Casino Roy

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first: I don’t like the theme tune. It is much better than the awful Madonna theme from Dire Another Day (do you see what I did there?), but fails to pass the Bondness threshold.

That’s a shame, because everything else about Casino Royale is pretty much spot on. There’s no campery, over-reliance on gadgets, mwa-ha-ha-take-over-the-world-with-my-big-laser plots or scenery chewing, unlike in yer Brosnans or yer Moores. It’s very much as advertised: back-to-basics, raw, gritty, violent. A bit like yer Daltons or yer Connerys, but with fewer wigs and not, you know, in the 1980s. And just generally better.

I was never one of those nay-sayers who scoffed at the casting of Daniel Craig as Bond, none of whom could come up with reasons better than “he’s a bit ginger”. They forgot that Bond is supposed to be English, and yet has been played by a Scot (Connery), an Australian (Lazenby), a “Welsh-born Englishman” (Dalton) and an Irishman (Brosnan). And that Felix Leiter, that old fraud, has been played by about a million different actors, both white and black. And ditto Blofeld, etc.

I’ve decided that most Bond films take place in their own universe, independent of all other Bond films. This works, apart from some disparities (such as the multiple appearances of Jaws and J.W. Pepper and others, a few references to Bond’s dead wife, and more), and it’s the only way to avoid cranial implosion regarding continuity. This film blows away any attempts to do so anyway, since it shows the start of Bond’s 00 career and yet has Judi M rather than harrumphing old Bernard M, and is of course set in the present.

Oh, enough Bond geekery. Wikipedia has it all, you know.

Avaragado’s rating: salty water

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Casino Roy

  1. Anonymous

    enlarge and augment

    You forgot to mention the klaxxons.

    • Re: enlarge and augment

      Goon #2: “I godda brudder”

      Bond: “Small world”

      As my brother, for it is he, correctly points out, some other traditional Bond elements are present and correct:

      • Enlarge and augment, in which comedy amounts of detail are implausibly revealed in close-up to move the plot along quickly. The classic of the genre: You Only Live Twice, where Bond and Tanaka discover the name of a ship in five seconds by zooming in on a microdot using a slide projector. (I love the comment on that page, which essentially says “Please don’t reproduce my copyright violation without my permission.”)
      • Generic klaxon sound, as used in, I suspect, every Bond film. We even get a close-up of a klaxon in this one, to emphasise its klaxonity.

      Sadly missing: generic laser sound. You know the one, the high-pitched slightly scratchy whine you hear in Bond films whenever there’s a laser in view. Despite lasers not actually making a noise, and despite laser light not actually being visible unless there’s some dust around to scatter the beam. I believe this first made an appearance in Goldfinger (“You exshpect me to talk?” “No, Mr Bond, I expect you to die.”)

      It was great in our house, you know. We used to spend the summer holidays watching Bond films on video.

      See also: the Wilhelm scream.

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