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The Black Knight (1954)

Approved | | Adventure | 26 August 1954 (UK)
As a blacksmith John can't hope to win the hand of Linet, daughter of the Earl of Yeonil. Off he goes to prove himself a noble knight. He makes himself a suit of armor with a winged chicken... See full summary »



(original screenplay), (additional dialogue) | 1 more credit »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sir Ontzlake (as Andre Morell)
Earl Of Yeonil
Sir Palamides
Major Domo
King Mark
Bill Brandon ...
The Abbot
Basil Appleby ...
Sir Hal
Thomas Moore ...
The Apprentice
Jean Lodge ...
Lady Yeonil
The Woodchopper


As a blacksmith John can't hope to win the hand of Linet, daughter of the Earl of Yeonil. Off he goes to prove himself a noble knight. He makes himself a suit of armor with a winged chicken helmet and runs around fighting for King Arthur as the Black Knight. Evil doings include plots by visiting kings and a Druid sacrificial ceremony at Stonehenge. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

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New excitement ! New thrills ! Alan Ladd's biggest adventure ! See more »




Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

26 August 1954 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

El caballero negro  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Alan Ladd was the biggest box-office attraction in the UK in 1954. See more »


During the conclusive battle scene between the Saracens and Arthurian knights, one Arthurian combatant lies defeated and dead, only to turn his head while the knights rush past him. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: The Earl of Yeonil's Castle. See more »


Remade as Siege of the Saxons (1963) See more »


The Whistling Gypsy
Written by Leo Maguire
Performed by Elton Hayes
See more »

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User Reviews

Treachery In Camelot
13 August 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Having your wife as your agent can carry some advantages I'm sure, but when Sue Carol Ladd made a deal with Warwick Pictures in the United Kingdom for her husband to star, she did not advance his career. In fact this last one, The Black Knight, might have sunk it.

The biggest mistake Alan Ladd and his wife made was leaving Paramount before Shane was released to critical and popular success. Who knows what might have happened had he stayed and the Paramount publicity machine cranked up at Oscar time for him.

The Black Knight was the third film of three that Ladd did for Warwick that were released by Columbia in America. The first one, The Red Beret was a World War II story and Ladd was a Canadian to explain his non-British accent. The second, Hell Below Zero, was a modern story set on a whaling ship and was not bad and he played an American.

But Ladd had no business in The Black Knight, a tale set in the days of King Arthur. Peter Cushing as Sir Palimedes, a knight who's in the Mordred vein, is plotting with Patrick Troughton playing King Mark of Cornwall to overthrow Arthur and return the isle of Britain to the Druid religion.

Ladd's a blacksmith, hopelessly in love with Lady Patricia Medina whose father he is in service to. Upward mobility isn't the rule in those days, but it can be done as Ladd's friend and mentor Andre Morrell says. Go into knight training and incidentally find out what's behind all these Viking raids were having.

Poor Alan Ladd just doesn't have the requisite image for dueling. Twenty years earlier Tyrone Power, Errol Flynn, or Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. could have handled the role with ease. But Alan Ladd was never meant to be buckling swashes. Lines that sounded natural coming from Errol Flynn sound ridiculous from Ladd.

Director Tay Garnett handles the battle sequences real nice and the rest of the British cast look like they know what they're doing.

At least this was not the worst film Alan Ladd ever did. That was awaiting him in Duel of the Champions.

19 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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