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Topic: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Hi everyone,

I was wondering something about FYEO.

We know Kristatos is hired by Gogol to recover A.T.A.C after the soviet general learns about the sinking of St. George in the Ionian Sea. Then Kristatos decides to kill Timothy Havelock and his wife to make sure they won't find out the location of the shipwreck before him and then recover the system to give it back to the british government.

If we think about it, isn't Gogol involved in this double murder and in the other murders in some way (Lisl, Ferrara) ? Locque is only Kristatos's henchman and the greek smuggler is himself working for Gogol, the "mastermind" of this project.
I suppose Gogol knows of Kristatos's activities. Then he must be aware of the danger the man represents, he should guess Kristatos will try to recover the object "by all means", including murdering people if necessary...
I don't believe Gogol is so foolish to think everything will be OK, with nobody getting killed and Kristatos using peacuful means to accomplish his task.

That's why I don't really understand the final scene in St. Cyril's Monastery. Gogol comes to buy A.T.A.C to Kristatos and given he's responsible for most of the events that happened in this affair, Bond shouldn't be so friendly with him. Considering neither England nor USSR should own the system to avoid a conflict is understandable but at this point, it's too late. The two nations should have found a diplomatic way to negociate just after the sinking, even if Détente was not easy to secure from the end of the 70s.
Furthermore, it's very surprising to see Melina smiling while the man in front of her has blood on his hands concerning the death of her parents. 

Does anyone see my point ?

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (16th Nov 2020 09:22)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

I see your point, but Bond kills people too. Both kill for their government. Gogol wanting the ATAC is no worse than Bond wanting the Lektor in FRWL and killing people to get it. Melina is relieved because the situation is over, and the man who is directly responsible for the killing of her parents is dead. Gogol is indirectly responsible, but he didn't make the choice to kill specific people.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

I understand your point, I just don’t necessarily agree...Gogol just wants the ATAC and he deniability as far as Kristatos and his actions are concerned...

YNWA 96

The Unbearables

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Matt S wrote:

I see your point, but Bond kills people too. Both kill for their government. Gogol wanting the ATAC is no worse than Bond wanting the Lektor in FRWL and killing people to get it. Melina is relieved because the situation is over, and the man who is directly responsible for the killing of her parents is dead. Gogol is indirectly responsible, but he didn't make the choice to kill specific people.


Yes, Bond is a killer. So is Scaramanga if you remember. The difference between them is that if Bond can avoid to do it uselessly, then he won’t (remember what M says in Sp: « a licence to kill is also a licence not to kill »)

What you say about FRWL is true but FYEO doesn't take place during the 50s or at the beginning of the 60s. The geopolitical context is not the same. KGB and MI6 have worked together since then (TSWLM).
In this movie, if USSR turn out to recover ATAC first, they can control british submarines and then take full advantage of the situation with blackmailing Her Majesty's government and even NATO !
If you think about it, Blofeld kinda did the same thing in TB with stealing the bombs, that's why I see Gogol as some kind of villain here, not as bad as Orlov in OP of course, but enough to be more or less involved in several murders - poor Lisl ajb007/frown
From the moment Gogol chose to contact Kristatos, it was over. If Bond had had him arrested (like he suggests it for Kristatos) and then had returned to London with ATAC, which still belongs to the british government, it wouldn't have shocked me at all...

