight. He escapes with the scientist though Renard has stolen the nuclear warhead and the card was a tracking device.


Bond returns to Baku and harshly confronts Elektra, concluding that Elektra and Renard are in collusion. Elektra has convinced M to meet her and wen M arrives, Bond gives her a card and tells her his theory. M disbelieves her agent when suddenly, an alarm sounds. Renard has planted the warhead he stole on an inspection car that's travelling down the pipeline. Bond and Jones use another of the vehicles so that the scientist can defuse the warhead. While Jones dismantles the device, she finds that only half of the plutonium is there. Bond tells her to let the explosive charge detonate to create an illusion that they were killed.

Back at Elektra's command center, she gives the visibly upset M a gift: her father's lapel pin and her men kill M's personal protection ordrers. Elektra tells M that she killed her father out of revenge for using her to bait Renard. Bond and Jones are puzzled as to why Renard only used half of the plutonium.

Bond once again visits Zukovsky, this time at his caviar factory. While trying to gather further information from Zukovsky, they are attacked by Elektra's helicopters with hanging circular saw blades. Bond is able to destroy one of the helicopters with missiles fired from his BMW, but the other chopper saws his car in half. Bond uses a Flare Gun to ignite leaking gas from a nearby pipe, destroying the second helicopter. In the confusion, Zukovsky falls into a pit of his own caviar. While he struggles to free himself, Bond asks him what his connection to Elektra is. The former KGB agent tells him that he'd arranged for his nephew, a Russian Victor-III class submarine captain, to smuggle one submarine out of Russia and the Casino card payment was her payment to Zukovsky.


In Istanbul, Bond and Zukovsky work to discern Renard's plan. They figure out that a nuclear explosion in Istanbul would contaminate the Bosphorus, preventing all shipping out of the Black Sea, and rendering the Russian oil pipelines useless. That would leave only one viable method of extracting petroleum from the Caspian region; the pipeline owned by King Industries. The submarine will be detonated using the stolen plutonium and will look like an accident. When Bond and Zukovsky determine where the sub is docked, near the Maiden's Tower, Zukovsky's assistant, Mister Bullion, rushes out of the room, having planted an IED hidden in his briefcase. Bond and Jones manage to escape however Zukovsky is knocked unconscious. Outside the command center, Bond and Jones are captured by Renard's men.

Bond is taken to the Maiden's Tower and delivered to Elektra while Renard hold Jones captive on the stolen submarine. Elektra has Bond shackled to an antique chai turning a screw to cut off his breathing. Suddenly, Zukovsky and his men appear, killing Renard's and Elektra's men. When Zukovsky reaches the room where Elektra has Bond, he sees his nephew's captain's hat on a nearby table and he demands Elektra to return it to him. She however shoots Zukovsky. She turns her attention back to Bond, however the dying former agent fires a bullet from a cane gun, freeing one of Bond's shackles. 007 escapes and chases after Elektra freeing M along the way. Elektra taunts Bond, remarking he won't kill her since he made love to her and she's so beautiful. Bond nevertheless kills her and dives down, manging to enter the submerging Victo-class submarine. He finds and frees Jones and finds Renard inserting the Plutonium into the reactor core. After some fighting, Bond kills him and he and Jones surface as the submarine sinks.

Back at MI6 HQ, M, Q and the rest of her staff scan satellite channels looking for Bond. They find him in Istanbul, celebrating the New Year with Dr. Jones.

Cast and Characters[]

This was Desmond Llewelyn's last appearance as "Q" before his death in December, 1999. Llewelyn died in an automobile accident only a few weeks after the film's release. The film introduces "Q"'s successor, played by John Cleese, and jokingly referred to as "R" by Bond. In future movies, "R" takes over the job of Quartermaster, thus taking on the title "Q".



Film locations[]

  • Bilbao, Spain — Guggenheim Museum
  • London, UK — MI6 Headquarters and Millennium Dome
  • Scotland, UK — Eilean Donan castle
  • Baku, Azerbaijan
  • Istanbul, Turkey

Shooting locations[]


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Vehicles & gadgets[]

Main articles: List of James Bond vehicles and List of James Bond gadgets

  • BMW Z8 - Loaded with several Q refinements including ground to air missiles, a key chain that can control the car remotely, and as R proudly points out, cup holders. For films, this is the first car Bond is given by Q-branch where the steering wheel is on the left side.
  • Q Boat - used in the opening sequence. Was created by Q for his retirement.
  • Omega Watch - Bond's watch has the ability to shoot a grappling hook that can allow him to climb to new heights.
  • Protective Jacket - Q gives Bond a jacket, that when deployed encloses Bond and potentially another person inside a ball. This feature appears to be based on the Zorb.

Marketing & Merchandise[]

Twine concept

Concept teaser poster.

