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Friday, October 1, 2021

the famous James Bond car - seen on the roads of Chennai !!

Before the pandemic struck and Covid 19 Corona virus became the most searched one - one of the most flourishing industry was Tourism – luxury tourism -  affluent people travelling to exotic locations to spend their money in peace.     Geographic distance never reduced the indomitable spirit of spending money at locations hitherto unexplored.  Perhaps this is not indexed by Nation but by affluence !  - those who have money spend their own money, none can grudge that – and the Communist view of giving it to poor becomes irrelevant as they themselves have modern offices earning lakhs in rent but would preach others to spend for others.  

The dictionary meaning of ‘luxury’ is : 

1: a condition of abundance or great ease and comfort : sumptuous environmentlived in luxury

2a: something adding to pleasure or comfort but not absolutely necessaryone of life's luxuries

b: an indulgence in something that provides pleasure, satisfaction, or ease

In economics, a luxury good (or upmarket good) is a good for which demand increases more than proportionally as income rises, so that expenditures on the good become a greater proportion of overall spending. Luxury goods are in contrast to necessity goods, where demand increases proportionally less than income. Luxury goods is often used synonymously with superior goods. The word "luxury" originated from the Latin word luxuria, which means exuberance, excess, abundance. Luxury goods have high income elasticity of demand: as people become wealthier, they will buy proportionately more luxury goods.  

For many – a car is luxury – those days, cars with AC were different than its normal ones – now AC in a car is a bare necessity ! A luxury car is a car that provides increased levels of comfort, equipment, amenities, quality, performance, and status relative to regular cars for an increased price. Traditionally, most luxury cars were large vehicles, though smaller sports-oriented models were always produced. “Compact“ luxury vehicles such as hatchbacks, and off-road capable sport utility vehicles, are relatively modern trends.

The film released in 1964 before most of us were born - Goldfinger was heralded as the film in the franchise where James Bond "comes into focus". Its release led to a number of promotional licensed tie-in items, including a toy Aston Martin DB5 car from Corgi Toys which became the biggest selling toy of 1964. The promotion also included an image of gold-painted Eaton on the cover of Life. Life has moved on – from Gold Finger to just released ‘No Time to Die’ – a  spy film and the 25th in the James Bond series produced by Eon Productions. It stars Daniel Craig in his fifth and final outing as the fictional British MI6 agent. It is directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga.

Time, death, past and future are a deep, recurring theme in this 25th Bond film. It also, of course, marks the end of the Daniel Craig era —that will be a very hard act to follow. For all that, No Time To Die — with no less than four screenwriters including the director himself (True Detective’s Fukunaga), old Bond hands, and the much-anticipated Phoebe Waller-Bridge addition — is much too long, much too convoluted, and much too un-Bond like. Part of the reluctance to end sooner, one suspects, has to do with the burden of saying goodbye to the actor who has moulded the character born circa World War II for the 21st century, where heroes don’t just have big hearts but also heavy ones, and wear the same on their sleeves.  Craig doesn’t just bruise, he hurts. He doesn’t just ripple with muscle; he ripples with the creases that years of seeing unspeakable horrors have left on his face. And what a face that is — the crowning glory of this Bond, more than his body, which is nicely decked out variously from brief briefs to tight tuxedos. It has eyes that burn into you, it has lines that evoke its pain, it has a smile that warms your heart, it has a twinkle that few can resist, and it has tears that flow down easily. No Time To Die can’t have enough of Craig. And that is both what saves and dooms it. – review in Indian Express about the movie !!

James Bond is a fictional character created by the British journalist and novelist Ian Fleming in 1952. The literary character appeared in a series of twelve novels and two short story collections written by Fleming and a number of continuation novels and spin-off works after Fleming's death in 1964. There have been twenty-seven films in total, produced and released between 1962 and 2021. Fleming portrayed Bond as a tall, athletic, handsome secret agent in his thirties or forties; he has several vices, including drinking, smoking, gambling, automobiles and womanising. He is an exceptional marksman, and he is skilled in unarmed combat, skiing, swimming and golf. While Bond kills without hesitation or regret, he usually kills only when carrying out orders, while acting in self-defence, and occasionally as revenge.

Goldfinger  released in 1964 was Bond movie   starring Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent  and was the first of four Bond films directed by Guy Hamilton. .. and the car Aston Martin became a super hit !   Aston Martin Lagonda is a British independent manufacturer of luxury sports cars and grand tourers. Its predecessor was founded in 1913 by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford. Steered from 1947 by David Brown, it became associated with expensive grand touring cars in the 1950s and 1960s, and with the fictional character James Bond following his use of a DB5 model in the 1964 film Goldfinger. Their sports cars are regarded as a British cultural icon. 

The headquarters and main production of its sports cars and grand tourers are in a 22-hectare (55-acre) facility in Gaydon, Warwickshire, England on the former site of RAF Gaydon, adjacent to the Jaguar Land Rover Gaydon Centre. Its Formula One team is headquartered in Silverstone, with a new 37,000 square metres (400,000 sq ft) facility set to be operational by 2023.

In India, the car price is around Rs. 3 crores   Aston Martin offers 2 car models in India, 1 car in Coupe category, and the other in  Convertible category.  .. .. obviously it is a luxury car ! and not many own them .. .. today saw one on Radhakrishnan Salai, nearer Mount road fly-over. Life has changed and in the days of Corona, a healthy life is the ultimate luxury !

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
1st Oct 2021 

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