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Casino Royale
Review written on: November 18th, 2006

Casino Royale Review

It’s no secret, that after seeing L4yer Cake, I thought Daniel Craig was the man. Apparently, the internet did not agree. When rumors of Craig landing the leading role in Casino Royale starting floating around the internet, the die hard Bond fans started freaking out, with a zillion different reasons. “He’s too young”, “He’s no good”, etc, etc, blah, blah, blah.

For all those morons who thought that way, go see the movie. Now that it’s in theaters, go see this “Not good enough” man play Bond. He’s excellent.

I’ve never been a gigantic Bond fan. I can remember watching Licence To Kill when I was younger, and more recently Die Another Day on the flight back from London a few months ago. While I am a firm believer that each actor to play Bond is great in his own right, I definitely think that Daniel Craig should not be taking any more flack for his performance as Bond. Judging not only by the movie itself, but by box office sales thus far on opening weekend, the movie is a definite success. Knowing the previous Bond films, if they make another one, Craig will be their choice to play Bond again.

I was worried that a two and a half hour movie could run out of things to excite me with. I couldn’t have been more wrong. There’s enough lengthy action scenes in this movie to make Sylvester Stallone roll over in his grave. What? He’s not dead? The hell, I say. Scene after scene, you’re slapped in the face with more and more action. However, I think the most ass-kicking action scene is right near the beginning of the movie. The whole chase through the construction zone scene. (If you already saw the movie, you know what I’m talking about.) The stunts are fantastic.

Okay, so let’s address the “no gadgets” complaints that everyone on the internet is making. Yes, there is a drastic lack of gadgets in this Bond movie. But honestly, who cares? This is supposedly the “first” story of Bond, as a double-oh. MI6 (the agency he works for) wasn’t that advanced back when he started. There was no Q to make fancy gadgets to explode things with, or grapple down the side of a building. Bond had to do it all on his own, and did he ever.

The story was a fairly straight forward good guy versus bad guy versus other bad guy tale. There’s some blackmailing, some twists, some gun fights, some great fist fights, a few betrayals, and martinis (and no, he doesn’t give a damn if it’s shaken, and not stirred). I didn’t feel confused by the “trying too hard” bit that Hollywood often tries to spoon feed us. However, if you don’t understand Texas hold’em, you might get a bit confused during the poker scenes, with the different hands, and how do you know if someone won or not. But they do a fair enough job of explaining it to you, as they go along.

The Bond girl, Eva Green, was excellent too. Beautiful, charming, smart. She played her role perfectly, in every aspect. Bond himself, Daniel Craig, I can see why the cast him. Think about it? Bond is handsome, British, smart, and well spoken. Those four adjectives perfectly describe Craig himself. The choice should have been obvious from the get-go.

If you liked any of the previous Bond movies, you’ll definitely appreciate this film. Even if you didn’t see any of the other Bond movies, but just like action movies (The Italian Job, L4yer Cake, Heat, etc), you’ll love this movie. It delivers action, a bit of comedy (there’s a great joke about touching balls in there), and romance. What more could you ask for, from a film? I’m guessing this will be the first movie in 3 weeks to knock Borat out of the top spot at the box office.

Bond rules. I’m going out now to buy the box set of all the other Bond movies, and plan on watching each and every one of them.

 

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