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (16th Nov 2020 21:35)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

I'd agree that the situation with Gogol's villainy in For Your Eyes Only can be aptly compared to Thunderball.  Just as Emilio Largo can be thought of as merely a hired functionary carrying out Blofeld's plans, so Kristatos is little more than a glorified henchman working under Gogol's direction. The main difference in terms of plot mechanics, I would argue, is the notably higher quality of Thunderball's villains. Largo is a more colourful and memorable enemy than Kristatos, with his commanding presence, cool eyepatch, and tense confrontation scenes with 007 (meeting over cards, the shooting scene, and the final fight.). Blofeld is intimidating and iconic in that film as well. In contrast Kristatos is rather dull and has little meaty dramatic interaction with Bond, while having Gogol play the role of 'big bad' antagonist is simply confusing after his mostly comedic, non-threatening use in The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker. So i'd argue that the 'dual villains' gimmick works a lot better in Thunderball as compared to For Your Eyes Only.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

SpectreOfDefeat wrote:

I'd agree that the situation with Gogol's villainy in For Your Eyes Only can be aptly compared to Thunderball.  Just as Emilio Largo can be thought of as merely a hired functionary carrying out Blofeld's plans, so Kristatos is little more than a glorified henchman working under Gogol's direction. The main difference in terms of plot mechanics, I would argue, is the notably higher quality of Thunderball's villains. Largo is a more colourful and memorable enemy than Kristatos, with his commanding presence, cool eyepatch, and tense confrontation scenes with 007 (meeting over cards, the shooting scene, and the final fight.). Blofeld is intimidating and iconic in that film as well. In contrast Kristatos is rather dull and has little meaty dramatic interaction with Bond, while having Gogol play the role of 'big bad' antagonist is simply confusing after his mostly comedic, non-threatening use in The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker. So i'd argue that the 'dual villains' gimmick works a lot better in Thunderball as compared to For Your Eyes Only.

So you see my point. Blofeld/Gogol and Largo/Kristatos are in the same vein. We can even consider Derval/Havelock, although the link is less obvious. 

There's also a thing I don't get about Gogol in TSWLM. Is that him who ordered Sergei Barsov to kill Bond in the PTS ?

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (16th Nov 2020 20:18)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

SeanIsTheOnlyOne, I agree with your original point and analysis. The truth is that Gogol fulfils different functions from film to film in terms of narrative and drama - more interestingly in the John Glen films (the first couple of them, anyway) compared with the earlier, Lewis Gilbert movies. If Gogol and Bond seem to show friendly, mutual respect at the end of FYEO, that's more a hangover from their detente days of TSWLM - a different kind of Bond film - than strictly logical given Gogol's opportunistic instigation of FYEO's villainous and deadly machinations (even if at a remove).

Critics and material I don't need. I haven't changed my act in 49 years.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Shady Tree wrote:

SeanIsTheOnlyOne, I agree with your original point and analysis. The truth is that Gogol fulfils different functions from film to film in terms of narrative and drama - more interestingly in the John Glen films (the first couple of them, anyway) compared with the earlier, Lewis Gilbert movies. If Gogol and Bond seem to show friendly, mutual respect at the end of FYEO, that's more a hangover from their detente days of TSWLM - a different kind of Bond film - than strictly logical given Gogol's opportunistic instigation of FYEO's villainous and deadly machinations (even if at a remove).

That’s what I thought too after I watched the movie again yesterday. Gogol has always been showed as a sympathetic character in this particular context of the Cold War, which explains why he can’t be considered as a genuine villain like Blofeld for instance. He shows more often humanism than cruelty.

But in FYEO, his recklessness and the way he conducted this affair had tragic consequences. I think Havelock’s murder could have led to a very serious diplomatic incident...
That’s why I don’t really appreciate the final scene Bond/Gogol which should have been written differently, with less kindness from Bond: «Not this time Comrade. And by the way, this is ours».

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (16th Nov 2020 21:38)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

the observations about Gogol are all true, but I say they're a feature not a bug.
The revelation Gogol is the big baddy behind all the other baddies is one of the things I like about this movie.

First, remember this is the anti-formula Bond film, the more realistic back-to-earth response after the cartoonish excesses of the last couple of films. This is the mundane, random, even pointless Bond film with the episodic plot structure.

