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Bond rediscovered

EPI and I went out to see Casino Royale tonight and had an absolute blast. What a great film! Thrills and chills, humour, great dialogue, script, acting, cinematography, locations… seriously, this film had it.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’d heard good thing about it, but previous forays into James Bondland had left me cold. I’ve never been a fan. Mind you, Bond films have never been high on my list of flicks to see. Sean Connery and Roger Moore were a bit before my time, and during my Intellectual Film Snob phase the thought of going to see an über-commercial Bond film would have called forth the utmost disdain.

Nonetheless I managed to catch one or two on late-night TV in the past and wasn’t terribly impressed. Only one had I seen in a cinema before – I believe it a Pierce Brosnan Bond in that particular instance – and it was adequate in terms of entertainment value, but not much more. So, make no mistake, no-one was more surprised than I when I discovered that I had not enjoyed myself this much at a movie in a very long time.

First, I cannot understand all the hoopla surrounding Daniel Craig playing Bond. I am referring, of course, to the hysteria that broke out when it was announced that he’d be taking over from Brosnan. You’d think it was the apocalypse or something. A Bond that was blonde?! Again – I’m no expert on James Bonds but I can safely say that this man is the sexiest, most alluring, coolest actor that has appeared on the silver screen in a very long time, Bond or no Bond. Mmmm.

Secondly, visually the film is absolutely stunning. The locations were incredible – particularly the scenes shot in [supposedly] Montenegro – a new must-visit location that has been added to my ever-growing list. Also, I was chuffed to see that they’d used that Body Worlds exhibition I happened to catch in London a few years ago as one of the settings – and incredibly apt it was, too.

Third, the main bad guy is Danish. The secondary bad guy [well, one of them] is also Danish, and he’s actually appeared in some of my favourite films of the last few years. [Have I ever mentioned how superexcellent the films and television programmes that are coming out of Denmark these days are? We’re privileged here in Niceland that we get pretty much instant access to them.] Also, I was pleased to see that one of my favourite American character actors, Jeffrey Wright, was among the ensemble [this guy can absolutely transform himself from one part to the next – I offer Angels in America vs. Broken Flowers as evidence].

So, yeah. A great time was had. The other day someone enthused in one of the papers: ‘Bond is Back!’ I don’t really consider myself in a position to judge, but suspect he’s right.

THE WEATHER IS BACK!
… Ahem. Well the weather has always been here, and it’s been here today. The wind has died down and it’s still quite mild and the snow has all disappeared, for better or for worse. This is the first weekend in Advent, which is when the Nicelanders start getting serious about Christmas. Time to get the boxes out of storage this weekend, and put those Advent lights in the window, start planning how many cookie varieties to bake, and in which order we’ll carry out all the Traditions this year. Temps right now are 2°C, the sun came up at 10.45 and went down at 15.41. Only 21 more days to the winter solstice – yay!

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