Mads Mikkelsen: 5 Awesome Performances & 5 That Sucked

4. Le Chiffre - Casino Royale (2006)

Casino Royale Le Chiffre

Sometimes Hollywood's lack of imagination pays dividends. On paper, Mikkelsen represents the ideal candidate to play a Bond villain: he has striking looks, intense eyes and a sort of otherworldly gloss that makes him suit particularly complex characters. But choosing him to play Le Chiffre didn't exactly show bravery on the Bond team's part, and he could have simply floated through the performance as a stereotype.

I mean, the character cries blood, for God's sake. He almost belongs in one of the more flamboyant, less entertaining Roger Moore films.

But Mikkelsen's performance is a picture of reservation, despite everything. He's not actually tasked with a great deal to do, but his decisions to dial up the intensity and yet not to go as pantomimey as Robert Carlyle did before him paid dividends. There's even some tangible weakness in there as his perceived immortality crashes down around him at the poker table. And he legitimately deserves to be considered as one of the most memorable Bond villains ever.



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