007: What would you have done differently?

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  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Back on Earth
    Posts: 33,068
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Cut the boat turmoil at the end and you've got a perfect film.

    everyones_mad_cheshire_cat.gif
  • edited May 2017 Posts: 669
    Is that Monty Norman music, or the John Barry additions to the DR. NO score? I ask because I don't think Norman was credited for anything more than the specific James Bond Theme. And likely over-credited. So to me it's a clue to how much Barry contributed in the first film. But yeah, it is garish in comparison.
    I am pretty sure the music used at the end of the boat chase (also used in Dr. No) is some stock music taken from a library. Not composed by Norman or Barry. Although... parts of it do sound a lot like the Bond theme. So I might be wrong. I don't have a source on hand at the moment for this. Does anyone know about this?
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    Robertson wrote: »
    No SPECTRE.

    So you basically want to change the whole film, then? I assume your ideal version of From Russia with Love would be a film that begins and ends with Bond having sex with Trench in a boat?
  • I'd at least like to see Blofeld a bit more in the film
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    From Russia is the film I'd probably change the least about, next to Casino Royale. Anything would be a nitpick, really, but I would agree to cutting Bond's wave at the end of the film as he throws the tape. Additionally, I would trim the ending string of action scenes. After Bond and Grant fight the film seems confused on how it's going to end itself and the helicopter sequence and boat chase come off as the filmmakers trying to pad the film to get a nice length, or to make the film more of an action film to grab audiences who may not like the slow burn spy plot.

    I would either lose the helicopter chase or boat chase, saving whatever is left. I don't like that all these SPECTRE goons find Bond as if they have GPS, and that Bond conveniently ends up traveling to the same location Blofeld is hiding out. The movie was far too clever to just cram in action at the end. I feel there was a better, more interesting way to lead to the hotel scene.
  • edited June 2017 Posts: 363
    From Russia With Love has been my #1 since '04 or '05. I love every frame - Connery and Young crafted something extraordinary. I don't think I would take anything away. I think showing some more of Grant's backstory would have been great, though. Shaw's performance is one of the best in the series easily.
  • edited June 2017 Posts: 173
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    Robertson wrote: »
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.

    That wouldn't really change anything, though. By changing SPECTRE to SMERSH, you change who perpetrates the acts against Bond, but not how they act. Like naming a villain Bob instead of Steve changes nothing, really.

    I think EON made a smart move not to call their dangerous organization the same name given to the real world Soviet intelligence arm, instead creating something that could stand on its own as a completely fictional entity. One thing I love about the films is that they never made real nations the big bads.
  • Posts: 173
    Robertson wrote: »
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.

    That wouldn't really change anything, though. By changing SPECTRE to SMERSH, you change who perpetrates the acts against Bond, but not how they act. Like naming a villain Bob instead of Steve changes nothing, really.

    I think EON made a smart move not to call their dangerous organization the same name given to the real world Soviet intelligence arm, instead creating something that could stand on its own as a completely fictional entity. One thing I love about the films is that they never made real nations the big bads.

    Unless of course Bob doesn't exist but Steve does. I wanted to see Bond fighting the Evil Empire, which is what he did in the literary version: From Russia, with Love.

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 5,102
    Bond going against the Soviet Union in the 1963 film FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE doesn't improve over the use of SPECTRE. Invoking politics absolutely wasn't the point, and it would have likely created a short run for the franchise.
  • Posts: 173
    But it would have entertained me, Little Richard, and that's all that matters.
  • Posts: 766
    It's great at it is, but if you ask me about VERY PERSONAL preferences I would have left Morzeny, Kronsteen or Klebb - only one of them - defeated but alive, maybe to strike again on TB or YOLT, or else be left at MI6's and KGB's [non-]mercy for their crimes and defection respectively.
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 5,102
    Robertson wrote: »
    But it would have entertained me, Little Richard, and that's all that matters.
    That makes sense, @Robertson. Colors.

  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    Robertson wrote: »
    Robertson wrote: »
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.

    That wouldn't really change anything, though. By changing SPECTRE to SMERSH, you change who perpetrates the acts against Bond, but not how they act. Like naming a villain Bob instead of Steve changes nothing, really.

    I think EON made a smart move not to call their dangerous organization the same name given to the real world Soviet intelligence arm, instead creating something that could stand on its own as a completely fictional entity. One thing I love about the films is that they never made real nations the big bads.

    Unless of course Bob doesn't exist but Steve does. I wanted to see Bond fighting the Evil Empire, which is what he did in the literary version: From Russia, with Love.

    It makes far more sense for a fictional series to have fictional adversaries for me. Blofeld being the leader of an nationless, independent organization more resourceful and crafty than any of the overt intelligence powers will always be more appealing than seeing Bond face a group that were only in operation for three years under Stalin.

