News / Arts & Entertainment

To Russia With Love: Muscovites Flock to James Bond Show

'To Russia With Love:' Muscovites Flock to James Bond Showi
X
James Brooke
June 26, 2014 4:39 PM
During the Soviet era, watching a James Bond film in Russia could lead to a jail sentence. Despite the ban, many were able to catch bootleg copies during the thawing of the Cold War in the 1980s. This developed into a Russian love affair with the foreign agent. James Brooke reports from Moscow.
'To Russia With Love:' Muscovites Flock to James Bond Show
James Brooke

During the Soviet era, watching a James Bond film could lead to a jail sentence.  Despite the ban, many were able to catch bootleg copies during the thawing of the Cold War in the 1980s.  This developed into a Russian love affair with the foreign agent.

In 1964, when the James Bond movie From Russia With Love was packing theaters in the United States, Moscow and the West were locked in the deep freeze of the Cold War.

Fast forward half a century. Relations between Moscow and West are again in a deep chill - this time over Russia’s arming of rebels in Ukraine.
 
But disregarding geopolitics, Muscovites are streaming to a new museum show here called “Designing 007.”
 
Five floors and 500 props, sets, gadgets and costumes draw crowds to the Multimedia Arts Museum.

“Really huge, a lot of visitors, around 15,000 in three, in four days,” said Katrina Inozemtseva, the curator of the Bond show in Moscow.

She says we are far from the 1980s when Soviets secretly watched Bond movies on smuggled video cassettes.

“In one of the most popular [Russian] social networks - the VKontakte - the group of Bond fans - is more than 20,000 people,” she said.

For Soviets, James Bond offered an exciting window on the forbidden West.

“My childhood, beginning from the ‘70s and ‘80s, in the Soviet period, we were fond of James Bond. For us, it is just like a surprise from heaven. Every new film from James Bond, we watch on TV tape, video tape,” said Danila Matsokin, who came to the Bond show with his wife and 6-year-old son.

Gaiane Danilian says Bond movies radically changed her world view when she was a teenager growing up in Moscow in the 1980s.

“The idea of beauty of adventures, and freedom that was motivating Russians to watch that movie, and style. For Soviet people, unfortunately, they were not able to be part of that. So, in a movie, they thought they brought a dream into their life,” she recalled.

Now a grandmother in New York City, Danilian says James Bond contributed to her decision in 1992 to emigrate to the United States.

“Women are so beautiful in this country and they were always looking forward to being part of nice environment. With the movies, James Bond especially, they brought their fantasies, as they are part of this beautiful, untouchable world. They brought all these dreams - true,” she said.

Daniel Kovtun, a 21-year-old Moscow economics student, came to the show with his girlfriend. He says the James Bond sex appeal lives on.

“He is very rich. He is very cool. For the girls, he is a real man.  He has weapons, cars, lots of money. He has a lot of adventures. So this makes him very interesting,” he said.

In Moscow, it is clear from the young Kovtun and the elder Danilian that James Bond fantasies cut across borders and generations.

Cold War or no, it is clear that the James Bond fantasy remains strong, for Russians, and for Americans.

 

You May Like

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

Russia’s Prosecutor General to Review Legality of Baltics Independence

Move, announced Tuesday, has alarmed Baltic States and strained even further their increasingly tense ties with Moscow More

US Urged to Keep Up Pressure on Cuba Rights

Communist government continues to hold dozens of political prisoners, tightly restricts freedom of expression, uses threats, intimidation to discourage critics, according to activist groups More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: John from: Canada
June 26, 2014 9:11 PM
Thanks to VOA/Brooke for the heads-up about this show!

Obvious that many Russians enjoy deriding the American failure in Moscow of captured-deported CIA wig-wearer Ryan Fogle, and the earlier British "phony rock" episode.

However, even while Russians may take pride in their sexy Anna Chapman, she is hardly a success at anything except her self-promotion, but when Chapman does promote herself, it seems to be following a generational channel back to James Bond.

Link to the Russian language Multimedia Art Museum site "007 Design: 50 Years of James Bond Style", with photo captions in English: http://www.mamm-mdf.ru/exhibitions/bond/

What is ironic on the MAM site is to see (scroll down to the bottom) the sponsors include a host of British organizations (ie, British Council, etc), together with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs - but NOT including the British Embassy Moscow nor Foreign Office.

Hmmm...maybe the British Embassy just doesn't do sponsoring of such exhibits?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Interneti
X
Mike O'Sullivan
June 30, 2015 8:20 PM
Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry Wayne Casey – “KC” of KC and the Sunshine Band – comes to VOA’s Studio 4 to talk with "Border Crossings" host Larry London and perform songs from his new album, “Feeling You! The 60s.”