Bond is instructed by M, via CIA agent Felix Leiter, to keep an eye on bullion dealer, Auric Goldfinger (Gert Frobe), who is staying at Bond’s hotel. He starts by thwarting Goldfinger, who is cheating at gin rummy, by distracting Jill Masterton (Shirley Eaton), one of Goldfingers employees. Bond has charmed his way into Goldfingers hotel room where she has binoculars trained on Goldfinger’s opponent, giving her boss instructions on what to play. Bond informs him that the police will arrest him if he’s found out and orders him to lose the game gradually. Jill pays for getting too close to Bond when Oddjob (Harold Sakata), Goldfinger’s manservant, knocks out Bond and Jill is found dead and covered with gold paint causing skin suffocation.
Bond has to discover how Goldfinger smuggles gold internationally so arranges to meet with him for a round of golf for a high stake, a gold bar which was smelted by the Nazis. Goldfinger loses the game because Bond, realising that Goldfinger’s henchman, Oddjob, has planted a ball in the rough, switches it and at the end of the game accuses Goldfinger of playing the wrong ball.
Bond then follows him to Switzerland using a tracking device which he has planted on Goldfinger’s car. On the way he literally runs into Tilly (Tania Mallet), Jill Masterton’s sister, after she unsuccessfully tries to assassinate Goldfinger.
Bond sneaks into Goldfinger’s plant after dark and learns that the gold is smuggled by melting it down and amalgamating it into the bodywork of Goldfinger’s car which goes with him everywhere. He also eavesdrops on a conversation between Goldfinger and Mr Ling, a Red Chinese agent, talking about Operation Grand Slam.
On leaving he sees someone pointing a rifle. It’s Tilly again as she has another attempt at killing Goldfinger. This time, however, as she and Bond struggle she manages to trip the alarm instead. Oddjob kills her and captures Bond who is then bound to a sheet of gold below an industrial laser which proceeds to cut it in half edging ever closer to Bond. He lies to Goldfinger telling him that MI6 knows about Operation Grand Slam and there will always be another agent to take his place including 008 who also knows about Operation Grand Slam. Goldfinger decides not to kill him so as to mislead MI6 into thinking that Bond has things under control.
Goldfinger’s personal pilot, Pussy Galore (Honor Blackman) flies Bond to Goldfinger’s stud farm near Fort Knox. She wastes no time in telling him that she is a lesbian so there is no point in him trying anything.
But again Bond manages to escape and he listens in on a conversation between Goldfinger and the US Mafiosi who are supplying the materials that Goldfinger needs for the operation. Although they are promised $1 million each their greed gets the better of them, even though they scoff at the plan, when Goldfinger suggests that they could have more the next day. This is a trick, however, and Goldfinger kills them using a nerve gas, the same as the one he plans to use on Fort Knox.
Bond is again captured and tells Goldfinger that his plan won’t work at which point Goldfinger suggest that maybe his intention isn’t to steal the gold. Putting two and two together Bond realises that he is planning to detonate an atomic device thus rendering the gold radioactive and useless but raising the value of Goldfinger’s own gold in the ensuing financial crisis.
And so Operation Grand Slam begins. However, Goldfinger doesn’t realise that Bond has seduced Pussy Galore and persuaded her to replace the nerve gas with a sleeping agent. He’s also alerted the US Government of Goldfinger’s plan and they instruct the army to pretend that they have been gassed.
Goldfinger’s own army breaks into the Fort thinking that the troops are dead with Goldfinger following in his helicopter carrying the atomic device. When the US troops attack, Goldfinger escapes dressed as a US Colonel but not before he kills Mr Ling and his own army.
Bond, who has been handcuffed to the device, manages to free himself but Oddjob gets to him before he gets to the bomb. There is a fight and Bond gets his hands on Oddjob’s metal-rimmed hat which he throws at Oddjob. He misses but the hat becomes embedded in some bars. Oddjob grabs his hat as Bond touches them with an electric cable that has been cut. Oddjob is electrocuted. Bond isn’t able to disarm the bomb but just in time the US army along with Leiter arrive with a bomb expert stops the clock just in time.
On his way to the White House to meet the President, Bond’s plane is hijacked by Goldfinger. A fight ensues and Goldfinger’s gun fires, shooting through a window. Goldfinger is sucked out and Bond and Pussy Galore parachute to safety before the plane crashes.