The Spy Who Rocked My World

Due to my work schedule, rarely do I get out of the house to trek to the theaters these days. Yesterday, I nearly knocked the door off the hinges in my determination and rush to see Casino Royale.

Daniel Craig, a wonderfully talented actor, withstood an angry (read: ugly) out cry from avid Bond fans when announced as the next 007. It had nothing to do with talent and everything to do with looks. At the time, I had recently viewed Craig in Layer Cake. In addition to being a powerful actor, the man had 'It', that undefinable essence, charisma, sex appeal. You know. It. I knew he'd rock as James Bond. And boy, does he ever.

Bartender: Shaken or stirred?
James Bond: Does it look like I give a damn?

That just about sums up the new Bond. *g*

I'm not going to offer a review here. I agree with most of the on-line reviews by movie critics. What they said, except I don't think it was too long. It was, however, complicated. The intrigue kept me guessing even as the credits rolled. Like Syriana, I need to see Casino Royale again to fully understand the plot. Not that I'm complaining. I hope to catch this riviting movie again on the big screen and I will own the DVD for multiple viewings. Yes, I liked it that much. Screenwriters Neil Purvis and Robert Wade, Director Martin Campbell, and Actor Daniel Craig have breathed new life into Ian Fleming's James Bond. I was not only entertained, but inspired! Thank you. I needed that.

Bond and his leading lady were multi-layered characters, playing on the angle that no one is all good or all bad. Although the movie was packed with heart-racing action sequences, there were plenty of heart-racing 'real' moments. My favorite was the shower scene (pictured above). In my opinion, simultaneously the sexiest and most tender scene in the movie. Moments like those are what inspire me to write romantic fiction. It was also a reminder that a scene does not have to be graphic to be sexy. I believe it was Nora Robert's who said, "It's not in the motion, but in the emotion." That thought and the heart and complexity of Craig's Bond have me attacking my WIP with renewed energy. All I can say is, wow.


Tori Lennox said…
I have to confess I was one of the ones who wasn't thrilled with him as the choice for the new Bond. The bits I've seen on TV, though, do look pretty dreamy. So I'm glad I was wrong. (Though I still think James Bond should have dark hair. *g*)

I had much the same reaction when Antonio Banderas was announced as the new Zorro. I thought he was an awful choice. But I was wrong there, too. *g*
Mary Stella said…
Color me envious, B. I want to see this movie, but will have to wait until the weekend. Since you and I have seen many movies together, I trust your judgment. If you're this blown away by the new Bond (pardon the pun), then I bet that I will be, too.!
Jordan Summers said…
You know I LOVED the film. I totally agree on the emotional layers the shower scene evoked. Terrific! Terrific! Terrific! And I will be going to see it again. The DVD is as good as purchased. :)
Beth Ciotta said…
Tori, knowing what a HUGE Zorro fan you are, I can imagine that your 'vision' of him was quite specific. Banderas did smoke the role, didn't he? *g*

M, I'm pretty sure you're going to dig Casino Royal. Just go in knowing this is like no 'Bond' you've met before. He's hard core.

Jordan, we're totally on the same page. ;)
Scott Oden said…
I saw it opening night and absolutely loved it. Probably the best movie I've seen this year. Finally, a Bond who looks as though he's capable of killing his enemy (IMHO, only Timothy Dalton and occasionally Sean Connery looked like they had the cajones to actually put a gun to someone's head and kill them . . . the rest were just actors).
Anonymous said…
Ok, can someone please, make a good movie with a bunch of hot Romans now so I'll get some inspiration? If you need some casting ideas, Sean Bean and Clive Owen would make excellent Romans, and somewhere I'm sure you can sneak Karl Urban and Ioan Gruffud in. :)

Wait, they can use one of my NiPs. *grin*
Beth Ciotta said…
Scott, I have to agree. The first Bond that looks like he could actually kick serious butt. Although Connery came close. I read an interview with Craig where he discussed his training program and all of the stunts he actually performed. Grueling and impressive.
Beth Ciotta said…
Hot Romans. Sean Bean and Clive Owen. "Yum." Oops. Did I say that out loud? *g* Nice casting, Gabriele. Now I have to go look up those other two gentlemen. Not familiar with them. Sounds like I should be. :) Oh, and if they make that movie, I'll be standing right behind you in the ticket line.
Anonymous said…
Beth, I sometimes post 'Casting Fun', so here's Ioan Gruffud and Karl Urban.
Anonymous said…
An excellent film! If his next one is this good, he'll be remembered as better than Sean Connery, a feat thought impossible until now.
Beth Ciotta said…
Thanks for the pics, Gabriele. I recognized the faces right away. First thought: Ah, Horatio Hornblower. :) (loved that series)

Richard, Craig certainly set the bar high. Here's hoping he can equal or best his performance in the next installment. Apparently, the next film--Bond 22--is in pre-production. Release date 2008. Can't wait!
Taylor said…
Beth, I absolutely agree with you on the film. Casino Royale is A-MAZING and I will be seeing it for the second time tomorrow. It took my breath away. I loved it, and I too will own it on DVD.

P.S. - A screenwriting credit went also to Paul Haggis, the screenwriter for the Oscar-winning "Crash" and "Million Dollar Baby" films. Both are extremely powerful, character-driven films and Haggis was definitely a big help in the Bond world. I'm shaken AND stirred!

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