10 hotels featured in James Bond movies
Wadjda out of four stars Rated: PG for thematic elements, mild language and smoking. Theater: Edina The captivating Wadjda is the first feature from Haifaa Al-Mansour, and the first Saudi film directed by a woman. Most important, it is an unqualified delight, a sharp, insightful comedy that subversively explores womens place in Islamic society. Spunky tomboy Wadjda expresses her personality in the very first shots, rocking high-top sneakers with purple laces under her ankle-length school tunic. She listens to pop music in her bedroom, papers the walls with clippings from celebrity magazines, and plays with the neighbors son. When he beats her in a bike-vs.-foot race, she vows to get wheels of her own, which is considered an offense against virtue. Waad Mohammed sparkles as the cheeky troublemaker, who enters a Quran study competition in hopes of using the prize money for her bicycle. Reem Abdullah is touching as Wadjdas traditionalist mother, housebound unless a hired driver is available, and worried that her husband is about to take a second wife. Al-Mansours warmhearted humanism and progressive political agenda are a perfect fit. Even the Quran passages Wadjda recites slyly chide the forces of religious repression. The final optimistic images suggest that todays headstrong little girls may reshape and redefine Saudi society. Wadjda is an endearing, uplifting delight.C.C. When Comedy Went to School out of four stars Unrated but suitable for all.
But the film, co-produced by Tyler Perry and Oprah, was an excellent platform for Gabourey Sidibe’s acting. “Drive” The neo-noir novel is great, but could get lost among a sea of other well-written pulp fiction books. The movie, on the other hand, is unique: It’s at once campy and subtly touching. And, okay, it’s also Ryan Gosling at his best. “Silence of the Lambs” This novel was critically acclaimed — Roald Dahl called it, “subtle, horrific and splendid, the best book I have read in a long time,” and David Foster Wallace used to assign it to his students. But Hannibal’s eeriness is simply better conveyed on film. “The Godfather” Mario Puzo co-wrote the film version of his book, so he shouldn’t take offense to this one. The movie is better if only because of the impact it’s had on the way Americans view their individual nationalities and ethnicities. It doesn’t hurt that it’s widely considered one of the greatest films of all time, either. “Fight Club” Aside from the Hollywoodification of the story’s ending, the movie stays true to the mood and dialogue of the book. Sure, the romantic ending may be a little sappy, but, oddly enough, author Chuck Palahniuk prefers it, stating that the story is about a man reaching a point where he can commit to a relationship. “Hugo” The inventive children’s story of a boy and his automaton is brought to life by Martin Scorsese, who made the film so that his young daughter could finally experience his work.
In “Casino Royale,” Bond girl Solange is seen arriving at the resort before checking into Villa 1085. The property appears throughout the film: Bond is seen walking through the reception area, playing poker in the library and exploring the Versailles-themed gardens. Daniel Craig’s James Bond moors his yacht at this hotel’s private marina in “Casino Royale.” The crew took over the Cipriani’s restaurant to film this scene, and parts of the terrace appear throughout. In “GoldenEye” — the first James Bond film not based on Ian Fleming’s novels — this London hotel doubles as St. Petersburg’s Grand Hotel Europe. The Langham was constructed in 1865 and is one of London’s first purpose-built hotels. Bond scrambles over the iconic, globe-adorned rooftop of the Atlantic Kempinski in “Tomorrow Never Dies,” and the hotel’s exterior also appears throughout the film. Played by Pierce Brosnan, Bond stays in the hotel’s Atlantic Suite and several scenes were filmed there. This Indian hotel doubles as Octopussy’s lair in the film of the same name, with the dining room, terrace and hotel barge appearing in various scenes. The hotel’s lily pond is also featured in the film, when Bond girl Octopussy is shown enjoying a naked swim. In “Goldfinger,” this enormous hotel appears in the sweeping aerial shot which follows the opening credits. In the film, Bond girl Jill Masterton is found dead at the hotel after being covered in gold paint. In “The Spy Who Loved Me,” Roger Moore’s Bond seduces KGB agent Amasova in the piano bar, which doubles as Bond’s hotel room.