THE BILLION DOLLAR THREAT (1979)
Article 2961 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 6-16-2009
Posting Date: 9-22-2009
Directed by Barry Shear
Featuring Dale Robinette, Ralph Bellamy, Keenan Wynn
A government agent is sent to Utah to investigate reports of UFOs.
Apparently, the continued financial success of the James Bond franchise in the late seventies inspired some attempts to resurrect the spy genre for TV; this pilot was one of those attempts. With its rating of 3.9 on IMDB, I can only conclude that it is not a popular favorite, but I have to say that it does about as good a job as I’d expect a TV-Movie/series pilot in emulating a James Bond movie. Perhaps the problem is that it emulates it a little too well; the movie never takes on a life of its own and remains at all times an example of ersatz low-budget Bond. Still, I found it enjoyable enough in this regard, and the cast (which includes Ralph Bellamy, Keenan Wynn and Patrick Macnee) do help to make it fun. Furthermore, some of the location footage is quite beautiful. Take it for what it is, and you could do worse.