Ah, From Russia With Love. I’ve heard a lot of people say it’s between this and Goldfinger for the best Bond film. Is that because these are the ones that are generally pretty realistic? I’ve noticed that these early Bond films are pretty grounded, without the silly gadgets and bizarre villains I’ve heard so much about.

I found this one to be pretty restrained, all told. Except for some flourishes like the gypsies who wind up catering to our dashing hero. That shit was hilarious. The movie spends a ton of time on the train it seems, which was kind of boring but then that great and tense fight between Bond and “Nash” capped it very nicely.

I think my favorite scene was when Bond and Kirim (?) shoot that Bulgarian guy who pops out of that billboard’s mouth. The most non-sequitor action movie quip ever “She should have kept her mouth shut” cemented the cheese. But I also liked the simplicity of a couple of guys in suits putting together a small sniper rifle and shooting a guy only to slip away again. It made me think that things like that might happen fairly often in the covert world, or at least back in the day. It’s sort of ugly, not as elegant as what you’d think characters like Bond would do if they need to kill someone. But it definitely seems like something such an operative might do in real life. Made me think of Munich in some ways.

And like, I’m starting to wonder: does Bond ever fuck Moneypenny?