We may think of Gogol as a good guy, because he cooperated with MI6 when Bond first met him. But does that make Bond and Gogol friends? Because they happened to be on the same side when they first met? No, that was a unique situation, they're otherwise on opposite sides in this dirty damn business. They are professional rivals, frenemies. So its good to be reminded of their true relationship.

I like how upthread Matt has compared Gogol's pursuit of the ATAC to Bond's pursuit of the Lektor in From Russia with Love. Gogol may be responsible for a few more innocents' deaths than Bond was, but Bond is a killer too, and if you've read the books (particularly the Living Daylights) Bond is well aware he is not that different than his counterparts on the other side.

and I'd say Bond is not being too friendly to Gogol. He is disappointed to see who is the big baddy, and frustrated with the whole chain of events that have led to this point. But what's he going to do other than destroy the ATAC? Gogol is very high ranking Soviet officer, and what he's been doing is his job, not some scifi scheme to destroy the world.

Do we expect Bond to kill Gogol, as he does the big baddy at the end of every other film? Following the realism of the film, I think to do so would have diplomatic repercussions. I think Moore's attitude during this scene conveys a begrudging but deeply unhappy acknowledgement that this is how their job works, and as such is a more satisfying "conclusion" to this particular mission.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

caractacus potts wrote:

the observations about Gogol are all true, but I say they're a feature not a bug.
The revelation Gogol is the big baddy behind all the other baddies is one of the things I like about this movie.

First, remember this is the anti-formula Bond film, the more realistic back-to-earth response after the cartoonish excesses of the last couple of films. This is the mundane, random, even pointless Bond film with the episodic plot structure.

We may think of Gogol as a good guy, because he cooperated with MI6 when Bond first met him. But does that make Bond and Gogol friends? Because they happened to be on the same side when they first met? No, that was a unique situation, they're otherwise on opposite sides in this dirty damn business. They are professional rivals, frenemies. So its good to be reminded of their true relationship.

I like how upthread Matt has compared Gogol's pursuit of the ATAC to Bond's pursuit of the Lektor in From Russia with Love. Gogol may be responsible for a few more innocents' deaths than Bond was, but Bond is a killer too, and if you've read the books (particularly the Living Daylights) Bond is well aware he is not that different than his counterparts on the other side.

and I'd say Bond is not being too friendly to Gogol. He is disappointed to see who is the big baddy, and frustrated with the whole chain of events that have led to this point. But what's he going to do other than destroy the ATAC? Gogol is very high ranking Soviet officer, and what he's been doing is his job, not some scifi scheme to destroy the world.

Do we expect Bond to kill Gogol, as he does the big baddy at the end of every other film? Following the realism of the film, I think to do so would have diplomatic repercussions. I think Moore's attitude during this scene conveys a begrudging but deeply unhappy acknowledgement that this is how their job works, and as such is a more satisfying "conclusion" to this particular mission.

Very well said. Gogol always has his own interests in mind. They often coincide with Bond's interests, but here they don't happen to.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

caractacus potts wrote:

the observations about Gogol are all true, but I say they're a feature not a bug.
The revelation Gogol is the big baddy behind all the other baddies is one of the things I like about this movie.

First, remember this is the anti-formula Bond film, the more realistic back-to-earth response after the cartoonish excesses of the last couple of films. This is the mundane, random, even pointless Bond film with the episodic plot structure.

We may think of Gogol as a good guy, because he cooperated with MI6 when Bond first met him. But does that make Bond and Gogol friends? Because they happened to be on the same side when they first met? No, that was a unique situation, they're otherwise on opposite sides in this dirty damn business. They are professional rivals, frenemies. So its good to be reminded of their true relationship.

I like how upthread Matt has compared Gogol's pursuit of the ATAC to Bond's pursuit of the Lektor in From Russia with Love. Gogol may be responsible for a few more innocents' deaths than Bond was, but Bond is a killer too, and if you've read the books (particularly the Living Daylights) Bond is well aware he is not that different than his counterparts on the other side.

and I'd say Bond is not being too friendly to Gogol. He is disappointed to see who is the big baddy, and frustrated with the whole chain of events that have led to this point. But what's he going to do other than destroy the ATAC? Gogol is very high ranking Soviet officer, and what he's been doing is his job, not some scifi scheme to destroy the world.

