Casino Royale (2006) Reviews

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Lee Jones

Oh God! What can I say about CASINO ROYALE? It is probably one of the BEST James Bond movies I have ever seen. It’s not perfect. But then, I have yet to see the perfect Bond flick. But it is one of my favorites.

When I read all of those criticisms against Daniel Craig as Bond, I knew deep down that he would eventually have those critics eating row. The man was fabulous. But then, I knew he would be. After seeing him in movies like THE ROAD TO PERDITION, MUNICH and LAYERCAKE, I knew he would prove him wrong. Many are comparing him to Sean Connery. Bullshit! Craig does not need to be compared to Connery (who was excellent, by the way). He managed to create his own James Bond without having to mimic Connery. In reality, his Bond is closer to Dalton’s take on the British agent, but it is still unique. Like the other Bonds before him, Craig managed to instantly create his own style. Kudos to him.

Eva Green also impressed me very much. She was different from the usual Bond woman. Yes, she became a damsel in distress, but she was also a woman of mystery, who ended up saving Bond’s life twice without being physical about it. She was vulnerable, smart, witty and very complex. She and Craig created great chemistry together.

The odd thing about the novel, “Casino Royale”, is that it was NEVER one of my favorite novels by Fleming. The 1954 television version with Barry Nelson was a bit mediocre. The 1967 movie version with David Niven was a disaster – although Niven and the Burt Bacharach score were excellent. But I was amazed on how the screenwriters turned a medicore piece of crap novel like “Casino Royale” and turned it into one of the best Bond movies ever.

As for CASINO ROYALE’s theme song by Chris Cornell and David Arnold, “You Know My Name”, I think I’m getting used to it. I didn’t like it at first. But it’s growing on me. Arnold’s musical score, on the other hand, isn’t bad. There are moments when it reminded me of John Barry’s past work.

I hear that Bond 22 will be a story continuation of CASINO ROYALE – focusing upon the terrorist organization that Mr. White worked for. However, I think that Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli should seriously consider purchasing the rights to Bond novels written by John Gardner and Raymond Benson for future Bond movies for the next decade.

Tom Huffner

Click here to read my Casino Royale review.