Cinema: Keystone Cop-Out

Casino Royale starts with a premise that is cheerfully cheeky: Sean Connery is an impostor. The real 007 is David Niven, now Sir James Bond, retired to a county seat. Visited by an all-star team of secret agents including William Holden, Charles Boyer and John Huston, he is persuaded to re-enter Her Majesty's Service, an experience that he soon finds simply SMERSHing. Along the way he encounters Joanna Pettet, the byproduct of his illicit union with Mata Hari; Peter Sellers, a green-gilled card shark who impersonates James Bond; Woody Allen as Jimmy Bond, James's narky nephew; and the ubiquitous Ursula...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!