Do we expect Bond to kill Gogol, as he does the big baddy at the end of every other film? Following the realism of the film, I think to do so would have diplomatic repercussions. I think Moore's attitude during this scene conveys a begrudging but deeply unhappy acknowledgement that this is how their job works, and as such is a more satisfying "conclusion" to this particular mission.


I would have expected another kind of behaviour towards Gogol. If you use the expression "diplomatic repercussions" about the russian general being "punished" - killed is excessive indeed but at least accountable - then what should we think of the treacherous deaths of Timothy Havelock and his wife on their own boat ?

This double murder is one of the keys of the story, and it led to other useless killings. Gogol knew the British government would attempt to locate the wreck and he should have given instructions to his local contact to make sure this operation would not lead to a new conflict. Remember YOLT with the geopolitical rivalry where each side was trying to dominate the other but with no initial wish of military escalation.

About FRWL, I already answered. Times have changed and the comparison with a 1963 movie - directly based upon a 1957 novel - seems a little bit risky, although I have to admit Gogol’s motive is not so far from Bond’s one. But the points of departure of the two cases are not exactly the same if you think about it. Ignoring SPECTRE (SMERSH in the novel) is behind this, it’s because Tatiana has requested Bond’s help that he gets involved and mainly because she suggests giving the Lektor in return, while Gogol didn’t really play by the rules with contacting a man like Kristatos.

It's funny to see that in OP, Gogol is much more reasonable. I know it was to show the antagonism with Orlov but he seems quite aware of the danger Orlov represents, while in FYEO, he doesn't appear concerned about the potential counterattack of the West if some bad people within USSR turned out to take contol of ATAC...

Nevermind, everything you said is quite relevant and I can’t deny it. That's just my personal appreciation. Anyone can see it the way he intends to and not sharing what Maibaum and Wilson (that I love both - TLD is a masterpiece to me) wrote for this scene.

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (17th Nov 2020 16:40)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

actually I have no idea what the real-world repercussions would be if Bond killed Gogol, or what would be an otherwise appropriate diplomatic response to Gogol's actions.

Folks mentioned Blofeld up above, as a contrast, he being the archetypical big baddy behind all the other baddies.
Blofeld himself is in this film!!, and made to look very silly in the precredits, as the film symbolically dumps all that comic book stuff and prepares us for the more realistic chain of events that shall follow.
The tone is so different, the precredits seem like an excerpt from a different film, but may be intended to contrast with the final reveal of Gogol.

What if Kristatos's employer had turned out to be a new character, a typical scenery chewing Bond villain? I think then we would have expected the more typical conclusion where Bond simply kills the big baddy and the world is saved. The revelation the "big baddy" is someone the audience already knows, and thought they could trust, is what gives the actual ending its significance.

And the chain of events initiated by Gogol does result in real world tragedy. That's part of the point of the film, the human scale. The killing of the Havelocks is one of the more disturbing actions in all the films, followed up by the pointless deaths of Lisl and Ferrara. Quite a contrast to the other recent films, where battles between good and evil rolled through packed tourist sites without a single injury to the public.
This dirty damn business Bond is employed in does have real world consequences for the little people, and much of this film is Bond entering the lives of the little people who are being effected.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

SeanIsTheOnlyOne wrote:

It's funny to see that in OP, Gogol is much more reasonable. I know it was to show the antagonism with Orlov but he seems quite aware of the danger Orlov represents, while in FYEO, he doesn't appear concerned about the potential counterattack of the West if some bad people within USSR turned out to take contol of ATAC...

