Casino Royale, starring Daniel Craig, Eva Green, Judi Dench, form the spy novel written by Ian Fleming, M-G-M, 2006
I admit I was smitten by Ian Fleming’s James Bond epic Cold War spy notion back when we used to see such adventure film fare on the big screen at the local drive-in theater (for those who do know of that 1950s and early 1960s institution check Wikipedia) when we were more interested in some “hot” date more than in the movie. I think the first one in the Bond series was Doctor No with Sean Connery in the Bond role. There have been some twenty-odd Bond films since (and many copy-cat films) and a succession of Bond replacements. Frankly, despite the good performance here by Daniel Craig as Bond (and as almost always by Judi Dench in anything she does) this Bond notion I think has gotten stale. The virtue of Connery’s Bond was that while he was a wily and steadfast advocate of the “free world” he brought something of a slapstick air about the whole thing. This one, premised on fighting the “war on terrorism” by foiling a poker-loving “banker,” made me long for a cheeky Cold War spy night performance by Connery done with far less physical and technical whiz-bang action and more guile.