    As @RichardTheBruce rightly pointed out, by avoiding politics the series was able to have more freedom, and avoid stepping on toes. The films always found more clever ways of crafting villains, and making them evil employees of the Russian state is rather boring. I much prefer seeing Bond working with the communists to face a threat, as he did wonderfully with Gogol and Pushkin. Seeing the east and west find similarities between themselves where propaganda said there were only differences is very engaging and a very unique way of portraying the Cold War tensions that Bond was born in. Instead of taking the easy way out and telling the evil Russian stories so many were telling, they did something completely new and, dare I say it, very mature.
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Robertson wrote: »
    Robertson wrote: »
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.

    That wouldn't really change anything, though. By changing SPECTRE to SMERSH, you change who perpetrates the acts against Bond, but not how they act. Like naming a villain Bob instead of Steve changes nothing, really.

    I think EON made a smart move not to call their dangerous organization the same name given to the real world Soviet intelligence arm, instead creating something that could stand on its own as a completely fictional entity. One thing I love about the films is that they never made real nations the big bads.

    Unless of course Bob doesn't exist but Steve does. I wanted to see Bond fighting the Evil Empire, which is what he did in the literary version: From Russia, with Love.

    It makes far more sense for a fictional series to have fictional adversaries for me. Blofeld being the leader of an nationless, independent organization more resourceful and crafty than any of the overt intelligence powers will always be more appealing than seeing Bond face a group that were only in operation for three years under Stalin.

    As @RichardTheBruce rightly pointed out, by avoiding politics the series was able to have more freedom, and avoid stepping on toes. The films always found more clever ways of crafting villains, and making them evil employees of the Russian state is rather boring. I much prefer seeing Bond working with the communists to face a threat, as he did wonderfully with Gogol and Pushkin. Seeing the east and west find similarities between themselves where propaganda said there were only differences is very engaging and a very unique way of portraying the Cold War tensions that Bond was born in. Instead of taking the easy way out and telling the evil Russian stories so many were telling, they did something completely new and, dare I say it, very mature.

    Couldn't disagree more. The start of the novel with General G, all the stuff with Kronsteen being scared he'll get sent to Siberia for delaying the order, the stuff about 'in the Soviet Union there are a lot of people who need killing' is fantastic stuff.

    The book is a Cold War thriller so why is the film so scared to make it one too? Why are the filmmakers so petrified not to offend the Soviets? It's 1963 when both sides hated each other. Did they think that having a western hero vanquish Soviet agents would have tipped them over the edge and made them press the button? If you take a look at Soviet films from the time I dare say they weren't shy about pumping the party line and denigrating us.

    Apart from anything adding in the whole SPECTRE layer makes things a bit more clunky than the simpler plot of the book. But then I suppose once they've already started down the SPECTRE route in DN they are trying to create a series so it makes sense. It's not something that pisses me off massively as the Blofeld scenes here are probably his best of the series (along with TB) but it's a crying shame we've never seen Bond combat SMERSH on film as they were always infinitely more fearsome than SPECTRE.



  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    Robertson wrote: »
    Robertson wrote: »
    @0BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Wrong. I would have liked a film that had the guts to film the plot of the novel on which it's allegedly based, which involved something called SMERSH.

    That wouldn't really change anything, though. By changing SPECTRE to SMERSH, you change who perpetrates the acts against Bond, but not how they act. Like naming a villain Bob instead of Steve changes nothing, really.

    I think EON made a smart move not to call their dangerous organization the same name given to the real world Soviet intelligence arm, instead creating something that could stand on its own as a completely fictional entity. One thing I love about the films is that they never made real nations the big bads.

    Unless of course Bob doesn't exist but Steve does. I wanted to see Bond fighting the Evil Empire, which is what he did in the literary version: From Russia, with Love.

    It makes far more sense for a fictional series to have fictional adversaries for me. Blofeld being the leader of an nationless, independent organization more resourceful and crafty than any of the overt intelligence powers will always be more appealing than seeing Bond face a group that were only in operation for three years under Stalin.

    As @RichardTheBruce rightly pointed out, by avoiding politics the series was able to have more freedom, and avoid stepping on toes. The films always found more clever ways of crafting villains, and making them evil employees of the Russian state is rather boring. I much prefer seeing Bond working with the communists to face a threat, as he did wonderfully with Gogol and Pushkin. Seeing the east and west find similarities between themselves where propaganda said there were only differences is very engaging and a very unique way of portraying the Cold War tensions that Bond was born in. Instead of taking the easy way out and telling the evil Russian stories so many were telling, they did something completely new and, dare I say it, very mature.

    Couldn't disagree more. The start of the novel with General G, all the stuff with Kronsteen being scared he'll get sent to Siberia for delaying the order, the stuff about 'in the Soviet Union there are a lot of people who need killing' is fantastic stuff.

    The book is a Cold War thriller so why is the film so scared to make it one too? Why are the filmmakers so petrified not to offend the Soviets? It's 1963 when both sides hated each other. Did they think that having a western hero vanquish Soviet agents would have tipped them over the edge and made them press the button? If you take a look at Soviet films from the time I dare say they weren't shy about pumping the party line and denigrating us.

