Thursday, November 04, 2004

Le Vive d'Arthur

To properly enjoy King Arthur, what is really necessary is that you must have no knowledge of, or at least little interest in the Arthurian legend. Perhaps familiarity with Dark Age/ end of Roman Empire history may also be of some help.

The movie has a take on Arthur quite different from the legend, and is set in the last days of the Roman Empire in Britain, when the Romans were planning to withdraw from Britain, and the native populace was threatened by barbarian incursions from the north of Hadrian's Wall. The movie has replaced the actual Scottish invaders with Saxons, but that is a small matter.

However, historical authenticity does not necessarily a good movie make. Clive Owen looks like he took acting classes from Suniel Shetty for the movie, and I dont know what the hell Keira Knightly is doing in it. Her role as Guinevere is as artificially enhanced (for the masala element no doubt) as the role of Arwen in LOTR. When all the other characters complain of the cold, inspite of layers of clothing, Guinevere is dressed for a summer evening out in Majorca. And the warrior-princess thingy is completely uncalled for.

The plot, while enjoyable in a whistle-at-the-action-scenes kinda way is very cliched. Some scenes are very cliched (especially the one where the traitor is killed, pure Hidi movie that) and you can predict which characters die in the end. There are also some very funny dialogues, if you like that in your historical/acxtion flick. The climactic battle (the battle of Mount Badon, a true historic event) is very cool though, as is the one in the beginning.

My Recomendation: Watch if you like action, or are if you are a history buff. If you have a romantic notion of medieval knights running around the place, jousting at the drop of a hat (or gauntlet), saving damsels in distress and making quests, forget it.

Ps: Pardon my French.


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