Casino Royale

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Just got back from seeing Casino Royale, the 21st installment of the James Bond series.

They’ve finally given the Bond series the kick it needed to get back into the game. You could see it turning around with Pierce Brosnan, and I won’t lie, I didn’t have a lot of faith in Daniel Craig (even after seeing Layer Cake), but they really did it.

They take you back to the “early years” and show you how Bond got his double-O status, then through his first mission. It’s a really fun movie on any level, but I’m so glad to see it hold its own with other action/adventure movies that have been coming out lately. You used to have to rate Bond movies on a separate scale; you can rate this one on a scale with its peers and it holds way up.

The bad guy is great, if a little creepy, and the causes they fight for are actually reasonably believeable. There’s not really a “Bond girl” in this one. Not that I didn’t really like Eva Green, but she… I don’t know. She wasn’t really a Bond girl.

The only thing I took a little issue with (and quickly got over) was that they created a sort of a time paradox. Bond fought his way through the Cold War and kicked SPECTRE ass. But at one point, M says, “I miss the Cold War.” If Bond is just starting at MI-6, then the timeline sort of says the Cold War hasn’t happened yet. (Then again, of all the stupid inconsistencies and holes to pick up on, that’s what I find? Yeah, I let it go just like the rest. If you give up and just buy it, it’s a hell of a lot more fun.)

I’ll definitely be picking this up when it comes out on DVD. If you haven’t already gone to see it, go. It’s worth the full price at the theater to see Bond back in the saddle again.