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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>
This film, and its sequel (filmed concurrently) is by far the best movie version of the Dumas novel ever produced. The cast is excellent. The sets and costumes are marvelous. The swordplay (and there is much) is possible some of the most realistic ever filmed. And it's the only Musketeer movie I am aware of in which the Musketeers actually use muskets. Authenticity seems to have been very important to the producers, as well as staying true to the novel.
Sadly a film like this wouldn't be made these days. First off the fighting would be "punched-up" with a lot of wire work. And of course Hollywood would change the story to eliminate much of the "sleeping around" characters do (today's movie heroes in this type of movie aren't usually sexually active). They would also provide some creative story editing so that a certain character who dies in the novel would survive so as to supply the requisite happy ending. Fortunately for us this version does not suffer that kind of revisionism.
If you're a fan of Dumas or just looking for a fun film with lots of realistic sword fighting then you won't want to miss this.
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