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Daniel Craig Bond Retrospective #1: Casino Royale

Let’s talk Bond. The current Bond. Daniel Craig became James Bond in 2005 when he was announced to lead a reboot of the long running 007 franchise. He faced a huge number of detractors who campaigned against his casting until Casino Royale started playing at theaters, which was met with a near-universal praise. Critics highlighted Craig’s rawer performance, comparing him favorably to Sean Connery’s Bond. 10 years have passed since that announcement, and Daniel Craig is ready to exit the iconic role. How well have his movies fared over the years? Let’s start with Casino Royale.


Single Sentence Synopsis:

James Bond, a hotshot new agent, must foil the plans of a genius statistician’s plan to fund a terrorist organization at a card tournament, but he ultimately fails when his lover, Vesper Lynd, betrays him.

The Villain:

Le Chiffre - Le Chiffre is a financier for a mysterious terrorist organization called Quantum. He is a master statistician who uses his smarts to game world economy and card tournaments. He also bleeds blood from his tear ducts.


The Real Villain:

Mr. White - Mr. White works as a liason for Quantum. He “saves” Bond when he kills Le Chiffre for failing to secure the money, but it’s later revealed that Bond survived only because of Vesper’s deal with White to deliver the money to the terrorists.


Bond Girls:

Vesper Lynd - Vesper is an employee of Her Majesty’s Treasury who falls in love with Bond. She betrays Bond twice: first when she actually turns over the money to the terrorists and when she resigns herself to death once she realizes she cannot live with the guilt of betraying Bond.


M’s Relationship with Bond:

Dame Judi Dench plays Bond’s typical frosty boss who doesn’t trust the newcomer’s ability to do his job because he’s inexperienced and impulsive. She warms up to him later on.



3. There’s not much scifi element in Casino Royale. The most advanced technology shown in the movie is probably the satellite-based tracking system and the bio-telemetric implant that Bond carries (both of which exist in real life in some form).


Notable Scenes:

  • Bond gets his testicles crushed when Le Chiffre batters his nether regions with a carpet beater. SHUDDER.
  • Bond coming out of the water in a bathing suit in a scene typically reserved for Bond Girls.
  • Bond comforts Vesper after she sees a man die in front of her.
  • Bond. James Bond.

Theme Song:

American rocker Chris Cornell sang the song “You Know My Name”, which had very literal lyrics.



So what are your thoughts on Casino Royale? What do you remember from it? I think Casino Royale deserves all the heaps of praise it got over the years. Not only was it a fresh take on the character, which helped redefine the franchise for the new age and the new audience, it was a well-written movie. Some people might have had problem with the pacing once Bond got to the titular casino, but I thought the movie is solid from beginning to the end. And I’m a sucker for tragic romances, so...

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