I caught the new Bond trailer, and I'm sold on a few things. Casino Royale looks action-packed and a little grittier than your usual Bond fare (not as gritty as, say, The Bourne Identity, but how sad would it be if the franchise started copying the Bourne series?). It also looks like the character has more at stake this time, so that helps. Now for the more controversial element: Daniel Craig is going to be a very good Bond. He's going to be hit-and-miss with a lot of people at first because A) he doesn't look like the traditional bond type (more rugged than handsome) and B) the few people that have seen him probably only know him as the creepy brother from Road To Perdition. If anybody has their doubts as to Craig's talent for the job, check him out in Layer Cake. Craig really convinces me he’s the right man for the job with a great little moment in the trailer when he responds, "You noticed." Classic Bond line (in context) and pitch-perfect delivery from Craig. This is promising stuff.
Catch a Fire
This wasn't on my list of movies to see this year but after watching the international trailer it might be a top tenner. I somehow missed the coming attraction when the national trailer was released, but having watched both now, I'm impressed. The film is directed by Phillip Noyce, who is in some kind of artistic resurgence lately. Noyce is one of those European directors from the '80s who got stuck making action films like Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger in the '90s. But in the last few years he's directed movies like Rabbit-Proof Fence and The Quiet American, both very good films.
Also, it's always nice when Tim Robbins really puts his acting gloves on, as the case seems to be here. His South African accent seems to work well enough. But Derek Luke is the one that looks like he may be headed into some Oscar territory. This looks to be one powerful drama. For a synopsis and a link to the trailers, click here.