You may have seen all the Bond movies, but have you really seen ALL the Bond movies?

Barry Nelson (far left) as James Bond and Peter Lorre (far right) as Le Chiffre
Barry Nelson (seated at left) as James Bond and Peter Lorre (seated at right) as Le Chiffre in 1954’s CASINO ROYALE

Casino Royale (1954)
★★☆☆

I’m a longtime Bond fan. Of course I’d seen all the official films, plus Never Say Never Again and 1967’s psychedelic Casino Royale spoof (the latter is one of my favorite movies bar none). There are some weird foreign knock-offs out there that use the James Bond name, like a circa 1965 Bollywood effort, but to my knowledge the only somewhat-official Bond production I had not seen was a 1954 made-for-TV broadcast of Casino Royale. I knew of its existence, that it had been the first on-screen portrayal of the character, and that it had presented “Jimmy” Bond as an American, but I hadn’t sought it out.

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