Tatiana and Klebb (Head of Operations for SMERSH) Have A Meeting

Here we see the behind the scenes plan for getting the Lektor. Tatiana Romanov works for Russia, and she thinks Rosa Klebb is still head of operations for the Russians (SMERSH). This set is in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.  And you can still find this very building (an inn) that was used to shoot this scene.

Again, a great set, nice lighting, a believable meeting. The set details make the movie most believable, and the locations feel very real. This scene sets up the rest of the movie, with two characters here who will appear at the very end of the movie as well.

Tatiana Approaches the Building to Meet Klebb

The atmosphere really oozes out at this moment.  Tatiana is approaching the door she must enter to meet Klebb.  Tatiana is not in control, and the cat walking past her ads to the intrigue and dark atmosphere.  So does the creaking door, and we see that Red Grant (the one who killed “Bond” in the pre-title sequence) watches her enter.

Colonel Klebb, with a threatening crop/whip in hand, demonstrates that she is in complete control.  She reinforces that with, after Tatiana says about making love to Bond, ”And if I refuse?” Klebb sternly rebukes, “Then you will not leave this room alive.”  Klebb played brilliantly by Lotte Lenya, is a vision of evil.  She oozes evil.

Note, when Klebb places her hand on Tatiana’s knee to wrestle complete control of the situation, Tatiana is very uncomfortable and shifts her legs.  There are theories that Klebb had lesbian tendencies.  This playful and unnecessary touch of the knee fuels the theories as well as her looking at Red Grant at the training camp strictly as a tool to accomplish her mission and nothing else.

We think this scene might have been filmed in Istanbul as well, and we are investigating. The exterior of the building it is said was Istanbul.

Klebb’s Final Assault

Klebb’s Final Assault –  Just when you think it’s safe…Kleb shows up once again, in Venice, as Bond and Tania are ready to depart.

Rosa  Klebb draws a pistol on Bond and directs Tania to open the door.  Twice Tania reassures Bond that she knows nothing about Klebb being there, by shaking her head left and right while looking directly at Bond – twice – to show Bond her loyalty is to him.  Look for this subtle gesture in the clip.  We all feel relief that Tania is on the “good” side.

In real life, there are spy defections and good guys going to the bad side, or bad guys going to the good side – depending on your perspective.    As Mathis says in Quantum of Solace, in Talamone, Italy:  “When one is young, it is very easy to distinguish between right and wrong, but as one gets older, it becomes more difficult.  The villains and the heroes get all mixed up.”  That sums up the spy business.

Klebb then, for some reason, takes Bond’s pistol out of his shoulder holster and throws it on the floor.   Why not just shoot him right then and there?   She took a chance that Bond may overcome her as she reaches for his pistol.  And why take the pistol if you are just going to shoot him anyway?  But she does.

But at least she was going to shoot Bond and not have some elaborate scheme for him to die.  Then she backs to the door, and is about to shoot him – and Bond is pretty calm.  Of course, Tania to the rescue.

The thing to note here is that Klebb now has the poison shoe blade device that killed # 5 in SPECTRE # 1’s office. Here, she is willing to use it to kill Bond and retrieve the Lektor.  She knows the price of failure.  Here in the film, Bond escapes the poison blade, and Tania – who Kleb still thinks is on her side, foils Klebb’s plans to kill Bond. Here in the film, Bond escapes without injury.  However, in the novel by Ian Fleming, Bond is punctured by the poison blade/needle, and his fate is unknown.

In the film, as below, Klebb’s attempts to kill Bond with a pistol and with the poison shoe blade are foiled by Tania as she shoots Klebb, and Klebb, evil incarnate.  Klebb’s final assault is her final assault – and she is finally dead.

As in many Bond films, you never know when it’s over – but now, the danger is over at least!


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