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From Russia With Love
BLU-RAY disk
11.18.2008 By: Sturdy
From Russia With Love order
Director:
Terrence Young

Actors:
Sean Connery
Pedro Armendariz
Lotte Lenya

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Set up through an intricate plot from a mysterious terror group, Bond unwillingly assists the group to carry out their plans. But the group didnít count on Bondís charm and charisma to turn their key secret agent.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE is generally regarded as the best Bond film of all time and upon multiple viewings, I can see why. Itís not necessarily the Bond film I would reach for if I was in the mood for Bond, but when compared to most of the other films, this one has a good story and a twisting, evolving plot. Sure, it has its fair share of hokey moments and damsels in distress, but at least its sandwiched around a decent story.

As heralded as the film is, itís not without its problems. There are plot points that are glossed over for the sake of moving the film along and Bond tends to get out of his sticky situations a little too easily. The positive for the film is that this is where Connery hit his stride and heís very impressive as Bond. If you want to know why the world fell in love with Connery and Bond, this is the movie to start with. He seems very natural as he makes the ladies swoon and the bad guys tremble with fear.

Watching the older Bond films on Blu-ray makes you forget they were made in the 60ís. The picture quality is pristine and Iím amazed at how clean and near-perfect the transfers are. So as I scoff at the horrible fight scenes and the overly dramatic women, I have to remind myself that these films were made in the 60ís. Even the audio blows you away and Russia has never looked better than it does on Blu-ray.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Terrence Young, Walter Gotell, Martine Beswick, Aliza Gur, John Barry, Peter Hunt, Syd Cain, Norman Wanstall, John Stears, Dana Broccoli and David Naylor: Naylor is the only one here that wasnít involved in the making of the film and he acts as the moderator. As you might have guessed, thereís a lot of people here and some offer a lot to say and some donít say much at all. However, it keeps moving and is a joy to listen to, even if you canít figure out whoís saying what.

Ian Fleming, the CBC interview (7:43) and Ian Fleming and Raymond Chandler (5:12) and Ian Fleming on Desert Island Discs (5:11): These are two old interviews with the man himself, Ian Fleming. Fleming was a good writer with a good imagination, but donít think that he had any other motivation for writing than money (Chandler was the same way). However, fans of his work should enjoy the featurette.

Inside From Russia With Love (33:43): This is a good look at the making of the film with good insight into the problems they had filming and the reasoning behind their decisions. This is good for all fans of the film. These are really the highlight of the Bond Blu-rays and contain all the information you want about the film in a 30 minute package.

Harry Saltzman: Showman (26:42): Harry was the producer and this is his story. Itís a nice featurette on a pretty impressive fellow. Iím sure a lot of newly acquainted Bond fans will not know who he is, but others are more than familiar with his name.

There are also a series of cool, vintage TV commercials
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
If youíre picking and choosing which Bond movies to add to your Blu-ray collection, I think you have to have this one in it. Connery is the best Bond, and this is his best Bond film. Plus, this is an amazing video transfer.
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