Pierce Brosnan‘s debut as James Bond wasn’t as grand or satisfying as Daniel Craig’s would be eleven years later but, if nothing else, GoldenEye proved that we probably should’ve just skipped that Timothy Dalton fella altogether and just gone straight to Remington Steele (no offense, Mr. Dalton). Actually, GoldenEye is an above-average 007 adventure (and the first not taken from any of Ian Fleming’s original writings), a Cold War tale featuring Bond taking on an arms syndicate looking to use a satellite weapon against London to cause a financial meltdown. An ever-grizzled Sean Bean makes for a fine villain and Izabella Scorupco is definitely one of Bond’s loveliest-ever allies, but it’s Famke Janssen who steals this mission as Xenia Onatopp, one of the sexiest and, er, decidedly most dangerous female Bond villains in the history of the franchise (beware those deadly gams!). GoldenEye also features Judi Dench‘s debut as MI6 boss M, the voice of the screenplay’s unique feminist vibe. Director Martin Campbell, who keeps things fast and furious even when they get preposterous, would go on to also direct Craig’s 007 debut, Casino Royale.