It is simply astounding that the James Bond film series is still ongoing – it is, in fact, the longest-running series in cinema. Officially, there are 23 films, which doesn't include a short 1954 television adaptation of the novel “Casino Royale,” the 1967 parody of the same name (which, by the way, is definitely worth watching – starring Peter Sellers, Woody Allen, and Orson Welles, among others), or the 1983 film Never Say Never Again, a remake of Thunderball, the fourth Bond film. (It is also the second-highest grossing film series of all time – an honor lost to the Harry Potter film series, which is pretty impressive considering the size discrepancy.) In October the 23rd Bond film, Skyfall, will be released to theaters, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the release of Dr. No, the very first Bond film. Daniel Craig returns for the third time as 007, with Javier Bardem as the villain Raoul Silva and Naomie Harris as “Bond Girl” Eve.
As I said, the first Bond film debuted fifty years go – but it is the sequel with which we are concerned today: 1963's From Russia With Love, wherein Bond travels to Turkey to meet the Soviet consulate clerk Tatiana Romanova, who wishes to defect. Naturally, the mysterious SPECTRE (SPecial Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge, and Extortion) is involved and the result is two hours of guns, girls, gadgets, and car chases.
From Russia With Love screens this evening at Iroquois Amphitheater as this week's Monday Night Movie. Admission is free and the film begins at 8:30. The Iroquois Amphitheater is located at 1080 Amphitheater Road in Iroquois Park.
Image: Internet Movie Database