Tuesday, March 17, 2015

From Russia with Love (1963)

Yay! A film based on my favorite book - From Russia with Love!  This is the second Bond film made, both starring Sean Connery.  Bond has such cool stuff. He has a folding rifle, car phone, mini tape recorder, and this book was written in 1957!  Bond is straight up future!

The movie is a bit more convoluted than the book.  Originally, it was simply the Russians who set up Tatiana to meet Bond.  But the filmmakers had to toss SPECTRE into the mix again, rendering the Russians innocent.  So SPECTRE is playing the Russians and the British against each other.

Tatiana is played by Daniela Bianchi, who won Miss Universe in 1960.  Bond in the movies look different from the books, mainly because we have to look at him.  He has black hair, blue eyes, and has scars.  He's not great looking.  Ian Fleming intended him to be a dull person that awesome things happen to.  But in the movies he's different.

Even though MI6 knows it's a trap, they send Bond to retrieve the Lector (a codebreaking machine) from Tatiana, who has promised it in return for safe passage to England.  Bond meets Kerim Bay while in Turkey, who helps him during his mission.  They decide to travel by train to England.  It would have been smarter and quicker to travel by plane, because Bond flew to Turkey, didn't he?  Well this is what we call a plot device, since traveling on a train will take days, there's more chance of dangerous and exciting things happening.  There'd be no movie if he just flew back!
Lots of villains try to attack Bond, but fail. There's lots of action, and even a boat chase! Exciting!
Remember when I mentioned that Bond dies in this novel? Well he does. He's killed by Klebb, the scary Soviet lady.  In the movie, she's more timid of her boss rather than scary.  She's killed by Tatiana in an effort to prove her loyalty, so Bond doesn't die in the film.
Even though the filmmakers made this film more complicated than it needed to be, it was still an enjoyable watch.  I will give it a 6/10.

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