Sunday, December 03, 2006

Casino Royale (2006)

Is about as close as the franchise has yet come to the ruthless amoral 007 Ian Fleming described in his original James Bond novels.
Trust me, this is not Roger Moore and his submautomobile.
Daniel Craig is not quite as classically handsome as his predecessors but he has a lean hawk-like visage and the best squinty "I-mean-it" look since the salad days of Sean Connery's icy scowl.
Sadly the film had to excise the original cold war context, but much of the book's plotline is maintained including a brutal torture sequence that has to be seen to be believed.
So yeah, Craig will do well in the role, my only question is are they now gonna dial back and start remaking some of the old titles? I can easily see Craig headlining "The Man with the Golden Gun" or even another go at "Moonraker".
I read somewheres, that Casino Royale's plotline (Bankrupting a spymaster at the baccarat tables) was based on a real incident in Ian Fleming's stint as the wartime chief of staff in British Intelligence. Apaprently, they discovered that certain Gestapo agents like to gamble in Monte Carlo with the Third Reich's funds, Fleming proposed sending in a sharper to fleece them at the gaming tables and thus disrupt the Nazi spy apparatus in the south of France.
The plan was never approved, but it makes for a good spy novel and equally good movie.