From Russia with Love on Prime Video— Oh James!

Just Awesome Man. source

For about two minutes, somewhere in the middle of the really long train sequence, I was beginning to get bored. I was starting to wonder, why…why is this the greatest Bond movie ever made? Then, suddenly, the assassin from SPECTRE does a quick disguise and has Bond under his control.

The next five minutes is amongst the most intense low key spy scenes I have ever seen in my life. Suddenly, everything that came before it started falling in place.

That is when, I went back to my notes, and added a remark. This, From Russia With Love, is the gold standard against which all Bond movies would be measured against.

SPECTRE Ominousness

Number Three You Evil Villainess

Having received a mention in Dr. No, SPECTRE shows up in full effect here. If anything, there is no James Bond at all for a huge portion of the first act of the movie. The focus is specifically on how resourceful, large and incredibly powerful SPECTRE is.

The movie never shows Number 1, but, we do get to see his evil looking cat and hear his scary voice. For all I can think of, Number 1 is perhaps an inspiration for Voldemort. Further, Number 1 and SPECTRE appear like they are inspired by Moriarty. I am beginning to see that fiction bounces off ideas from each other.

Everybody takes ideas from everywhere else and makes its there own.

In a classic case of ‘show not tell’, we are shown a fish tank where two fish are fighting, while a third fish waits for the tired victor to emerge. Then, the third first takes the victor anyway. Then, perhaps to impress upon the effect, the third fish is picked off the tank, and fed to the cat.

There is always a bigger fish.

Such, simple but effective visuals. It sounds silly. Watching a megalomaniac villain who controls a vast empire sitting with a cat on his lap. It’s silly. But, nothing about what they do is silly. Almost immediately, even with no Bond in sight or any actual action or spectacle, I was already impressed with this movie.

M, Q and Money Penny

Look how confident this guy is.

Once again, the main Bond elements are such a pleasure to watch. Although this is only the 2nd movie, the movie is already making fun of its star, James Bond. Bond is always trying to impress Money Penny, so he starts by doing the classic, ‘throw my hat on to the hat rack and say something clever and dirty’ routine.

Then, M is standing right there, glaring at him for his stupid antics. I burst into laughter. Bond is clearly scared of M. I mean, Bond is not scared of death, but is deathly scared of M. Another great instance of ‘show not tell’. I love these tiny scenes, the attention to detail and getting some comedy out of it.

Once more James Bond, as played by Sean Connery, is the ultimate spy. As with the other movie, Sean Connery is topless just as much as the bond girls. He looks fine in a suit. He seems to have done some of the action scenes on his own. There is an intensity to his bond which I don’t see in other bonds, except perhaps Daniel Craig.

However, there is also a playfulness which Craig lacks but Moore and Brosnan have clearly enjoyed. I like it when a person enjoys their job, rather than just do it.

You can see in Sean Connery’s face, he is clearing enjoying being Bond. Traveling to exotic locations. Experiencing unusual events, and taking part in deathly events.

Top Quality Spy Threads

He looks fine in a suit.

Even after considering all the other bond movies, and the mission impossible movies, this movie has the best ‘spy’ story. An evil organization pits two super powers against each other, as a power grab. Nobody trust’s nobody. Bond does not trust the hot bond girl who is obviously a Russian Agent. The Russian agent does not trust the English guy, who wants his hand on this crypto machine thingy.

Then, he appears hotter than in photos, and is amazing at sex. Or, he is genuinely a nice guy. So, she falls for him. SPECTRE knows about it, anticipated it, so has a plan ready to convince the English guy that the Russian woman is in fact trying to create war. Bond now has to find out why and see what to do with her and with the villains.

Who do you trust? Turns and twists and turns.

Similar to Dr. No, this movie is also pretty light on action. However, the action ratchets up at the end. Suddenly there is the thrilling fight scene in the train. Then, the battle against the single helicopter. Which is impressive for there was no computer generated imagery in the 60s. Then, the surprise boat chase which ends in a fiery blaze.

After all this, the bizarre ‘defend self with chair against an old, frail woman’ in the hotel room. As with Dr.No, here also, there is so much silliness. I thought the silliness in Bond movies where a product of Moore’s comedy style. That’s not true though. These movies were always silly, and somehow, I get lost in it.

Like that cat fight between two bosom heavy women which happens for no reason? Or, the belly dance that preceded it? Then, later, bond is implied to have had threesome? The gadget filled suitcase with the exploding bomb. The frail old lady with knife shoes!

Then, the SPECTRE assassin? The mask removing twist? His super cool, cold calculating eyes. Then, suddenly he starts acting friendly and almost finishes off bond. Very Cool. I am super impressed.

Whoa!

I cannot stop but enjoy these stories.

Scoring

Belly Dancing For The Win

I am marathon watching the James Bond movies and I wish to rank them at the end. So, I came up with a numbering system. The scores for this one are here.

  1. Action and Stunts 9/9
  2. Coolness Cool 9/9
  3. Double Entendre and One Liners 9/9
  4. Hot Women 9/9
  5. Ludicrous Villainy, Cool Deaths and Traps 9/9
  6. Gadgets Man! 9/9
  7. General Awesomeness 9/9
  8. Boredom Factor 0/-9

Total : 63

Final Note

Tatiana is Super Hot

Now, I am in my 2nd movie into my James Bond marathon. This was also the first time I really, fully watched this movie. I was upset that there was no massive lair thing in this movie, the colorful assassins from SPECTRE make up for the lack of it.

It’s just an amazing movie. My expectations from what a James Bond adventure should be are so high now, I fully expect, the remaining movies to begin disappointing me, ever so lightly.

That’s okay though. I can always come back and watch the good ones when the other movies are not doing it for me.

I work as a full time freelance coding tutor. Hire me at UpWork or Fiverr or Stack Overflow. My personal website is here. Find more of my art at Behance and Unsplash. Also, I have a Podcast.

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an online publication about tech, training, rants and romance. updates every wednesday.

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Freelance Tutor — Coding, Generative Art and Photoshop. Full Name : Vijayasimha BR

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