Hello, fellow moviegoers!
I’m not a very big fan of James Bond. I admit the character and series are very interesting, but they're not something I’ve ever really gotten into. I do enjoy the films, but believe they're a little overrated. That is just in my opinion. The franchise has produced some very good films. One of which is 2006’s Casino Royale. With the 24th installment, Spectre, hitting theaters this Friday, I decided it was a perfect time to review some James Bond.
Casino Royale is the 21st film in the Bond franchise. It was Daniel Craig’s first film as the British Agent 007. It is the story of newly promoted agent James Bond, as he is appointed to take down weapons dealer Le Chiffre played by Mads Mikkelsen. However, he is not taking him on in a physical fight, or even in a battle of espionage. He must defeat him in a high-stakes game of Poker.
I never thought that watching people sit around a table playing with cards could be so riveting. Casino Royale features all the fast-action car chases, and undercover activities that you can come to expect from any Bond film, but features some intense card scenes in between them.
Daniel Craig’s performance as James Bond is definitely one that will be considered in the top tier. For his first go at the character, he really found his stride. A stride that he would nearly perfect in the films that followed. I really enjoyed the way this 007 acts. It seemed as if he had no time for anyone to get in his way, and if somebody did he would either plow them over or suavely embarrass them.
The villain played by Mads Mikkelsen looks intimidating, but he was a little hit-and-miss for me. One scene I would feel like this is a guy everyone should fear, and then the next he would be getting pushed around like a ragdoll by people he owes money. I don’t know if they were trying to make him into just the “middle-man” between Bond and a larger villain, but if they were they failed.
The movie also did feel like it dragged on a little too long. It seemed like there was a nearly perfect spot to end it, but they decided to add more conflict and extend the movie by almost half-an-hour to forty-five minutes.
The strength of this film definitely lies in the screenplay and direction. The script of the movie is impressive as is. It has great dialogue, great twists, and a great story, but the direction by Martin Campbell was the thing that pulled it all together to make a great movie. The Poker scenes were definitely the standout parts of the movie, but the action was just as heavy-hitting as everything else. You could feel the landing of each punch. There were several times where I was wincing in pain for these fictional characters on the screen.
Overall, I really enjoyed Casino Royale. It definitely has flaws, but they aren’t too terrible. If you enjoy fun spy movies, then this is one that should definitely be on your checklist.
So what do you think of Casino Royale? Who is your favorite James Bond? Let me know by commenting on this post! If you enjoyed my review, please share it on Facebook or Twitter. It really helps. Don't forget, I post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so check back for new movie reviews and editorials!
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