It is also the first in the series with a title not taken from one of Ian Fleming's Bond stories; in the film, "GoldenEye" is the code name of a secret military satellite, but in real life the producers chose the name because it was the name of the house in which Fleming was living when he wrote the first James Bond novel.
The beginning of the movie shows James Bond and his friend Alec Trevelyan, agent 006, infiltrating a base in Arkhangelsk in the Soviet Union, now Russia. Trevelyan is captured and presumably killed at the hands of Colonel Arkady Grigorovich Orumov, but Bond escapes.
Several years later, after the collapse of the USSR, a woman named Natalya Fydorovna Simonova (surname pronounced Sim-yo-ni-va) becomes the only survivor of the attack on Severnaya led by Xenia Onatopp. Simonova is being chased by Janus operatives. This came after Janus operative Onatopp stole the Tiger helicopter. Bond is charged with finding Natalya and stopping Janus from its dastardly deeds. He discovers during his mission that Trevelyan is not only still alive, but in fact is the mastermind behind Janus.
The theme tune GoldenEye was performed by Tina Turner.