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Casino Royale
Album Cover Art
U.S. Cover
Foreign Cover
Album 2 Cover Art
Single Cover
Album 3 Cover Art
Composed and Produced by:

Orchestrated and Conducted by:
Nicholas Dodd

Title Song Performed by:
Chris Cornell
Labels Icon
Sony Classical
(November 14th, 2006 (Score Album))

(December 12th, 2006 (Song Single))
Availability Icon
The Sony album is a regular U.S. release. The foreign pressing with different cover art has identical contents to the American album. The song single retails for $9.50, a poor deal. On iTunes, the additional material is only available as part of a full album purchase for $12, two dollars more than the cost of the album on iTunes without the additional content. There is no pressed CD alternative for the additional score tracks. The title song is available as a single on iTunes for a much more reasonable $1.
The score was nominated for a BAFTA Award. The song "You Know My Name" was nominated for a Grammy Award.
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Availability | Awards | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you want to hear the first truly intelligent James Bond score in quite some time.

Avoid it... if the sacrifice of the franchise's flamboyancy in its music, or the awkward album situation, deter you from a trusted favorite.
Review Icon
WRITTEN 12/1/06
Casino Royale: (David Arnold) For the first time since the age of Sean Connery's famed stint as James Bond, the franchise has summoned the roots of its character and closely followed one of writer and creator Ian Fleming's books. Gone are many of the trademarks solidified by Roger Moore's wise-cracking, easy-going version of the agent in the 1970's. Gone is the sophistication and poise instilled by Pierce Brosnan in the 1990's (and the price tag too high in the 2000's for MGM to retain him). Gone is "Q" and the majority of the techno-gadgets. Gone is the concept of the super-villain, though an organization like "Spectre" is hinted. Most importantly, gone is the formula in which you --as the audience-- never expect anything truly bad to happen to 007. Indeed, Casino Royale brutalizes its main character's body and mind in ways almost refreshing to audiences, and it's understandable given the need to shape the future personality of the character. This is not a pleasant film for much of its running time, nor is it flashy, and these two factors would weight heavily in the new direction composer David Arnold would take with the film's music. In almost every regard, Casino Royale is different from Arnold's previous three scores in the franchise, though like the presence of Judi Dench in the film, it's refreshing to see confidence placed by the studio in elements of the production, such as Arnold, that don't necessarily need fixed. Faithful collectors of Bond soundtracks will often cite Die Another Day as by far the least appealing of Arnold's music for the franchise, partially due to the horrific title song performed by Madonna (which Arnold had no direction over) and also partially due to Arnold's own cranked up electronics that often served up an obnoxious dose of classless noise that didn't fit the franchise now or ever before. But things would change.

He would have to rethink his approach to Casino Royale because the film would require a significant number of conversation cues, romantic structures, and action sequences that rely on gritty perseverance rather than electronic aides. Even more pronounced is the simple fact that Daniel Craig's muscle-bound Bond isn't refined yet in Casino Royale. In the process of earning his double-0 status, he stumbles along the way, and Arnold responds appropriately by hinting at the eventual "coolness" of the character without allowing its full statement until the final scene. With all of the above limitations in mind, Casino Royale is an outstanding transitional score. Arnold manages to retain the overall formula of the franchise (with it's opening song and its interpolated themes and styles) while offering music that reflects the far more serious and dramatic needs of the plot. The major part of the formula that fans will recognize is the opening song; after a disastrous misadventure with Madonna in the previous film (a project for which Arnold himself criticized the lack of any decent theme in the song to interpolate into the score), the composer was directly involved with creation and execution of "You Know My Name." Collaborating with him was the song's performer, Chris Cornell (formerly of Soundgarden and Audioslave), and while his vocals may not suit the song's romantic sways as well as a female vocalist might have succeeded, it's a more enjoyable song than many of the ones during the Brosnan era of the character. A tasteful orchestral presence would unfortunately be swallowed up a bit by the electric elements, though the song's structure has enough interesting interaction between its primary theme and chorus interludes for Arnold to have plenty of material to quote throughout his score. Those quotations are very numerous and varied greatly in tone throughout the score, giving Casino Royale a distinct personality not heard with such effectiveness since Tomorrow Never Dies.

