Venice – Canal Scene – The gondola scene is in Venice, andTania and Bond are now relaxing with the mission complete. The establishing shots are of the Doge Place, the Bridge of Sighs, the Venice canals. It looks like green-screen stuff with the actors superimposed against the background. One of the things we see here in the background is the Bridge of Sighs – for a short time behind Bond and Tania.
Some Venice History
Historically, The Bridge of Sighs, in olden times, was the bridge prisoners would cross over from the courtyard where they were just sentenced. Maybe sentenced to death or to prison and maybe even to the execution area. So, they knew they would never cross that bridge again or see the beautiful view of Venice they could see through the bridge’s barred windows. Hence, the sighs.
Here, in From Russia With Love, there could be a couple of meanings:
1) That Bond and Tania are now beyond the danger zone – they passed under the Bridge of Sighs and the mission is accomplished; they are out of danger; ahh!
2) or, it can be a sexual symbol – Bond is reviewing the film of he and Tania making love in the bridal suite (that Tania did not know about it as you recall) – and Grant was going to use this film as the reason Tania and Bond were dead. Grant would stage it so it looked like one was going to use it as blackmail against the other. Then murder and suicide. So the film had enough sexual content to be potent.
Bond is looking at it now and Tania asks what it is, and Bond just says that he will show her, all as they pass from canal to canal – to the “Grand Canal,” which can be taken as sexual metaphors or symbols for certain parts of a woman. Or sometimes a canal is just a canal!
In conclusion, the Venice – Canal Scene is a pleasant moment for the two of them, as they wrap up their mission, and their passion. And they are now in the safety zone! And Daniela Bianchi as Tania was just perfect casting – she is stunning! Tell us what you think!