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Casino Royale (2006)
OK. I went to see this movie after some serious consideration. I had seen Daniel Craig ina few other films (Layer Cake, Munich) and disliked him immensely in both. Despite being a die hard Bond fan I was seriously considering not watching this one because of the choice of Bond.
Was I glad I went? Yes...despite Craigs performance the film was immensely enjoyable. It was the strongest Bond film, and one of my major criticisms was why in the hell wasn't Pierce given any material like this? IMOm Pierce was a much stronger actor and better bond and I couldn't help but think of him in this film, instead of the cheesy popcorn Bonds he was stuck with after Goldeneye
Anyway, some time into the movie I suddenly realised that I believed that Craig was Bond, I was comparing him less and less to Pierce and was seeing him without judging him.
However, IMO there were a few major downsides to this movie.
1/ The first villain we see Bond really chase (The one he goes into the embassy for) it is never explained why they guy could jump 20 foot in the air etc...during the whole chase sequence with te black guy and Bond I felt like I was stuck in the Tigger movie. I know Bond films are meant to contain amazing stunts, and spectacular unbelievable chase sequences but this one just had me laughing in my seat.
2/ This is personal judgement, but I find DC unattractive...and Bond has always been a good looking guy. Its a big part of the film because when the film falls flat, which it does at some point in every Bond film (and I am a massive fan, I have the DVD boxset so please don't accuse me of being unloyal) and it does on occasion fall flat, DC does not have the classic Bond wit, the looks or even any personality to pull the film back. I understand them cutting back on the wit a little, to try and give the film darker edge like the novels, but there were times this film needed it, and DC had as much personality as a wet rag
3/ Judi Dench is my favourite "M" of all time, but she shouldn't have been in this movie. The point in Casino Royale was to start from the beginning...how can they start at the beginning with as Valentin Dmitrovich Zukovsky says in Goldeneye "I hear the new M is a lady?" Again, I understand that they would have wanted to keep her as familiar face to help people get used to the idea of a new Bond, but I think that they should have got a man to play "M" again like the early films, who? I have no idea...and I hate to nitpick, but as soon as M appeared the first thing I thought was that quote from Valentin
However, there are some massive upsides to this film. Apart from the first fight (the embassy scene) and the last fight (In the house in Venice) the fight scenes are much more realistic, and gritty than in previous Bond films. Q says in TWINE "I always tried to teach you two things. First, never let them see you bleed..." Q isn't in this movie but Bond does more than his fair share of bleeding which makes the film much more realistic.
Will I watch it again...certainly Am I convinced of DC as Bond...Im getting there Am I looking forward to the next one? Hell Yeah!
Amazing stuff...Bruce is back!!!
Wow...OK...I confess now I was a little confused at times during the film. But in my defence I was watching the film on a very good quality pirate DVD, but some things were a little hard to make out, sometimes the picture went a tad dark, and I was left squinting at the TV trying to work out what happened...
But despite all that after the first 10 minutes (and Bruces BAD facial hair) I was on the edge of the seat for the rest of the movie. Yes there are some clichés in there, but its more homage to the great films of recent years rather than anything else. Look for the stuff in the air vents...its taken straight from "Alien"...and there's some subtle "Die Hard" references if you can catch them.
If you want an action film, there's few movies bar the original "Die Hard" trilogy that are better. Bruce is the typical hero that fails in his mission, quits his job, but redeems himself by the end of the movie...but he manages to put some amazing emotional stuff in there. The difference between this film and other action movies is that this time Bruce is fallable. People get killed, Bruce makes mistakes and people pay for them...and he cries. Hes not a robot killing machine, hes more human here than as John McClaine.
I think Bruce is the last of the great action stars. Sly Stallone is getting old, Harrisson Ford and Mel Gibson are on the way out and Jean Claude Van Damme's is on the straight to video...thing..there are no real action stars in the movies today to take over from our hero's so enjoy "Hostage" for what it is. An amazing roller-coaster ride of a film easily on par with Bruces earlier action films.
10 out of 10
Good...not great but definately worth watching!
Yes...Ok...I admit it. I watched this film for Viggo. Not only Viggo, I am a 21yr old riding instructor who has been riding for 17 yrs and own 4 horses of my own.
There were moments of this film which truely were great. Especially the relationship between Viggo and Hidalgo (its hearwarming to know that the bought this horse after filming, just like he did in LOTR) Its clear that he his a compassionate man who loves animals and a talented rider. The only other actor I would have liked in this role is Russell Crowe. The man has the ability to play anything and a great rider to boot.
However, parts of the script seemed cliched, and just why did everyone speak english? Especially the goat herder who would most likely have had no education? Ok...I know it was so we didnt have to spend the whole film reading subtitles but hey...
Also, so much happened it seemed rushed, alsmost like the when the script was being written they all sat down and said: "Right, its in a desert to there has to be a sandstorm...thats cool...and what if the Sheiks daughter gets kidnapped...great...then of course a nasty british villain...evry film needs one. Ooohhh, and lets put in bear traps and injure the horse...but he cant be lame because hes gotta win..."
Thats the major point that bugged me, the great gaping wound that Hidalgo suffers yet he remains totally sound. Anyone with horses knows that the smallest puncture wound can make a horse lame let alone a 12 inch stab wound across a shoulder!
But never mind, there are many more discrepancies you may find. but forget them and enjoy this film for what it it. A heart warming story with great central performances. Viggo is fantastic, as is Omar Sharrif, and enjoy the chemistry Viggo has with the horses... My vote, 8 out of 10
Simply amazing...one of the best films of the year...savvy?
OK. I went to see this film full of doubts. My friend is a few years younger than me and loves Orlando Bloom since his appearance as Legolas and she liked Johnny Depp to so not surprising she saw it on opening night. After dealing with her gushing over the male leads and for a few days and constant bugging by my brother to see the film I eventually went with no expectations. I wasnt a great fan of 'Legolas' and Id only seen Johnny Depp in Sleepy Hollow which was (IMHO) rather an odd film.
From the second Depp appeared on screen I was hooked. Orlandos first appearance in the governors house had left me swooning but it was Johnny Depp that left me glued to the screen. Jack Sparrows introduction was amazing and had me in stitches (my condition for most of the film)
The performances by each of the main characters was absolutely flawless, the chemistry that played between Will, Elizabeth and Jack was sparkling. The special effects were brilliant and the story was enthralling.
I have to say that I left the film deeply on love with both Orlando and Johnny...but more so Jack Sparrow! Johnny Depp stole this film. His performance was faultless and as unlikely as it is he deserves an oscar for this performance - he was flawless!
I left the cinema with the film still fresh in my head, and went to see it the next day...and 3 times the week after. I have also already managed to obtain the film on DVD and its already been watched at home 4 times and is in danger of melting! Im even starting to pick up some of Jacks words...savvy? :-) Now thats not a good sign...LOL
IMHO I give this film top marks...10/10 fantastic performances from the 4 leads: Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom in particular but Geoffrey Rush and Kieira Knightley were on top form too. A must see.