Lots of Labor Day auctions and sales celebrate summer holiday weekend
The other day for no particular reason, the song, “Goldfinger” popped into my head. The theme from the film of the same name, Goldfinger was sung by Shirley Bassey. As I sang the song from one of my favorite movies, I was impressed with my ability to remember all the words and sing the entire song to myself. Shirley Bassey’s outstanding voice did a great job on the song and she went on to sing the themes for two additional Bond movies.
I remember being thrilled when seeing Goldfinger at the theater with my friends when I was about 11. I may have been too young to see the film, but my friend’s father said we’d enjoy the action/adventure of the movie, and film ratings were nearly non-existent in the mid-60s. The sexual overtones went right over me and friends’ heads as we were too busy watching all the action!
Goldfinger came out in 1964, and was a huge success. I had never seen a movie quite like it before – Sean Connery was handsome, suave, smart and one step ahead of the villain, Auric Goldfinger, played by Gert Frobe. At that time, I hadn’t seen the two previous Bond films that were released before Goldfinger (“Dr. No,” and “From Russia with Love”). I also liked the comedic banter mixed in with dangerous activities that Bond and his many girlfriends got into.
Some of the coolest parts of the film include a girl killed by being painted in gold paint, Oddjob’s handwork with his steel-rimmed derby and of course, James Bond’s car.
And this was no ordinary vehicle. Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 had some interesting extra features –a Browning 30-caliber machine gun in each fender; and wheel-hub mounted tire slashers; smoke screen technology and the piece de la resistance, the ejector passenger seat.
I can remember thinking that the car in the film was really cool and would help James Bond get away from Goldfinger and his henchmen, who were planning on robbing Fort Knox of U.S. Gold. Those extra spy-like features on the car were designed by “Q” who outfitted James Bond with lots of gadgets throughout his novels and films.
Getting back to Bond’s car, I was surprised to hear about the sale of the car just one day after the song popped into my head. So we’re jumping ahead 50-some odd years to learn that the car has been sold at auction by RM Sothebys in Monterrey, California. The pre-auction estimate for the Aston Martin was between $4 and $6 million. But before the hammer came down the Bond car sold above estimate at $6.4 million on Aug. 15. All of the Bond modifications are fully functioning following a full restoration, so the winning bidder will be able to make use of smoke screen dispensers, revolving license plates and a passenger-seat ejection system.
Searching on the Internet for information about the car and the auction, I came across CNN’s story on the sale and got this quote.
"No other car in history has played a more important leading role on film and in pop culture than the Aston Martin DB5," Barney Ruprecht, a car specialist at RM Sotheby's, said in a press release ahead of the sale.
I’ve seen other Bond films, but for me, the very best of the bunch was Goldfinger. And the only James Bond for me is, and remains, Sean Connery.
Now I have to see the film again—hopefully it’ll show up on cable soon.
With Labor Day weekend coming up, we’re celebrating the unofficial end of summer –but don’t despair! There are loads of auctions and sales to help mark the holiday weekend. Check out this week’s Collectors Journal for listings of auctions, flea markets and sales that feature “just what you may be looking for.”
A machinery, antiques and household auction is Aug. 31 at 2864 510th Avenue in Graettinger, Iowa beginning at 10 a.m. Included in this auction will be a selection of antiques including a 3-door icebox; oak rocking chairs; McDougal sideboard with flour bin; Red Wing crocks and much more. Howell Real Estate & Auction is handling the auction of Walter Ulrich’s Estate. More information about this auction is at (712) 362-4844 or online at www.howellrealestateandauction.com.
The Grand Champion Antiques Fair & Blue Ribbon Flea Market takes place over Labor Day weekend –Aug. 31, Sept. 1 and Sept. 2 at the Dickinson County Fairgrounds, 1602 15th Street in Spirit Lake, Iowa. Dozens of upscale Midwest dealers will be on hand. More information is at (712) 336-0479.
I hope everyone has a wonderful Labor Day weekend at an antique show, auction or sale. Please contact us with club and convention news; Auction Action news; mystery items; unusual collections; and other antiques-related matters at email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org or via telephone at (319) 472-4763.