Entertainment

Middle-Aged Bond Girl

How my obsession with 'Casino Royale' taught me the value of keeping secrets

A few years ago, I sat in the back row of the AMC Burbank 16 Theaters—the row traditionally reserved for horny teenagers and perverts (depending on the film). Although I wasn't a horny teenager or a pervert, I felt like both.

I was there to see "Casino Royale," the new James Bond with Daniel Craig. I'd already seen it six times. This would be the seventh and I was running out of theaters. I refused to go to the same place twice because HUMILIATION. What if the popcorn and candy kids recognized me?

"Hey, Scott, look at that pervy old lady. She was here twice last week alone LOL and she's back again!"

So, that day I was in Burbank. The week before, at the Glendale 4. And the week before that, at The Vista Theater in Silver Lake. The first time I saw the film, it was at the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood with my husband and daughter. It blew my mind.

I loved the Bond films when I was a kid but it wasn't until I read the books in my 20s that I realized how badly adapted the Bond character was. James Bond wasn't this sleazoid, cliché-cracking womanizer with major stock in Brill Cream and sophomoric gadgets. He wasn't movie-star handsome or slick. After 30 years, Hollywood finally got it right. Not only is Daniel Craig the perfect Bond, gone is the "dumb Bond girl." Eva Green's Vesper Lynd has smarts.

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Even the titles were rebooted—no more floating, naked women silhouetted against blobby, lava lamp graphics and cheesy lounge music. Bond is now the sex symbol, not some vacant female character whose name is slang for women's outer genitalia. When he rises from the ocean, tanned and dripping wet and stares at me, I mean, points those icy blue eyes somewhere in the middle distance ... I can't even.

Anyway, not only did I see "Casino Royale" seven times, I spent over $200 if you count popcorn, gas and parking. When I wasn't schlepping to some distant movie theater, I watched (and rewatched) the trailers for the film on my computer while logged into IMDB as Adslut and in a heated discussion with Bondbabe about whether Bond had tears in his eyes when he told M, "The bitch is dead." (He did.)

Who does that? What adult woman sees a movie seven times in one month then pores through celebrity websites making comments on threads a mile long? Sure, Daniel Craig is hot but so are a lot of actors. (Tom Hardy OMG.) Plus, I'm a terrible liar. Ask me a question and two seconds later you'll know the amount of my student loan debt—$62,000—and why I don't have a washer and dryer (I grow pot in my laundry room). Yet here I was, telling whoppers about where I spent those lost afternoons.

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I told no one—not my best friend, my sister or my daughter—and definitely not my husband. For the first time in my life, I had a secret. And when my James Bond/Daniel Craig obsession finally ended, as these things do, I had a stunning realization:

I loved having a secret.

It was all mine and no one else's. I always believed that being transparent was a way to showcase my honesty. But I wasn't honoring myself by tossing cherished pieces me to random strangers. Although I always felt terrible afterward, I couldn't stop. I hold myself closer now without guilt and only share what I truly want to share with people who've earned the right to hear it.

The fifth time I saw "Casino Royale," I went with my best friend, Holly. After the film, she said, "Wow, I could see that again." And I said, "Yeah, me too."

I still haven't told anyone about my obsession with Daniel Craig and "Casino Royale." Enough time has gone by where it would make a funny dinner party story. But I'll know when the time is right. I'm careful like that.

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