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Friday, December 12, 2014

Movie Review:Casino Royale

Premise:A new special agent works to bring down a villain through a poker tournament.

Cast:Daniel Craig as James Bond, Eva Green as Vesper Lynd, Mads Mikkelsen as Le Chiffre, Giancarlo Gianni as Mathis, Simon Abkarian as Alex Dimitrios, Judi Dench as M, full cast can be found here.

Director:Chris Cornell

MPAA Rating:PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, a scene of torture, sexual content and nudity


Notes:Poster taken from IMP Awards.

Pros:Vesper. A more realistic villain.

Cons:Several sequences feel longer than necessary. Little depth to most characters. Takes too long to actually get to the plot.

You ever think what Bond's first few years in the business must have been like?

Several sequences (particularly the action ones) felt like they took longer than they needed to. The first half of the movie was the worst about this. One chase scene took five minutes to finish, or at least it seemed that way. And it took them quite a while to actually get to the plot. But this does start to improve near the end.

Vesper I did like. She was quick-witted but not inhumanly cold. Bond himself was a mix of arrogance and frustration. The rest of the characters, meh. The whole thing is pretty forgettable.

Sorry this was rather short, but it's what I've got. Overall, this will appeal to certain people, but I am not one of them.

Sex:When Bond and Vesper meet, there's quite a bit of flirting. She states he sees women as disposable and calls his rear end "perfectly formed." When she tells him he'd be more of a man than anyone she had met with just his smile and his little finger, this leads to a conversation about the two having sex. She objects to the undercover name of Stephanie Broadchest. When he proposes they share a room as part of an undercover operation, she retorts that she will pretend to be a strict Catholic, thus ruining his plans of having sex with her. This plan apparently gets thrown out later.
A man is stripped naked to be tortured. His male captor remarks "You've taken good care of your body. Such a waste." He threatens to feed his victim his own genitals. A man calls a bikini-clad woman "my beauty" as he threatens to cut off her arm (or her head).
Bond notices a woman's poor interactions with her husband and later goes to her. They make out (clothed) and her kisses move further down his body, but Bond leaves before anything more can happen. She says he must like married women, he says it keeps things simple (and later says single women aren't his type). She also wonders why she always goes for bad men like her husband and Bond. He and Vesper do have sex eventually (the camera focuses on their legs). Before one such instance, they kiss wildly. Once he tells her she tastes nice. When she talks about feeling reborn, he asks wouldn't she be naked if she was just born.
Bond tells Vesper to wear a low-cut dress in order to distract the men at the card table. But then Le Chiffre's girlfriend comes out wearing an even more revealing outfit. In one such case, you can see a man gawking. Other women wear similar outfits and revealing swimwear. Men go shirtless. People kiss a lot. A couple of women check out Bond as they walk by. M is shown in bed with a man. One of Bond's contacts hits on Vesper.

Violence:Plenty of people are shot or threatened with guns. There are also fights with fists and knives, plus a few shootouts. Stuff blows up, necks are snapped, and someone is tasered. There's mild blood, and characters wind up with wounds on their faces and bodies. A minor character has some pretty bad burn scars. M threatens to kill Bond for screwing up so badly. He responds that people of his status rarely live long, so she won't need to deal with him for long.
A naked man is tied to a chair and tortured by being smacked in the testicles with a heavy rope. You can hear a woman in the next room being tortured as well. It's remarked should her male companion give up the necessary information, she'll live. And if he does it quickly, she might be in one piece. A woman is found dead in a hammock (the camera zooms in on her face). Whoever killed her tortured her beforehand. A different woman drowns.
A man threatens to cut off a woman's arm and her head. People come dangerously close to being hit by cars. A guy gets a nail in the eye. Bond gets into a brutal fight in a bathroom, smacking into and destroying a lot of things. He tries to drown the guy in the sink. A man is choked to death. A remark is made about a man being cut into pieces of meat while he's still alive.
Bond bulldozes through a construction site, causing all matter of collateral damage. He and a man fight while over a long drop. A car flips over several times, injuring the driver. A building is destroyed. Someone is poisoned and goes into cardiac arrest as a result. Vesper helps Bond kill a man and becomes distressed because of it. Bond himself says he'd be bad at his job if he let killing people disturb him.

Drugs/Alcohol:People drink booze socially and during dates.

Language/Insults:"H*ll", "arse", "d**n", "bloody", "G*d", and "bas**rd" are all used a few times. Once or twice are the words "prig", "Chr*st", "b**ch", "p*ss", and "b*gger" said.

Spiritual:As mentioned, Vesper makes Catholicism part of her cover (or at least threatens to). At this, Bond replies "I hate when religion comes between us." You can see a man wearing a cross. He asks Le Chiffre if he believes in God, the answer is no. Bond summarizes one of M's requests as asking him to be half monk, half hit-man. A man says he's leaving his job while he still has a soul to salvage.

12/27/2016 update:A black man threatens a white woman while making a pass at her.

So what did you think?

© 2014 by M.R.R.

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