Casino Royale

February 3, 2009 at 1:21 am | Posted in DVD Review, Film Review | Leave a comment
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Having watched the sequel, first, I managed to get hold of Casino Royale and finally see the introduction of Daniel Craig as James Bond.

Warning: plot elements revealed

January 31, 2009 by

Film Hanger

Paper Hanger Blog
New Zealand

I was disappointed, I felt the major tension builder – the card game was badly handled. The result was that the film was a like one of the old Bob-Hope-and-Bing-Crosby Road-film; only no humour – just action and thuggery. The action scenes were very well done – John Woo has had a big impact in terms of raising the bar in this area. The run up a crane-arm chase segment is so amazing that it is totally unbelievable – the athleticism and skill required reduces the action scenes to choreography for gymnasts. It was like watching the Cirque de Soleil!

The film introduces us to Bond and explains the way he is, but that is useful only if you have seen most of the other Bond films. Otherwise, there are these odd moments when the film seems to pause, before moving on for no reason – the Aston Martin, the Martini, the dinner jacket, and so on.

I read the book when I was younger, and this turned out to be a drawback. Vesper Lynd (played by Eva Green), in the book, works for M16. The concept of sending a Treasury official along to handle the money side of things is so contrived as to be implausible, and against printed reality that I momentarily dropped out of ‘sit back and enjoy’ mode.

Also, in the book, Le Chiffre (ably played by Mads Mikkelsen) plays baccarat – not Texas Holdem. The protracted poker game just did not build and hold tension. I felt the game was pretty much ignored and the audience was expected to take it all on trust.

The film is has a very fast pace, and feels like one long chase. There is no end as such, because the film is just part one, and transitions smoothly into part two – Quantum of Solace.

Daniel Craig play Bond very well; I never believed that spies lived the high life and occassional shot someone. Craig’s bond is gritty; he runs, gets wounds bigger than will be covered by a bandaid, gets dirty – much more believeable.



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