The Cold War of 1945-1989 was a bad movie, with commies hiding under every bed and nukes of Damocles hanging over every head. A bad time to be alive and a great time to have behind us, at least until Hillary Clinton, pouting because she lost an election, singlehandedly revived it.
The second James Bond film, From Russia with Love (not to be confused with Trailer Park Boys' grease film From Russia with the Love Bone), is a First Cold War entertainment. The white hats are spy Bond (Sean Connery) and Russian agent Tatiana Romanova (Daniela Bianchi), the black hats are, among others, SPECTRE operatives Donald Grant (Robert Shaw) and Rosa Klebb (Lotte Lenya).
Alex on Film says this about Grant and Bond:
The line where Grant talks about Bond having to crawl and kiss his (Grant’s) foot isn’t in the book. Was it improvised? Bond is, of course, a gentleman agent (what he’s called in the trailer) and a snobbish member of the upper class. He’s on to Grant as soon as he orders the wrong wine at dinner. In the book though Grant is a psychopathic serial killer triggered by phases of the moon, not someone with much of a class consciousness. He’s only working for the Russians because they let him kill people...
Watching the movie again after many years got me imagining things from the viewpoint of the women. My comment on Alex on Film's post (with added screenshots) follows.
Poor Rosa Klebb. She learned a valuable lesson here: Never send a “paranoid murderer” to do the work of a real spy. Instead of testing Grant’s muscle tone by sucker punching him,
she should have been asking him if Chianti was really the best thing to drink with grilled sole.
Then, after her plans were thwarted by Bond, a super agent whose superiority she failed to anticipate, she goes after him alone, relying on a maid costume and poison tipped dart to stop him.
Also, while admiring Grant’s physique at the beginning, she should have been asking him if he had any class anxieties that might impair his judgment in a contest of wills with a real English (well, Scottish) gentleman. In the final Bond/Grant confrontation, Grant becomes rattled by Bond's savoir faire and loses the advantage.
And what will be Tatiana’s story here? A zealot for Mother Russia, pimped out by the woman-admiring Klebb, she loses her heart to the English agent...
Promptly after the credits roll, the agent will dump her for his next paramour, and she'll end her days in a dreary MI5 decoding pool. Or will she use her extraordinary beauty to “land” another English gentleman? Or will she be exchanged back to Russia to be debriefed about SPECTRE, sadder but wiser, but unlike Klebb, still alive? We can only speculate.