Having never seen a James Bond film in my life, “Casino Royale” was a first in my movie filmdom. The plot revolves around the iconic James Bond having to go to a high stakes poker game in Montenegro in order to foil the main villain Le Chiffre. Along the way he has the help of the beautiful Vesper Lynd played by Eva Green. Now, this is not a James Bond film in the vein of excessive gadgets, corny dialogue, and most importantly giving the Bond girl a ridiculously suggestive name. This is a fresh, fun ride that anybody who has never experienced Bond can get into.
Daniel Craig is for all intents and purposes, James Bond. While some fans had problems with this “Blond Bond” I thought he was amazing. He has all the charm and sexiness that to me, embodies Bond and I couldn’t stop focusing on him because he gets so into the part. Eva Green who plays the Bond girl is more than just a pretty face and a body. In the beginning she tries to resist Bond and you can see that she is an incredibly smart girl with a head on her shoulders. Le Chiffre played by Mads Mikkelsen is a great bad guy. He’s incredibly subtle yet cold and calculating at the same time. Judi Dench also returns to the Bond universe as M and plays a great straight man to Bond’s spontaneous persona.
The film itself has a lot of action. From the first scene shot in black and white, to the end the film is a non-stop adrenaline rush. The chase scene in the beginning goes on for about five minutes and does not get boring. You see Bond climb, jump, crash through walls it’s amazing. The story is also engaging and has many twists and turns without trying to be too confusing.
While the story itself is incredibly fast paced, it comes to a screeching halt with the poker scenes are being played. Now I know this is the focal point of the film but they go on for about ten minutes and believe me, it shows. Having no idea how to play poker it got incredibly confusing to me who was winning and why, that might be why one of the character explained to Eva Green what was going on. These scenes are incredibly boring and I usually took my bathroom breaks during them. Also, there are about three or four endings that they settle on. Just when you think the film is over, another scene shows up. I don’t want to spoil anything but they could have stuck with the last ending and wrapped the film up in my opinion.
In the end while the film has its faults I thoroughly enjoyed “Casino Royale,” if they keep Daniel Craig as James Bond I’ll probably go see the sequel coming out in 2008. Hopefully this time they cut down whatever game they’re playing to give the story a better flow.