Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Memory lane

Some friends were in town this past week on their way to a holiday in Central Europe, their first time. They'll be in Prague and Budapest and Vienna. And Bratislava! I recommended a few things to do in various cities, but then I recalled that they are great James Bond fans and said that they must, of course, go on the Riesenrad in the Prater in Vienna - hadn't their hero been on it? (My reason would be "The Third Man.") Indeed he had, and they couldn't remember much about "The Living Daylights," the 1987 Bond film in question, so I invited them over for dinner and a screening (thanks to Netflix streaming and my projector). 
Who remembered that Bratislava - improbably located over a mountain pass - was even more important to the story than Vienna? It's in Bratislava (actually in a dressed down Vienna Volksoper) that Bond meets his Girl, a cellist. And it's in sledding downhill in the case of that cello (a Stradivarius bought by the arms dealer who is the film's main villain) that they narrowly escape scores of pursuing Soviet soldiers. I'm glad to have seen it for the vintage Bond location switches, but also because I'd forgotten about the piece she played on that cello, Borodin's second string quartet, one of the first things I ever had on cassette.

No comments: