Monday, November 27, 2006

Casino Royale - The Verdict!

(Danjaq LLC,United Artists,Columbia Pictures)
Very, very good!
A lot of people who haven't seen the film know this, so I am not throwing any spoilers by saying that some radical changes to the structure of the Bond movies. No opening gunbarrel (although you see why before long), no Q (although he never featured in Live and Let Die) or Moneypenny. The whole franchise given a reboot so that you see Bond starting out as a Double 0, as opposed to being the hardened veteran as portrayed by all the previous Bonds! It was very brave of the Producers to do this and it could have damaged a film franchise going back two generations, and yet it works! I liked Pierce Brosnan but I could not see him as Bond in this! And yet Daniel Craig manages to put a stamp on his place as Bond in just one film where it took Connery and Moore three, Brosnan two, and Lazenby and Dalton never quite pushing their claim even though they are both good in their own way! Daniel Craig IS James Bond in this! He manages to capture all of Bond's facets of character as portrayed in the Fleming novels (and that takes some doing) managing to capture the original blueprint in a way that none of the others managed, even though some got very close!
The plot has a no of twists and is superb. No meglomaniac villain wanting world domination, although the villains here are a menace who must be stopped and, it is suggested in this, helped finance 9/11! My one quibble is that it is very violent in parts, although those scenes have been shown in clips already. Put it this way, blokes wouldn't want to stand next to Daniel Craig in a urinal, nor would they want to sit on a wicker chair in the immediate future, and you can forget about trying to get immunity at a foreign embassy!
The girls! Well Eva Green as Vesper Lynd is one of the best characters written. Some Bond girls give as good as they get (Tracy in On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Melina in For Your Eyes Only, Jinx in Die Another Day, Octopussy in er, Octopussy), and Vesper definetly stands among them.
If you are a Bond fan, go and watch it, you won't be disapointed. If you are not, still go and watch it because this is one with a difference.
Oh and one more thing! Some fans know that Co-Producer and Cubby Broccoli's stepson, Michael Wilson, has had a Hitchcock like Cameo in every Bond film from Moonraker onwards (bar A View to a Kill), this one, where he plays the "Chief of Police" is one to bring a smile to your face. Another cameo is that of Richard Branson at Miami Airport, although blink and you will miss him!
One of the very best ones, definetly!


Icedink said...

Branson quite loathsome. I wish I had blinked. Thought the end was a bit strange but enjoyed it.

Paul Burgin said...

It was a slightly surreal shot of him, and the end was strange, but the audience at the cinema S and I were in did like the last line in the film! ;)