Tag Archives: Daniel Craig

The Set of 400: #47 – My Favorite Nude Interrogation

Today! Because sometimes we pay so much attention to our enemies, we forget to watch our friends as well –

Casino Royale (2006)

Directed by Martin Campbell

Starring Daniel Craig (x4), Eva Green, Mads Mikkelsen, Judi Dench (x2), Jeffrey Wright, Giancarlo Giannini, Jesper Christensen, Caterina Murino, Simon Abkarian

The best Bond movie ever, from the best modern Bond director, Casino Royale had a very tall order come 2006. It had only been a lean four years since Pierce Brosnan’s relatively popular Bond run ended, and the new plan was to take 007 in a decidedly different direction. Whereas there normally is no rebooting of this series, per se, Casino purports to tell of Bond’s beginning, even with the same M from the past decade. It was the first Bond book, but never used as a mainline title so as to not be confused with the David Niven/Peter Sellers/Woody Allen parody of the same name from 1967, or the television adaptation starring Barry Nelson from 1954, I guess.

Not overly convincing, but Nelson was the first Bond, and still the only American in the role! I had this on VHS, but I believe you can now watch it on YouTube. It’s not great

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The Set of 400: #113 – My Favorite Impromtu Subway Stop

Today! Because I always hated this place –

Skyfall (2012)

Directed by Sam Mendes

Starring Daniel Craig (x3), Javier Bardem, Judi Dench, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Ralph Fiennes (x2), Albert Finney (x3), Rory Kinnear, Berenice Marlohe, Ola Rapace

Man, the Bond floodgates really opened here! For the third time in the last forty movies, we’ve got Ian Fleming all up in this piece. And unless I’m eyeballing the rest of the list incorrectly, we’ve got two Bonds still to come. Skyfall is my third favorite Bond movie? Really? Okay, I’ll take it. I wouldn’t have figured on this before, but as I said in #138 From Russia With Love (I think), my main enjoyment of the character is the very early films, and the very recent ones, and everything in between just blurs together. Even Moonraker.

Even as comically distinct as Moonraker is

In something that might only interest me, Skyfall also marked the end of one of the more interesting box office phenomenons ever. Across eight movies, covering 23 years, every James Bond movie outperformed the previous film in domestic gross. Come with me on this journey – starting in ’89 with License to Kill ($34.6 million) to GoldenEye ($106.4) to Tomorrow Never Dies ($125.3) to The World is Not Enough ($126.9) to Die Another Day ($160.9) to Casino Royale ($167.4) to Quantum of Solace ($168.3) to Skyfall, top of the heap at a whopping $304.3! I mean, there are a lot of narrow gains in there, but still, I don’t know of another film series that can claim anything like this. Fast and Furiouses three through seven all improved on each other, but that’s five movies in nine years. Not even close! Way to come along and screw the whole thing up, Spectre! Still the second highest grossing Bond film at $200 even, but come on!

We were all pulling for you, Spectre!

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The Set of 400: #221 – My Favorite Revenge Tattoo

Today! Because I want you to help me catch a killer of women –

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011)

Directed by David Fincher (x2)

Starring Rooney Mara, Daniel Craig (x2), Christopher Plummer, Stellan Skarsgard (x2), Robin Wright (x2), Joely Richardson, Geraldine James (x3), Steven Berkoff, Yorick van Wageningen, Goran Visnjic, Elodie Yung, Joel Kinnaman, Julian Sands, Donald Sumpter

I’ll tell you right off – I wasn’t a huge fan of the book, to the point that I never bothered reading the rest of the trilogy. I thought the plotting was interesting, but the writing was kinda dull, and it’s a bit overlong. So my expectations when they were making this movie weren’t super high. I also never watched the original Swedish Noomi Rapace versions – I meant to, as I’ve heard they are solid, but again, didn’t love the book, and then once this movie actually came out, I didn’t want to spoil the (potential, unrealized) sequels.

Rapace does look pretty bad-ass – might be time I finally watched these

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The Set of 400: #226 – My Favorite Telephone Bomb

Today! Because there is no peace at the end of this –

Munich (2005)

Directed by Steven Spielberg (x3)

Starring Eric Bana, Ciaran Hinds (x2), Daniel Craig, Geoffrey Rush, Mathieu Kassovitz, Hanns Zischler, Ayelet Zurer, Michael Lonsdale, Mathieu Amalric, Lynn Cohen

A great movie almost completely undone in audience’s minds by the bizarre choices in the finale, Munich at first glance appears to be a meditation on hate in the world, and the lengths good people go to in efforts to provide security and peace to their nation. But in reality, it is a straightforward action yarn, a vengeance thriller unlike pretty much any other, and a true story (-ish) to boot. And yes, it ends with the most awkward sex scene ever filmed.

That is one sweaty Bana, ladies and gents

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