I very much enjoyed Casino Royale upon it's theatrical release back in December of '06. In fact, it nearly made my year-end top ten list. And re-watching it today, I am reminded of why I liked it so much (and why I like it even more now); it's very nearly a great film, and most certainly in the top 2-3 Bond films ever made. Daniel Craig is the perfect James Bond, resurrecting, and quite frankly, saving the series from it's embarrassing downward spiral - I don't see any reason to ever replace him with anyone else (okay, maybe Clive Owen at some point). Martin Campbell, who directed the last half way decent Bond flick Goldeneye, also took back the directing chair, and he turns in his most impressive work to date, helping establish this new Bond as much darker and hard-edged as well keeping the action more realistic (relatively speaking). This dark undercurrent is illuminated by the unbelievably gorgeous Eva Green, who puts a nice little spin on the typical "Bond Girl", building a character as tough, quick witted and unpredictable as Bond himself. But it really comes down to Craig; as long as he stays signed on, the franchise is in great hands.
The DVD is somewhat disappointing for being 2 discs. There is nothing on disc 1 besides the film, which granted looks great. And the second disc has a couple 20-30 minute docs on the making of the film and the special effects/stunts, as well as a mildly interesting set of interviews with former Bond girls. And there's a pointless Chris Cornell music video tacked on (oh how the mighty have fallen, huh?). At some point there will be a better DVD, but for now, it'll have to do.
Film (***1/2) - DVD (***)
Watch the trailer