At the time of the film's release, MGM signed a marketing partnership with MTV, primarily for American youths who were assumed to have considered Bond to be "an old-fashioned secret service agent". As a result MTV broadcast more than 100 hours of Bond-related programs immediately after the film was released, most being presented by Denise Richards. The BMW Z8 driven by Bond in the film was the final part of a three-movie product placement deal with BMW (which began with the Z3 in GoldenEye and continued with the 750iL in Tomorrow Never Dies). Other promotional and product placement partners included Omega SA, Heineken, Smirnoff, evian, and Wilkinson Sword.

The film was released on DVD and VHS on 16 May 2000, and sold over 5 million copies. The initial release of the DVD includes the featurette "Secrets of 007", which cuts into "making of" material during the movie; the documentary "The Making of The World Is Not Enough"; two commentary tracks—one by director Michael Apted, and the other by production designer Peter Lamont, second unit director Vic Armstrong, and composer David Arnold; a trailer for the video game, the Garbage music video, and a "making of" booklet which featured trivia on the film's production and stills from the film. The Ultimate Edition boxed set release from 2006 had, as additional extras a 2000 documentary named "Bond Cocktail", a featurette on shooting the Q Boat scenes, Pierce Brosnan in a press conference in Hong Kong, deleted scenes, and a tribute to Desmond Llewelyn. The Ultimate edition was re-released individually in 2008 on DVD and Blu-ray; most recently it has been released as part of The James Bond 50th anniversary Blu-ray set and in bare-bones dvd form.


Featuring "The World Is Not Enough" performed by Garbage, the main soundtrack was composed by David Arnold. This is the second James Bond soundtrack composed by Arnold after he was hired to replace Éric Serra for 1997's Tomorrow Never Dies.


Released in conjunction with the release of the film, the novelisation was penned by Raymond Benson and adapted from the screenplay by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, and Bruce Feirstein.


Released in the fall of 2000 for Nintendo 64 and Sony PlayStation, The World Is Not Enough is a first-person shooter developed by Eurocom and Black Ops Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts.


  • During filming of the opening boat chase, web cams were set up overlooking the Thames River and Internet users could watch the filming from around the world.
  • This was the first official James Bond film not to have the United Artists logo at the start or at the end. All James Bond films starting with this film have the standard Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer logo.
  • This film is notable as being one of the few Bond movies in which James himself kills a leading female character. In the scene, Bond points a gun at her and threatens to shoot her if she contacts the enemy on her two-way radio. She replies that he can't kill her, because "You would miss me," possibly referring to their romantic involvement. He says nothing, and in the crucial moment, she defies him, alerting the enemy, and he promptly shoots her. Standing over her body, he says, tersely: "I never miss." An early version of the script has Bond shoot her in cold blood before she actually attempts to contact Renard. A longstanding stereotype regarding James Bond is that 007 routinely kills women he beds; in truth, the death of Elektra is the only occasion in the EON Bond film series in which this undeniably occurs (It is debatable whether Bond actually kills Fiona in Thunderball or if she is a victim of her men's poor shooting skills; he does, however, directly kill the version of the character that appears in the non-EON film, Never Say Never Again).
  • First James Bond film to show MI6 Headquarters being attacked, although not completely destroyed.
  • Although the producers have not acknowledged it, M's kidnapping is perhaps borrowed from the Kingsley Amis James Bond novel, Colonel Sun. One of the film's settings, Baku in Azerbaijan, is also one of the settings of the 1991 John Gardner Bond novel, The Man from Barbarossa.
  • The fictional news report which Bond views from the MI6 Archive was provided by BBC News. This was out of date by the time the film was released (November 1999) as the BBC relaunched their news output in May and Martyn Lewis (the newsreader) left the corporation at the same time.
  • The pipeline featured in the film is a thinly disguised fictional version of the real Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, which runs from the Caspian to the Mediterranean via the Caucasus. Unlike the film's "King pipeline", however, the BTC pipeline is almost entirely underground. As in the film, it is the only land route by which oil can be transported from the Caucasus to the Mediterranean.
  • Elektra's father is named Robert King. This is also the name of the co-writer of Your Deal, Mr. Bond, a collection of bridge-related short stories that included an unauthorised James Bond story.
  • The film ends with a joking reference to the Millennium Bug. More commonly referred to as Y2K, this was based on a well-publicised prediction that the rollover from 1999 to 2000 might cause widespread computer failures. This is one of the few moments in the Bond film series that directly ties it to a specific point in time.
  • When Sean Connery received the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award, Pierce Brosnan, in his tribute, revealed that Connery visited the set and watched Brosnan film one of the movie's action sequences. Afterwards, Brosnan joked, Connery asked Brosnan if they were paying him enough money.
  • This is the first James Bond film to have a pivotal chasing scene filmed on the Thames River, which would occur again 16 years later during the climax of Spectre.
  • This was the last Bond movie to be released in the 20th century and before the September the Eleventh attacks in New York.
  • This is the first James Bond film with the gunbarrel sequence's white dot expands to clearly reveal Bond himself, at closeup shoot. (In For Your Eyes Only, the dots expanding to the first shot of scenes shows Bond at an extreme distance, who could also be presumed as somebody else entering the graveyard instead of Bond)


See The World Is Not Enough (novelisation)


External links[]