Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Casino Royale

The name's Bond, James Bond.

Went to watch the new 007 movie last night with the bf and my godparents. Despite my initial skepticism, it was really good. And the airport scene also explains why I temporarily lose my suitcases every year while flying home. @%#* you, terrorists and secret agents.

My initial reluctance to watch the movie stemmed from my inability to digest a blond Bond. However, shortly after the opening credits, I saw him in action and my jaw dropped. This guy is good. And HOT. He makes Pierce Brosnan look like a sissy-boy. And I like Pierce Brosnan! I have always wanted to see Hugh Jackman be cast as Bond but then again, I'm totally biased. I'd see Hugh Jackman in anything...the man can sing, act and dance. More importantly, he kicks ass, sprouts metal blades from his knuckles and kills vampires. Can you beat that? The only way to defeat this hero is by proclaiming, "I am a Scientologist" This trumps everything.

Jumped on couches lately? It's okay, just say, " I'm a Scientologist"

Insulted any depressed post-partum women lately? It's okay if you're a Scientologist

The press hounding you for making stupid, chauvinist statements after CCTV operators focused on the thighs of female journalists instead of the Penang Municipal City Council meeting proceedings? "If the dress was not sexy, the incident would not have happened" Instead of blaming the decently dressed journalist, the Penang Municipal Council president Datuk Abu Bakar Hassan should have replied, "We're Scientologists" Would have worked out better for him, I think.

Okay, I am getting out of hand. Back to the Bond movie.....spoiler alert. Stop reading now if you have not watched the movie.

This Bond is more testosterone laden and athletic compared to all the other Bonds, barring Sean Connery's. He's quick to react, unafraid to take risks but most impressively, pauses at times to assess the situation and THINK. Beauty and brains= I like. Craig's juggernaut-like Bond contributes to propelling the movie's momentum from the get go. It hit the ground running, so to speak. Just look at this man, he gets my blood running.

I particularly enjoyed the clever dialog, especially between Eva Green's Vespar and Craig's Bond. The scene on the luxury train to Montenegro was well crafted. During Vespar and Bond's verbal exchange, we witness a crack in his impassive facade and catch a glimpse of vulnerability as well. Vespar uses her sarcasm and beauty as armor and could have come off as a total bitch if not for her ready smile which comes off looking sincere. She laughs at others but more so at herself, as though she was only playing a role. We later find out that she is.

Casino Royale allows its audience to see the man behind the mask that is James Bond, to see that for all his amazing abilities, he is only a man. This Bond feels, he loves and he screams in pain as his family jewels are walloped over and over again. As soon as I figured out what Le Chiffre was going to do with the rope, I could not stop a very loud, "OWWW" from escaping in the theater. This prompted laughter from some members of the audience. Sorry people. In this situation, the usual silent stoic Bond would have been unrealistic.

Besides the great scenery and background locations (hello, Mr White's castle in Montenegro), those were the best parts of the movie. They kinda lost me a little during the sappy falling-in-love scenes.

Also disturbing was the realization that I was more upset upon seeing the destruction of Bond's Aston Martin (what a gorgeous car!!) than watching people get killed. I was like, "Noooo...... don't harm the car" This is a testament to the prevalence of violence in movies, mirroring the escalation of violence in today's society. I am reminded daily at work.

I also like to pick apart movie plots and nothing bothers me more than loose ends or gaps in the plot/logic. Pleasantly, there were only a few things that bothered me while watching the film:

  1. The scene where Bond goes to the Bahamas to track the originator of the 'ELLIPSIS' text message. He has the exact time when the message was sent so he goes to the security room of the beach club and searches the security camera archives for the suspect. Clever no? Then he correctly picks the one camera that was focusing on the driveway of the club. Wow. Then he fast forwards the film to the exact time that the message was sent, and sees the suspect coming out of his car and handing the keys to the valet. Brilliant right? Wait, how do you send a text message and valet your car at the same time? I'm not that talented personally so I think this scene's logic is flawed.
  2. After Bond was poisoned with digitalis (we were informed in the movie), he was instructed to use the defibrillator to shock himself. Unless, Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) guidelines changed on me, you cannot shock unless you are in ventricular fibrillation (V-fib) or pulseless ventricular tachycardia (pulseless V-tach), at which time you would not be talking. It's called a cardiac arrest for a reason. And he was certainly not there yet according to the scanner rhythm shown, so the machine would not even work! This is to protect people from getting shocked by accident-something that can actually trigger cardiac arrest. It definitely made more sense when Eva Green shocked him when she found him unconscious. I'm sure there were at least a few ACLS instructors, paramedics, nurses, physician assistants and doctors that cringed at that scene. This is also why the bf does not watch medical shows with me.
  3. Why did Vespar have to die? If she was innocent and was coerced into betraying Bond, why didn't she fight to live? She knew that Bond loved her and proved it by struggling to save her even after she betrayed him. That's just selfish man.

All this aside, it was still a great movie and I'd definitely watch it again. I would give up 4 plates of Char Koay Teow (fried noodles) for this movie. Five plates of Char Koay Teow for Mr Daniel Craig. Yummmy!

1 comment:

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