|He wanted to be James Bond. They wanted him to be Peter Sellers.
So Sir James Bond (a magnificent David Niven, in a lead role that was meant to be a cameo) has turned his back on the world, but the combined intelligence forces of the international community try to persuade him out of retirement, and when he refuses they blow up his house for some reason. There follows an interminable half hour in Scotland before we get to either the plot or the memorably funny parts.
|Mata Bond in East Germany, with a young Ronnie Corbett.
The first time I saw 'Casino Royale' I genuinely thought I'd fallen asleep and was dreaming. It was about the time the horse gallops onto the spaceship in Trafalgar Square, though my brain had been struggling to keep up with the pictures ever since Le Chiffre's torture of the mind, a sequence in which Peter Sellers is bombarded by hundreds of illusory bagpipers, one of whom is Peter O'Toole but doesn't know it. Peter Sellers tries to cry for help but the only thing to come from his mouth is an animated speech-bubble. I tend to assume that this is what hallucinogenic drugs are like. If it isn't, then they aren't worth taking.
|Sir James Bond escapes from one of the great sixties evil lairs.