March 10, 2012

Brother Beats: The Look of Love (Casino Royale)...

There are two songs from Casino Royale, 1967 that we both LOVE.  The first one is The Look of Love by Dusty Springfield; the second is the theme to Casino Royal performed by Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass. The Look of Love was nominated for the Academy Award for best song in 1967. Mireille Mathieu sings the German adaptation. 

Casino Royale is a satire of the James Bond film series and the spy genre, and is loosely based on Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel. The film had mixed reception among critics, some of whom regard it as a baffling, disorganized affair, with critic Roger Ebert branding it "possibly the most indulgent film ever made". While, Andrea LeVasseur called it "a psychedelic, absurd masterpiece"

We love it for the sound and the style. The sets and costumes are a time capsule of the MOD  late 1960s . The rooms and sets – referenced everyone from Verner Panton, Pierre Paulin, Joe Columbo and John Lautner. The costumes and fashions – referenced everyone from Paco Rabanne, Courreges, Pierre Cardin and Ungaro. Ursula Andress is beyond sexy!

The Look of Love by Dusty Springfield. Ursula Andress character is called Vesper Lynd and she is brilliant and sexy in this role – the opening sequence is shot through a man-size aquarium as Vesper takes a seductive walk. The Look of Love was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Song (1967). In 1968 Sérgio Mendes and Brasil '66 reached #4 on Billboard with their version. Dusty Springfield's version was heard again in Austin Powers, which was a spoof of Casino Royale - which in turn was a spoof on the James Bond films.

Peter Sellers and Ursula Andress appear to be channeling moments from an earlier decade. The iconic image (top) by Richard Avedon of the model Sunny Harnett wearing an evening dress by Madame Grès shot in 1954 is a favorite of ours.
(Two of the stars: Peter Sellers and Orson Welles could not stand the sight of each other. They hated each other so much that the actors filmed their shared scenes, separately. A double was used as a stand in while the actors took turns shooting the scene).

A behind the scenes shot of Ursula Andress getting fitted for her feather turban - (filming started in 1966).

"I don't use my body to seduce, no. I just stand there." - Ursula Andress

The main title theme composed by Burt Bacharach, performed by Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass. Growing up this was a song that we would both play over and over again!

The studio approved the film's production budget at $6 million, considered quite a large budget in 1966. However, during filming the project ran into many problems and the shoot ran months over schedule, as well did the costs. When the film was completed it had run twice over its original budget. The final production budget was $12 million, which made it one of the most expensive films made up to that point.

Woody Allen’s character has a naked Daliah Lavi a bit tied up. Love the colors, set design and those wild sculptures behind Allen.
 (Woody Allen was allegedly surprised with all the money being spent on the production of the film. While lounging at an expensive hotel waiting for the filmmakers to call him on set for his scenes, Allen wrote a friend, "The film will probably make a mint. Not money, but a single peppermint.")

The German version of the film, features a German adaptation of The Look of Love sung by Mireille Mathieu. In-order to make room for her credit in the film titles, Jean Paul Belmondo's credit was removed in the German language version. Interesting version – the footage on the trailer is worth it!

We love a good beat!
- Doug and Gene

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