James Bond

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Rosa Klebb approves of Red Grant.

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Kerim Bey gives Romanova and
Bond their forged passports aboard the Orient Express.

From Russia with Love (1963)

In a mansion garden late at night, James Bond is alternately stalking and being stalked by a tall, blond assassin. Bond is captured and strangled violently to death by the man named Red Grant, using a garrote wire hidden in a watch. Suddenly, huge floodlights switch on and the dead person turns out to be a man wearing Bond's disguise. This completes SPECTRE's training exercise.

Kronsteen, a chess grandmaster, and SPECTRE's expert planner, has devised a plot to steal a Lektor cryptographic device from the Soviets, sell it back to them, and also punish MI6 (the British Secret Service) for killing their agent Dr. No. Ex-SMERSH operative Rosa Klebb is put in charge of the mission by the megalomaniac Blofeld. She has already chosen a female pawn: Tatiana Romanova, a cypher clerk at the Soviet consulate in Istanbul. Klebb departs to SPECTRE Island, the organisation's secret training base, and approves Red Grant as an assassin.

In London, M tells Bond that Romanova has contacted their "Station 'T'" in Turkey, offering to defect with a Lektor, which MI6 and the CIA have been after for years. She has said that she will only defect to Bond, whose photo she has allegedly found in a Soviet intelligence file. In fact she is following orders from Klebb, who pretends she is still working for SMERSH and that this is a SMERSH deception.

Bond flies to Istanbul to meet station head Ali Kerim Bey. He is followed from the airport by an unkempt man in glasses, and by Red Grant.

The next day, after Kerim Bey's office is bombed, Bond and Kerim Bey spy on the Soviet consulate using a periscope from an underground tunnel beneath the consulate. Seeing rival agent Krilencu, Kerim Bey takes Bond to a rural gypsy settlement, where Kerim Bey plans to lie low while deciding how to deal with Krilencu. However the camp is attacked by Krilencu's men. Grant, lurking nearby, shoots a man who is about to kill Bond. Although he is wounded in the attack, Kerim Bey kills Krilencu the next night with Bond's sniper rifle. When Bond returns to his hotel suite, he finds Romanova in bed waiting for him. Bond and Romanova make love, unaware that they are being filmed by Grant and Klebb.

The next day, Romanova heads off for a pre-arranged rendezvous at Hagia Sophia. Bond follows her and stalks the bespectacled man who had followed him at the airport. But unknown to Bond, the man is killed by Grant. When Bond finds the body, he also finds the floor plans for the Soviet consulate that Tatiana was smuggling out for him. Kerim Bey and Bond set up a plan to steal the Lektor and smuggle it back to Britain. On the appointed day, Bond enters the consulate lobby. Kerim Bey then sets off an explosion under the building, releasing tear gas. In the resulting chaos, Bond finds Romanova and escapes with the Lektor on the Orient Express. Kerim Bey and a Soviet security officer named Benz, who recognises Romanova, also board the train, but Grant stealthily kills both of them, making it seem as if they killed each other.

The train crosses southern-central Europe to Belgrade. There Bond arranges for agent Nash from "Station 'Y'" to meet him at Zagreb. Grant intercepts and kills Nash, boards the train, and meets Bond as Nash. He drugs Romanova at dinner with a knock-out pill in her wine, then overcomes Bond. Grant taunts him, boasting SPECTRE has been pitting the Soviets and the British against each other. He also claims that Romanova thinks that "she's working for mother Russia" when she is really working for SPECTRE. Bond offers to buy his last cigarette for 50 gold sovereigns, luring Grant to open his attach case, which releases tear gas. In the ensuing struggle, Bond stabs Grant with the throwing knife hidden in the attach case, and then strangles Grant with his own garrote. At dawn, Bond and Romanova leave the train, hijack Grant's getaway truck, destroy an enemy helicopter by sniping the pilot who drops a live grenade, and drive to a dock, eventually boarding a powerboat.

Blofeld is very unhappy, and summons Kronsteen and Klebb. He reminds them that SPECTRE does not tolerate failure; they blame each other. Blofeld calls in Grant's trainer Morenzy to carry out the punishment for failure, so he kills Kronsteen with a poisoned spike in the toe of his shoe. Blofeld tells a shaken and perspiring Klebb that she has another chance - but must not fail again.

Klebb sends Morzeny after Bond with a squadron of SPECTRE's boats. When stray bullets puncture several barrels of fuel stored on his boat, Bond throws them overboard. Pretending to surrender, he fires a signal flare into the fuel, engulfing all the enemy boats in flames.

Bond and Romanova reach Venice and check into a hotel. Rosa Klebb, disguised as a maid, attempts to steal the Lektor. In the climax, Klebb gets the drop on Bond, and holds him at gunpoint but the gun is knocked away by Romanova. Klebb releases her poisoned toe-spike, but Bond narrowly dodges her kicks and pins her to the wall with a dining chair. Romanova grabs the gun and shoots Klebb. Riding in a gondola, Bond throws the illicit film of him and Romanova into the canal, and they sail away.


  • Sean Connery as James Bond: British Intelligence agent.
  • Daniela Bianchi as Tatiana Romanova (voiced by Barbara Jefford):[2] Soviet Embassy clerk and Bond's love interest. Fleming based Romanova on Christine Granville.[3]
  • Lotte Lenya as Rosa Klebb: Ex-SMERSH Colonel, now Chief Operations Officer for SPECTRE.
  • Robert Shaw as Red Grant: SPECTRE assassin and principal Bond enemy.
  • Vladek Sheybal as Kronsteen: Chess grand-master and Chief Planning Officer for SPECTRE.
  • "?" (anonymous credit for Anthony Dawson) as "Number 1" (Ernst Stavro Blofeld): Chief of SPECTRE and Bond's nemesis.
  • Pedro Armendariz as Ali Kerim Bey: British Intelligence Station Chief in Istanbul.
  • Walter Gotell as Morzeny: SPECTRE thug.
  • Bernard Lee as M: Chief of British Intelligence.
  • Lois Maxwell as Miss Moneypenny: M's secretary.
  • Desmond Llewelyn as Q: Head of 'Q' Section (British Intelligence gadgetry department).
  • Eunice Gayson as Sylvia Trench: Bond's semi-regular girlfriend.
  • Aliza Gur and Martine Beswick as Vida and Zora, respectively: Gypsy girls which are disputing the same man.

Directed by Terence Young Produced by Harry Saltzman Albert R. Broccoli Novel/Story by Ian Fleming Screenplay Richard Maibaum Johanna Harwood (adaptation) Cinematography by Ted Moore, BSC Music by John Barry Main theme From Russia with Love Composer Lionel Bart Performer Matt Monro Editing by Peter R. Hunt Distributed by United Artists Released 10 October 1963 (UK) 8 April 1964 (USA) Running time 115 min.

The film features the first appearance of Desmond Llewelyn as Major Boothroyd, known as Q, the character he would play in all but two of the series' films until his death in 1999. However, screen credit for Llewelyn was omitted at the opening of the film and is reserved for the exit credits. The Q character appeared in the previous film, Dr. No, portrayed by actor Peter Burton, and addressed by M initially as "Armourer," and as Major Boothroyd by Bond.



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