Every fan of James Bond has their own favorite film and a litany of reasons on why their favorite actor is the only actor who could be considered the real 007. Discussions will rage on for years about Connery vs. Lazenby vs. Moore vs. Dalton vs. Brosnan, and as of 2006 we’ve added Daniel Craig to the endless debates.
What will rarely ever be mentioned or debated is which film was the worst in the series because the world collectively agrees that it is 1967’s Casino Royale starring Lawrence Brenton as Sir James Bond. It’s so forgettable in fact that it actually starred actor David Niven as Bond but you probably didn’t notice that I made up the name Lawrence Brenton.
Before the gritty Daniel Craig version of Bond that refreshed the series in 2006, we had the campy and rather weird quasi-bond parody Casino Royale. Along with Niven, the cast included Peter Sellers, Orson Welles, Deborah Kerr, John and Anjelica Huston, William Holden and Woody Allen as the head of the nefarious SMERSH organization. No kidding. What’s even more insane than the idea that someone would write and subsequently keep the word “SMERSH” in a script is that there was a very real SMERSH organization back in the 1940s. Despite all this, the film wasn’t intended to actually be a spy movie parody but was instead an attempt at a spy comedy featuring Niven as the older “original” Bond brought back from retirement to, you guessed it, save the world. Oh, and I also should add that David Prowse was also in it. He later played Darth Vader. So there’s that.
The plot is generally the same as the 2006 re-make where a criminal mastermind has no choice but to gamble on an extremely high stakes card game. The 1967 version had considerably less gritty bottomless chair testicle violence, but it more than made up for it with 100% more evil flying saucers.
YouTuber Steve Ramsden, who you may remember for the amazing Wes Anderson/Stanley Kubrick mash-up, is at it again, this time re-cutting the modern Casino Royale with the opening title sequence from the original.
The crazy part just might be that the song in the video above is the actual theme song from the original movie. Performed by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, the Casino Royale Theme is… hold on, looking for a thesaurus for the proper term….alright, found it, the theme is coo-coo-bananas crazy, you guys.
The visuals are completely real as well and lifted straight from the opening credits of the original film:
Not to take away from the recent Bond films that have revitalized the entire franchise, but the campy style of this re-cut does make us long for the days of spy movies that knew they were all somewhat silly. I suppose as a consolation we’ll just have to settle for modern Bond films like the upcoming (and completely amazing looking) Spectre!
What do you think of the re-cut trailer? Is it terrible that I want to see this version in its entirety? Let me know how awful you think it’d actually be in the comments below.