It's 1649: Mazarin hires the impoverished D'Artagnan to find the other musketeers: Cromwell has overthrown the English king, so Mazarin fears revolt, particularly from the popular Beaufort.... See full summary »
The story of Louis XIV of France and his attempts to keep his identical twin brother Philippe imprisoned away from sight and knowledge of the public, and Philippe's rescue by the aging ... See full summary »
The hot-headed young D'Artagnan along with three former legendary but now down on their luck Musketeers must unite and defeat a beautiful double agent and her villainous employer from seizing the French throne and engulfing Europe in war.
Paul W.S. Anderson
After the murder of her lover Caesar, Egypt's queen Cleopatra needs a new ally. She seduces his probable successor Marc Antony. This develops into real love and slowly leads to a war with the other possible successor - Octavius.
The growing ambition of Julius Caesar is a source of major concern to his close friend Brutus. Cassius persuades him to participate in his plot to assassinate Caesar but they have both ... See full summary »
The young D'Artagnan arrives in Paris with dreams of becoming a king's musketeer. He meets and quarrels with three men, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, each of whom challenges him to a duel. D'Artagnan finds out they are musketeers and is invited to join them in their efforts to oppose Cardinal Richelieu, who wishes to increase his already considerable power over the king. D'Artagnan must also juggle affairs with the charming Constance Bonancieux and the passionate Lady De Winter, a secret agent for the cardinal. Written by
Eric Sorensen <Eric_Sorensen@fc.mcps.k12.md.us>
The stunt people were terrified of Oliver Reed, due to his sheer ferocity when it came to fight scenes. He would often leap in without rehearsing. It got to the point where they would draw lots to see who would face him. Christopher Lee recalled, "I remember during a fight scene he came at me with both hands on the sword, like an axe, and I parried it and stopped totally. I said, "I think we'd better get the routine right". Then I said to Oliver, "Do you remember who taught you how to use a sword?" He said, "You did". And I said, don't you forget it". You see, I made The Devil-Ship Pirates (1964) with him for Hammer and he was a bit of a menace in that, quite frankly. People leapt out of the way when he had a fight, because he went at it absolutely flat out". See more »
When Constance and Milady fight, Constance throws at Milady some green fruit which spoils Milady's dress; in the next scene where they fight, the dress is immaculate. See more »
Duke of Buckingham:
[watching a laundress clean a shirt on her bare leg]
I shall wear my shirts in future with more respect!
See more »
This film (and its companion piece The Four Musketeers) is the finest adaptation of the Dumas classic. It perfectly captures the blend of romance, adventure, and comedy inherent in the novel. There is some modification for modern viewers, but the spirit and attitude of the era is preserved.
Michael York gives one of his best performances as the young, naive D'Artagnan. He appears to be a bit of a bumbling idiot at first; but, one soon learns that a keen brain lies behind that bumbling exterior. This portrayal was criticized by another filmmaker, who adapted another of Dumas' tales. Judging by how far that director strayed from Dumas, it's understandable how he missed noting that Dumas portrayed D'Artagnan in the same manner at the beginning of the novel. D'Artagnan grows with his experiences and becomes a leader of men by the end of the novel; one who has confounded Cardinal Richelieu at every turn and preserved the honor of his Queen and country.
Oliver Reed was perfectly cast as Athos, the melancholy drunkard. Athos is a man who has endured great pain and betrayal in his life and finds his only pleasure in drinking and brawling. He is the wise counsel to the young D'Artagnan, and the mysterious side to the Musketeer triangle.
Frank Finlay, a wonderful character actor, brings a wonderful, arrogant bluster to Porthos; a gentleman, a braggart, and a fool. Finlay also has a nice turn as the jeweler O'Reilly, showcasing his versatility.
Richard Chamberlain is Aramis, the future priest and great lover. Aramis gives an air of spiritual devotion, while romancing his mistresses. Like many clergy of the upper classes, he sees no conflict in these attitudes, or his profession as a soldier. Chamberlain brings great subtlety to Aramis. His part is not as big as the other two, but he says much with body language and attitude. He more than holds his own with the stage-trained Brits.
Charlton Heston brings a deep menace to Richelieu, quite the opposite of his previous heroes. He shows the devious nature of the Cardinal, and the intelligence of a man who knows he has lost, but will have other battles down the line.
Faye Dunaway is the beautiful and vicious Milady. She is the deadliest of D'Artagnan's adversaries; she charms with her beauty and grace, as she prepares her dagger unseen.
Christopher Lee is D'Artagnan's rival, Rochefort. Lee is always good, even when the film isn't. Luckily, this film is up to his abilities. His cool demeanor is backed by a strong sword arm.
The cast is rounded out by fine character performances from Roy Kinnear as Planchet, Jean-Pierre Cassel as King Louis XIII, Geraldine Chaplain as Anne of Austria, and Spike Milligan as M. Bonacieux. Raquel Welch gives a surprisingly deft turn in the comic role of Constance.
There is plenty of action, romance, drama, and fun for fans of each. The sum of those parts results in a classic that outshines all other attempts at Dumas. It is a swashbuckler to rival any Errol Flynn movie, a romance equal to a Merchant-Ivory production, and a comedy to rival Monty Python.
Forget Gene Kelly, the Ritz Brothers, and Charlie Sheen and company. These are the true Musketeers.
50 of 54 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?