Food, drink, film and other random thoughts from The Lone Star State.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Dark, Reckless Ambition

As soon as he emerges from the ocean, dripping and cocky, you can see his superior acting skills. And even if you dont see them, you better get used to seeing him bare-chested and coming out of many oceans in the future. Daniel Craig is James Bond and after seeing him in his 007 debut this morning, I'm certain he's here to stay.

Casino Royale has a very turbulent history. You can browse any of the movie databases or 007 sites to explore the drama surrounding this movie, which started in the 60's. Its amazing that now, 40 years later, it is showing up on the screen as Flemming had intended. Like many hero sequels and series have done recently, Casino Royale is a prequel, Bond before being admitted into the Licensed To Kill arena.

Its a formula right? Villan, girl, techno-wiz, capture, escape, girl? Wrong. Of course those elements are there but those used to the famliar tempo will be left feeling a little out of equilibrium. For those used to smooth talking, grace under pressure Bond, well, you too will feel a little off-balance. This Bond is visceral, darker, more prone to mistakes and wildly ambitious. Frankly, I think this is how Bond was intended to be, pre-franchise.

The slick production style, shiny story veneer and techno-wiz have been stripped off for deeper character development and some very intense action leaving everyone roughed up and in uncertain territory.

I was impressed not only with Craig's physical transformation but his acting and the fact that he opted to do most of his own stunts. Eva Green scores as the girl and of course who could ever be M but Judi Dench.

Casino Royale is my new favorite Bond flick. My guess is that it will wildly cheered by others, considering most of the 200 seats in my theatre contained a warm body at 10am this morning.


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Blogger steve'swhirlyworld said...

i'm looking forward to seeing this one!

8:18 AM

Blogger Jason said...

Just caught the new Bond. He nailed it. Best 007 movie since Goldeneye. Have a great Thanksgiving!

11:24 PM

Blogger ScottyFerguson said...

I'm torn. I'm going to have to see it again. I'm confused. While this is Bonds first mission It happens now. So Am I to forget the entire franchise and wait for all the other films to be remade? I'm truly torn. I dont get the direction producer Michael G Wilson is taking this. (I also thought his cameo was a little self indulgent) The one thing I did get a kick out of was the quick shot of Richard Branson being searched at the Airport. Cute.
I guess "Q's" advice: "Never let them see you bleed" is something Bond took to heart in his later adventures. (or earlier adventures as this is a prequel to coldwar stories????) As a stand alone film it is ok. As part of Bond cannon I'm truly unable to make up my mind. You are right this did throw me off balance. It may take me years to appreciate this film for what it is and not what I expect from a Bond film.

4:02 AM

Blogger Jim said...

Enjoy Steve!

9:48 AM

Blogger Jim said...

Ithink so too Jason, you have a great T-day too!

9:53 AM

Blogger Jim said...

Scotty, that was my thought too when I left the theatre. Now long-time Bond fans are in a temporal vacuum since the production, direction and acting for the Bond series is very different. I think we might see a series of "prequels" (complete with ananchronisms considering a prequel would mean pre-60's).

We will find out in 2008 since Craig's next adventure will come with "Bond 22", which is already in pre-production.

10:01 AM

Blogger Joshua said...

I'm excited about this one and the new bond flick. I love these kinds of movies!!!! I'm so glad you decided to join us on Gay Men Rule! Have fun with it!

3:44 AM

Blogger Jim said...

Thanks Joshua, I'll try to pitch in after the holidays and finals!

8:07 AM

Blogger The Persian said...

I cant wait to see it, and yes he has the most amazing body. :)

1:50 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Agreed Jim. Usually I am not attracted to other blondes, but DC is an exception. Maybe it was the gun? Maybe the swimsuit? Maybe the scene where he's tied naked to a chair?

Where was I, I think my train of thought derailed :)

4:04 PM

Blogger Mo said...

Hi Jim -- my first visit here, came here via GayMenRule.
I'm looking forward to seeing Casino Royale. My other half & I are huge Bond fans, and the reviews (such as yours) have convinced me to go into this one with an open mind --- even though for me, Pierce Brosnan was the epitome of Bond, James Bond.
But I'm still going to see this one (even if it doesn't have any Moneypenny!)
Happy Thanksgiving,

2:35 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Hi Mo,

I was a huge fan of Brosnan. When they announced Craig as the new 007, I was reluctant. The prequel has a much different feeling so its good that you're going in with an open mind. I think you will like Craig's performance, at a minimum he is good eye candy for two hours :)

4:02 PM

Blogger purpletwinkie said...

Did you say naked? Chair? Tied? I'm so seeing this movie.

10:25 PM

Blogger Jim said...

LOL, I knew that would be the hook for you Scott :)

1:28 AM

Blogger The Persian said...

Hey Buddy, congrats on the Best Gay Blogs article :)

1:53 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Thanks Jimbo, I think that clears up why I had quadruple blog traffic today, lol :)

(Guess I better post something soon)

4:23 PM

Blogger Joshua said...

Kudos on your Best Gay Blogs Blurb :)
Hope you had a great Turkey Day!

6:40 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Thanks Josh, I hope you did too!

9:37 AM

Anonymous bunny lynn said...

Hey there Jim Darlin', I just me that new James Bond! He just makes me want to do somethin' bad so he'll come a chasin' after me!

Huggs, etc... Bunny Lynn

12:27 PM

Blogger Jim said...

Oh, good idea Bunn Bunn, I probably need to go blow something up :)

3:17 PM


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