    Apart from anything adding in the whole SPECTRE layer makes things a bit more clunky than the simpler plot of the book. But then I suppose once they've already started down the SPECTRE route in DN they are trying to create a series so it makes sense. It's not something that pisses me off massively as the Blofeld scenes here are probably his best of the series (along with TB) but it's a crying shame we've never seen Bond combat SMERSH on film as they were always infinitely more fearsome than SPECTRE.



    I wouldn't call it fear, I think they enjoyed the idea of showing true detente. In many ways the Bond films predicted the Glasnost period of Russian society, and the more diplomatic relationship between the world powers in the 80s. As I said, I find that dynamic far more rich and interesting than the usual depiction of the west as the golden heroes and the Soviets as the vile creatures of the east.

    Beyond that I wouldn't trade the presence of SPECTRE in the 60s films for anything, considering all they've influenced and spawned in pop culture and beyond while giving Bond an enemy that transcended nation or time.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Back on Earth
    Posts: 33,068
    All FRWL lacks is a personal angle and a traitor within.
  • Posts: 517
    Perhaps unpopular, but I might slightly rework Tatiana's role. Maybe a more striking actress, and played a bit less as a helpless naif. Not a huge problem for me, just might prefer a different take.

    I also agree that the action scenes (boat/helicopter) feel a bit baggy.
  • Posts: 12,141
    I would change nothing to DN or FRWL. DN is maybe more flawed but the flaws (the fight against Dr No for instance are part of its charm).
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    Posts: 23,883
    octofinger wrote: »
    Perhaps unpopular, but I might slightly rework Tatiana's role. Maybe a more striking actress,....
    Her mouth too big for you eh? She has a complex about that you know. ;-)
  • Posts: 517
    bondjames wrote: »
    octofinger wrote: »
    Perhaps unpopular, but I might slightly rework Tatiana's role. Maybe a more striking actress,....
    Her mouth too big for you eh? She has a complex about that you know. ;-)

    Oh dear - I walked right into that one, didn't I? Fair enough.

    I guess I just remember her being described in the novels as statuesque and impossibly beautiful; in the film she's almost a bit girlish and damsel-in-distressy for my liking.

    This is probably just a person bias - I prefer the female characters to be more competent and confident. And, obviously, to have mouths that are just the right size.
  • Posts: 12,141
    But that's the whole point of her character: she's a damsel in distress. Neither SMERSH nor SPECTRE would have taken a confident assertive woman who is more difficult to fool or manipulate.
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 5,102
    Hmm. And I thought her mouse was too big.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    Posts: 28,232
    I would describe Daniela as statuesque and quite striking. I think she's the most striking of her Bond era, really.

    It was also her function to play a very conflicted and submissive girl. Tatiana was being strung along and put between the Russian state and a top spy, and her mind is constantly caught between helping Bond and doing what is right, or following her orders and risking death if she refuses. I think Daniela plays that dynamic well, of a woman trying to smile through crippling fear.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Back on Earth
    Posts: 33,068
    Am I the only one who loves the boat chase? Its culmination reminds me very much of my favourite Jules Verne novel Michel Strogoff.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    Posts: 23,883
    I'm neither here nor there on it.

    It's not the greatest sequence, but perhaps that's because boat chases been done better since.

    The sequence that I would have liked them to have tightened up a bit is the gypsy camp fight with Krilencu's men. I've always found it a bit awkward, despite it also being the first time we hear the superb 007 theme.
  • Posts: 173
    Am I the only one who loves the boat chase?

    The boat chase feels totally out of place.

  • echoecho 007 in New York
    edited June 2017 Posts: 3,449
    Is that Monty Norman music, or the John Barry additions to the DR. NO score? I ask because I don't think Norman was credited for anything more than the specific James Bond Theme. And likely over-credited. So to me it's a clue to how much Barry contributed in the first film. But yeah, it is garish in comparison.

    Changes to FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE? There is the chance to use the cliffhanger ending with OO7's life in question. I guess the film needs the cheery ending, but something to think about.

    Damn, you took mine! End on Fleming's cliffhanger. It could have worked, given how closely the films were released back then.
  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,541
    A near perfect film. I don't mind the two chases at the end. I would keep them, maybe change the god awful music that accompanies them.

    I like Connery's wave to the film at the end. Fits the character in my opinion.

    I might extend Karim Bey. There was a scene filmed but the continuity of the scene was ruined as the Russian agent had already been killed. A shame as it would give us more Karim and he was one of my favourite allies.
  • BondAficionadoBondAficionado Former IMDBer
    Posts: 1,562
    I would of filmed less inside sets and given the film more room to breathe, like in Dr. No for example. It sometimes feels like everything takes place indoors and therefore it never reaches the scale/scope which we are used to in most JB films. Perhaps it's just because most of FRWL takes place in crowded urban locales and I'd prefer looking at a wide shot of Piz Gloria with it's never-ending slopes? That's just my preference though, and FRWL is still magnificent.
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