Aside from the Monty Norman material, Arnold coins two additional themes for the film, one representing each of the women in the story. The Solange theme for the ill-fated fling in the Bahamas, is short-lived but notable. Her representation is held understandably brief from her introduction in "Solange" to her sulking during a card game in "Trip Aces." Playing a substantially larger role is Bond's treasury partner, Vesper Lynd, whose theme is the basis for several cues ranging from the remorseful piano in "Vesper" (the shower scene) to the romantic highlight of "City of Lovers" for John Barry strings of yesteryear. Her material, along with the title theme, contribute to several Barry-like moments of swelling string romance specifically for introductory aerial shots of the various locations in the film, including the aforementioned Venice shot and glorious title theme renditions for "I'm the Money" (the train) and "Aston Montenegro." The straight action cues also make liberal use of the title theme, including both the film's two major chase sequences. Early in "African Rundown," Arnold graces the outrageously staged construction site chase with full brass performances of the theme over a bed of live drum work (as opposed to Arnold's usual pad sound you hear elsewhere in the score) and slashing upper-range metallics from Tomorrow Never Dies's motorcycle chase cue, though it should be noted that the percussion isn't overbearing here as it has been in his two previous efforts for the franchise. The extended "Miami International" airport chase cue is notable for its one venture back into the old days of mega-technology awe; at about 7 minutes into the cue, the introduction of a new jumbo jet liner --the target of the terrorists in the film-- is given a lavish, sweeping camera angle that Arnold indulges with Casino Royale's only over-the-top Stargate-style gong hits and brass grandeur. Otherwise, while these two action sequences have been strongly praised, they won't impress as much as some of Arnold's other music for the franchise. The absence of obnoxious electronics in the latter track is welcomed; a tasefully mixed electric guitar for the final minutes of the cue is an effective compromise.

Other action cues are a tad more anonymous, though "The End of an Aston Martin" features a classy brass performance of the title theme before its abruptly dissonant end. Another car sequence is far flashier; as Bond is sent on his first mission as 007, the Bahamas are greeted in "Blunt Instrument" with an ultra-cool percussive and brass performance of the underlying Monte Norman theme with the Casino Royale song theme used as counterpoint. Arnold has concocted these transitional cues well since "Welcome to Baku" in The World is Not Enough, and in this case, he uses the opportunity to give the song's theme and instrumentation its most prominent placement in the film. The concept of utilizing a wildly cool version of the main theme for alluring shots of new warm-weather locations goes all the way back to Barry's Moonraker, though for Casino Royale the wickedly enticing performance comes with Bond at the wheel of a Ford concept car. This curious product placement somewhat defeats the coolness of the cue in the film (it's a head-scratcher until you think about Bond having to work his way up in the world), and makes you wonder if the cue was meant for the same kind of comedic chuckle that you get if you saw Bond meandering along the Bahamas in an Explorer or Crown Victoria (veteran Ford models that are the subject of some impressive destruction later in the film). The incorporation of the favorite Monte Normal theme is handled well by Arnold, too. Its placement is just as well planted as Ford's cars in the film. As mentioned before, it receives its kick-ass, juvenile "coming of age" performance as Bond first receives his license in "Blunt Instrument." Then, as Bond is finally properly dressed for his character in "Dinner Jackets," we hear a more confident electric bass-driven version of the theme (once again with tasteful use of the title theme as counterpoint) for a somewhat amusing scene. As Bond proves victorious at cards in "Bond Wins it All," another combination of the Norman and title themes whispers with a sense of relief.

Ratings Icon
Average: 3.65 Stars
***** 430 5 Stars
**** 455 4 Stars
*** 330 3 Stars
** 143 2 Stars
* 107 1 Stars
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Mitchell Kyler Martin - May 1, 2016, at 9:14 p.m.
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Easily...   Expand >>
SolarisLem - November 26, 2007, at 4:50 a.m.
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FULL score available   Expand >>
Jay - June 5, 2007, at 2:58 p.m.
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Ultimate Soundtrack CD package   Expand >>
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Film/Album Order for Casino Royal   Expand >>
Corey Caudill - December 25, 2006, at 9:28 a.m.
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Alternate review of Casino Royale at Movie Music UK
Jonathan Broxton - December 10, 2006, at 5:12 p.m.
1 comment  (2118 views)

Track Listings Icon
Audio Samples   ▼
Commercial Score Album: Tracks   ▼Total Time: 74:07
• 1. African Rundown (6:52)
• 2. Nothing Sinister (1:27)
• 3. Unauthorised Access (1:08)
• 4. Blunt Instrument (2:22)
• 5. CCTV (1:30)
• 6. Solange (0:59)
• 7. Trip Aces (2:06)
• 8. Miami International (12:43)
• 9. I'm the Money (0:27)
• 10. Aston Montenegro (1:03)
• 11. Dinner Jackets (1:52)
• 12. The Tell (3:23)
• 13. Stairwell Fight (4:12)
• 14. Vesper (1:44)
• 15. Bond Loses It All (3:56)
• 16. Dirty Martini (3:49)
• 17. Bond Wins It All (4:32)
• 18. The End of an Aston Martin (1:30)
• 19. The Bad Die Young (1:18)
• 20. City of Lovers (3:30)
• 21. The Switch (5:07)
• 22. Fall of a House in Venice (1:53)
• 23. Death of Vesper (2:50)
• 24. The Bitch is Dead (1:05)
• 25. The Name's Bond... James Bond (2:49)
iTunes Complete Score: Tracks   ▼Total Time: 87:20

Notes Icon
The inserts include no extra information about the score or film.
Copyright © 2006-2021, Filmtracks Publications. All rights reserved.
The reviews and other textual content contained on the site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten
or redistributed without the prior written authority of Christian Clemmensen at Filmtracks Publications. All artwork and sound clips from Casino Royale are Copyright © 2006, Sony Classical, Universal/Polydor and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 12/1/06 (and not updated significantly since).
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