Synopsis: The first in the modern re-boot of the James Bond series.
Description: The movie that introduces Daniel Craig as the sexy British spy, code named 007.
Review: The much anticipated re-boot of the hugely popular James Bond series Daniel Craig plays Bond on his first mission, in which he must stop a terrorist banker from winning a high stakes poker game. At first glance this doesn’t sound like your traditional Bond movie that normally sees 007 chasing ladies, wielding fancy weaponry and having an awful lot of close calls with an awful lot of rather awful but surprisingly inventive torture machines.
And in many ways this is not Bond as we have come to know him, yet strangely it is; since the production of the first Bond movie several decades ago his British accent and preferred drink have become a total cliché, spoofed and imitated more times than you can count, you would expect a successful re-boot to avoid these clichés at all costs.
But Casino Royale doesn’t, the movie makers made sure they covered all those bases, right down to the Martini, but somehow it carries it off with a class and straight forwardness that evokes no humour and deals swiftly with any of those who attempt it. This is thanks to several things, first of all the script, which is strong and minimalist; there is very little melodrama in the speeches or any use of flowery or over-used language. It is a tight and intelligent script that allows the story to progress at an impressive yet steady pace whilst also allowing the actors their opportunities to shine.
And Craig does shine, particularly in his emergence from the glistening blue sea; he is absolutely heart-stoppingly gorgeous. But our Danny isn’t just a pretty face, some viewers might recognize him from his appearance in the BBC’s Our Friends in the North in the mid 90’s and his rather impressive career since Casino Royale can attest that Craig was a brilliantly creative choice to play Bond. He is a strong and evocative actor who commands a great deal of screen presence without appearing over the top or obscene.
The movie makes a handful of nods to its predecessors and the first third of the movie seems like it’s desperately trying to prove Craig was the right choice to make, but despite the fact that thing’s take a little while to get in to; once the movie really finds its feet it is a really impressive piece of classy and classic cinema.