This is a good point.
In the very next film, Gogol himself takes action against the rogue Russian general who has caused all the trouble.
I think the scale of Orlov's crimes (including the intended bombing of Berlin) is much greater. So that's simple, he is closer to the conventional Bond villain out to destroy the world.

But as you say, the murder of two innocent people (the Havelocks) deserves justice too, and I think part of the point of FYEO is we are focusing on that matter of justice, and for once in the series we see just how messy that is, including Bond's own possible complicity.

Morality aside, Orlov is a rogue, and his own side takes responsibility to deal with him. Gogol is doing his job, even if that too may  ultimately result in a similar threat to world peace.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

You got me thinking way too much about this film this morning!
it is one of the more thought provoking BondFilms...


The question of justice can also be contrasted to Fleming's own short story.
In the short story, M himself assigns Bond to avenge the Havelock's deaths, but off the books, because they were his close personal friends. He could not do this officially, he is basically misappropriating office supplies when he uses his employee in this way. So justice done is in defiance of the actual law!
And of course when Bond tries to do this unofficial job for his boss, the victims' daughter has got there first. Unlike Bond, vengeance is directly personal for her.

Whereas in the film M is entirely absent (Bernard Lee had passed away) and the mission (not to avenge the murders, but to recover the ATAC) is assigned by the Cabinet Minister and the chief-of-staff. Cabinet Minister is even more official than head of MI6! This mission is very much on the books.
And when Melina kills her parents' assassin, achieving that justice which was the climax of Fleming's story, Bond is reprimanded by his bosses for allowing that to happen and missing the chance to question the suspect and obtain real information!
Almost the opposite to the point of Fleming's story...


The close personal relationship between M and a murder victim (and a vengeful daughter) would appear as a plot point in a much later film, and thats a thought provoking entry in the series too.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Best thread for a while! Thanks guys, hope there's more.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

caractacus potts wrote:

You got me thinking way too much about this film this morning!
it is one of the more thought provoking BondFilms...

GOTCHA ! Now you understand why I think this movie is the best of the RM era.

What you say about Blofeld in the PTS is very interesting. Perhaps showing him was a way to "tease" the rest of the movie and to underline although USSR have common points with SPECTRE, Gogol is much more ambiguous than Blofeld, especially because of what we know of him from the previous movies.

In FYEO, we're far from the "sympathetic soviet" of TSWLM and MR. In some way, it is the same for Roger's Bond and the moment that illustrates it the best is obviously the death of Locque. We can see the relationship between Bond and Gogol as a metaphore of the movie, a typical Cold War spy case with traitors, complex characters and danger everywhere, which could explain the conclusion. Nevertheless, Gogol remains accountable for those murders regarding the law and I still would have written this scene differently.

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (17th Nov 2020 18:42)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Barbel wrote:

Best thread for a while! Thanks guys, hope there's more.

Thx ! I also created a topic about LALD. If you have any opinion about it, I'd enjoy to read it  ajb007/smile

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

I think that the situation at the end of the film as written makes sense. Bond has no way to kill Gogol. Gogol's men almost kill Bond, but Gogol spares Bond's life. Everyone knows that Gogol was ultimately responsible for all the chaos, but he's bigger than everyone there. He lets things be, and everyone involved is thankful for that. Melina already got her revenge against those who were more directly responsible for her parents' deaths, and she's not ready to take on a world superpower. Bond understands that Gogol let him go, so he lets Gogol go. Taking down Gogol means taken down the Soviet Union, and that's not Bond's goal. Bond just wants to maintain the balance of power.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

Matt S wrote:

I think that the situation at the end of the film as written makes sense. Bond has no way to kill Gogol. Gogol's men almost kill Bond, but Gogol spares Bond's life. Everyone knows that Gogol was ultimately responsible for all the chaos, but he's bigger than everyone there. He lets things be, and everyone involved is thankful for that. Melina already got her revenge against those who were more directly responsible for her parents' deaths, and she's not ready to take on a world superpower. Bond understands that Gogol let him go, so he lets Gogol go. Taking down Gogol means taken down the Soviet Union, and that's not Bond's goal. Bond just wants to maintain the balance of power.

That’s why I said that killing Gogol was excessive but given he’s responsible for all this, the movie could have taken it into account when Bond and him finally met.

I know what you’re gonna say. Destroying ATAC was some kind of peaceful way to solve that case and to avoid a military conflict. Bond did the right thing indeed. But I still can’t stop thinking about Havelock’s awful murder. When you decide to contact a guy like Kristatos, knowing of his reputation and his activities, you take such a risk that the conclusion deserves something more/else than some kind of friendly handshake. I didn’t say this scene was irrelevant. I simply refer to a very common process consisting in identifying with the different characters given what I have seen so far. This is the definition of the concept of subjectivity which implies MY reading is not supposed to be the same as yours or anyone else’s. For instance, I would have kept the part where Bond destroys ATAC (for the reasons I explained before) but with a less friendly atmosphere. Nevermind, I guess it fits well with Roger’s Bond. Perhaps this scene would have been a little bit different with Connery or Dalton. Do you understand what I mean ?

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (17th Nov 2020 18:58)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

I'm enjoying reading this topic.

FWIW, as I see it - and I'd not suggest my opinion is definitive - Gogol employs Kristatos immediately the ATAC is lost. Kristatos is the KGB man in the region. However, Kristatos has his own businesses - Colombo outlines them quite clearly as often being illegal - and while he may be a KGB man  he isn't their employee. Remember, Gogol knows the Russian military will benefit from the ATAC. Obtaining it is the primary objective. He can't be seen sending Russian teams directly on a recovery mission  so he uses a proxy. At this point the methods of recovery do not concern him. Gogol isn't responsible for the Havelock's killing; that is Kristatos via Locque via Gonzales. Gogol isn't party to Kristatos methods and it is never suggested he is. The assumption he might however well argued isn't based on any filmic evidence as far as I recall. When we have the "detente" line from Bond & when Gogol stops his bodyguard from killing Bond, this is his signal of agreement that enemy action has ceased. I believe it works perfectly well.

I do like the previous post on the PTS. I'd never considered its silliness as a counterpoint to the seriousness of the following action.

Also agree Glen's directional efforts had a more noticeable Cold War thread. It's one of the reasons I enjoy FYEO (& TLD) as they feel much more grounded than most 007 adventures.

Sorry  went on a bit...

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

chrisno1 wrote:

I'm enjoying reading this topic.

FWIW, as I see it - and I'd not suggest my opinion is definitive - Gogol employs Kristatos immediately the ATAC is lost. Kristatos is the KGB man in the region. However, Kristatos has his own businesses - Colombo outlines them quite clearly as often being illegal - and while he may be a KGB man  he isn't their employee. Remember, Gogol knows the Russian military will benefit from the ATAC. Obtaining it is the primary objective. He can't be seen sending Russian teams directly on a recovery mission  so he uses a proxy. At this point the methods of recovery do not concern him. Gogol isn't responsible for the Havelock's killing; that is Kristatos via Locque via Gonzales. Gogol isn't party to Kristatos methods and it is never suggested he is. The assumption he might however well argued isn't based on any filmic evidence as far as I recall. When we have the "detente" line from Bond & when Gogol stops his bodyguard from killing Bond, this is his signal of agreement that enemy action has ceased. I believe it works perfectly well.

I do like the previous post on the PTS. I'd never considered its silliness as a counterpoint to the seriousness of the following action.

Also agree Glen's directional efforts had a more noticeable Cold War thread. It's one of the reasons I enjoy FYEO (& TLD) as they feel much more grounded than most 007 adventures.

Sorry  went on a bit...

This topic is quite interesting indeed, mostly because there are several points of view.

The debate deals more with Gogol’s involvement than the scene itself. You’re right when you say Gogol can’t send his own team, and I think the main reason is simple: this case is some kind of time trial and he needs a local contact to make sure the rival won’t recover ATAC before, so do the British with contacting Havelock. So far, we could use the motto « may the best win » that can be considered as the policy of Détente.
The main problem concerns the way you achieve your goal. In other words: are you ready to carry the moral responsibility of having innocent people murdered just to accomplish your task or not ? If you think about it, Derval was killed only because he was the pilot of the Vulcan and SPECTRE needed someone to take his place on board, otherwise Blofeld’s plot would have failed.
Well, Havelock was killed because he was about to locate the wreck, and Kristatos murdered him, otherwise Gogol’s plot would have failed. Does it imply Gogol and Blofeld are the same ? Not exactly because Gogol didn’t properly ask Kristatos to murder every person who could prevent him from achieving his goal but in some way, FYEO is disturbing on that point.

The « by all means » concept is a philosophical issue dealing with ethics, which explains why most of you guys enjoy this topic, so do I.

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (18th Nov 2020 11:57)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

@chrisno1, one of your points made me sleep on it ! The absence of any filmic evidence of Gogol's knowledge of Kristatos's current activities can't be denied. You’re right, Kristatos is a former KGB agent located in Greece, which explains why Gogol decided to contact him.

But I guess (not to say I hope) the chief of the Soviet Secret Intelligence must own some files containing pieces of information about what a former operative officially still alive has become, otherwise contacting him would be a tremendous risk. The only way to avoid it is to make sure the guy can be trusted with checking his current activities (after all, he could be a mole working for the rival).
That's why I’m pretty sure Gogol did know who Kristatos actually was from the beginning. Then he knew the man could be trusted, and the rest didn’t matter.

Nevertheless, let’s play and suppose Gogol wasn’t aware of Kritatos’s dangerousness…
Well, even if it was true, it just seems impossible Gogol did not learn about what happened to Havelock and his wife, and nobody needs any filmic evidence to understand that.
Eventually, Gogol's retrospective knowledge of the double murder (not to include Ferrara and Lisl) didn’t prevent him from deciding to go to St. Cyril’s Monastery to pay Kristatos and then bring ATAC back to Moscow. Bond's presence was not something he had forseen considering his original aim.

In any case, the ethics issue remains.

Last edited by SeanIsTheOnlyOne (18th Nov 2020 14:08)

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

SeanIsTheOnlyOne,
as you say, there is an ethical debate, but pushing the envelope a little... ethics from when? 2020 or 1981? I just don't think Gogol is over-bothered how the Russians obtain ATAC. I get the impression had Kristatos handed it to him at Metaora, he would have swept away in the helicopter and left his 'contact' to die anyway. ( No filmic evidence for that either ). Gogol seems to rather like James Bond. Seeing 007 again perhaps made him wonder if the effort was really worth it.
ajb007/smile

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

According to his wikipedia entry, General Gogol is head of the KGB.
Do we really expect the head of the KGB to worry about such details?

As for east-west relations in 1981, there was actually a reheating of the Cold War, following Reagans election, Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and accelerated nuclear buildup (to be a topic in the next film).

It's this idea that Bond and the head of the KGB are friendly at all that is fantasy world stuff, a holdover from the escapist The Spy Who Loved Me.
But in this more realistic film, his return as a recognisable character gives that final scene more meaning, and makes the point that in this game both sides play, a lot of innocent lives were just wasted by the pursuit of some mcguffin that ultimately wasn't that important to the other side.

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Re: Gogol's involvement in FYEO

SeanIsTheOnlyOne
I cant tell if you've actually spelled it out above, but
how would you have rewritten that final scene?

Is your issue just about ethics or do you also want a more conventional closure to an adventure film?
To me, the frustrating "non-ending" is just what this film requires.
Its almost like the Seinfeld episode of James Bond movies, a spy story about Nothing.