One of the best action films ever just hit Netflix today, as 2006’s Casino Royale has landed on the streaming service. Fans will know that this is the first movie to star Daniel Craig as James Bond, kicking off his record-breaking tenure in the role that’s about to end with No Time To Die later this year.
Following the abysmal Die Another Day, the James Bond franchise was rebooted, with all the campiness and crazy gadgets thrown out and replaced with Bourne-style grit and realism. At the same time, the producers elected to go back to basics and so adapted Ian Fleming’s original novel that introduced 007 to the world. The result was the first ever cinematic origin story for the super spy, and it’s arguably his best ever movie.
Casino Royale follows a younger, more reckless Bond, who’s only just been appointed to 00 status, sent to the titular casino in Monaco to enter a high-stakes card game. His mission is to beat the villainous Le Chiffre, as played by Mads Mikkelsen, a financier to the world’s terrorists. Along the way, the secret agent falls in love with Eva Green’s Vesper Lynd. But will 007 be able to find happiness with Vesper, or will he learn his most important lesson: trust no one?
Martin Campbell’s film sits at a hugely impressive 95% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes, with users rating it almost as high at 89%. If you catch this one and enjoy it, you’ll be pleased to know that its direct sequel, 2008’s Quantum of Solace, has also gone up on Netflix today. Unfortunately, however, the follow-up didn’t manage to replicate Casino Royale‘s success and it has a pretty divisive reputation.
Still, the two movies together make a great double serving of James Bond goodness. And it’s only fitting to remind ourselves of how Craig’s version began his screen journey before it ends. So, be sure to catch Casino Royale on Netflix when you can.