Casino Royale

Casino Royale ★★★★½

Tragic, more tragic than any origin story ought to be. Tragedy seems to follow Bond around everywhere, but seldom is it ever acknowledged and it's never enveloped almost an entire film before. Maybe it's because I respond so well to the poker match (the part adapted from the novel), but I am less enamoured with the original parts opening and closing the film. There's nothing explicably wrong with them and the set pieces are still among the high-water mark of espionage films, but I can't help but feel that they are too far detached from the adaptation at hand, which just so happens to be the most compelling part of the plot for me. It's a gripe I'll probably have with this forever, but it can't drag down one of the best characterizations of Bond and the chemistry Craig has with Eva Green.

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