I am not a fan of movie remakes. When a film debuts, it holds elements of the era in which it was produced. In my opinion something is lost in the transition, with remaking movies in later decades. Why I wonder do we have to tamper with perfection, and not leave some things as is?
My favorite movie of all time, is the original Casino Royale, which was released in April 1967. This film has an all star cast, including David Niven, Deborah Kerr, Orson Wells, Woody Allen, Ursula Andress and Peter Sellers. In my opinion it is a work of sheer genius.
This spoof of James, Bond has Niven as the original 007. When his fellow secret agents are being murdered throughout the world, men and women are recruited to also portray James Bond in order to throw the enemy off track.
Casino Royale is a humorous, fast paced, tongue in cheek, movie, the likes of which is no longer seen today. I love that it is romantic in nature, with sex implied instead of being shoved in your face. There is a method to the madness, as Niven’s 007 tries to find out who is heading the organization that is killing his comrades. He is stunned to find it is his neurotic nephew, Jimmy Bond, who is played by Woody Allen.
The music score, the wardrobe of the cast, the film locations, special effects, and even furniture all seem to come to life. The actors are superb in their respective roles. In my opinion the 2006 remake staring Daniel Craig cannot hold a candle to the original. To it’s credit the remake is not an updated carbon copy of the 1967 film. it has an entirely different story line.
I happened upon a 40th anniversary two disc DVD of Casino Royale about 5 years ago. I played it so much that the discs wore out. I absolutely love the theme song by Burt Bacarach. What I enjoy most, is that Casino Royale is a fun movie.
Unlike today where there is extreme violence, and explicit sex, and a dark side to most films, Casino Royale is pure fun, leaves much to the imagination, and is escapism at it’s finest. I believe Baby Boomers looking to recapture a bit of yesteryear, will certainly find it in Casino Royale.
They say there is a fine line between genius and insanity. Casino Royale gives us both, with everything else in between. There is slap stick comedy, dramatic moments, and sheer lunacy all rolled up into one film. Long live the 1967 Casino Royale , which is also now on Blue ray.