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King Richard and the Crusaders (1954)

Approved | | Adventure, History, Romance | 7 August 1954 (USA)
While leading the Third Crusade, King Richard the Lionheart (George Sanders) battles treachery in his own camp as well as the Saracens and their charismatic leader Emir Hderim Sultan Saladin (Sir Rex Harrison).

Director:

David Butler

Writers:

Walter Scott (novel) (as Sir Walter Scott), John Twist (screen play by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rex Harrison ... Emir Hderim Sultan Saladin
Virginia Mayo ... Lady Edith Plantagenet
George Sanders ... King Richard I
Laurence Harvey ... Sir Kenneth of Huntington
Robert Douglas ... Sir Giles Amaury
Michael Pate ... Conrad, Marquis of Montferrat
Paula Raymond ... Queen Berengaria
Lester Matthews ... Archbishop of Tyre / Narrator
Anthony Eustrel ... Baron De Vaux
Henry Corden ... King Philip of France
Wilton Graff ... Duke Leopold of Austria
Nejla Ates ... Moorish Dancing Girl
Nick Cravat ... Nectobanus
Leslie Bradley ... Castelaine Captain
Bruce Lester ... Castelaine
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Storyline

In 1191, King Richard the Lionheart, along with several other European monarchs, is in the Holy Land intent on retaking Jerusalem from the Saracens. There is much infighting and outright treachery in the European encampment however. Two nobles in particular, Sir Giles Amaury (Robert Douglas) and Conrad, Marquis of Montferrat (Michael Pate), want to eliminate the English King and attempt to have him assassinated. Severely wounded and on his death bed, Richard is brought back to health by a Saracen doctor recruited by one of his loyal knights, Sir Kenneth of the Leopard (Laurence Harvey). The King recovers from his wounds but when he hears that Sir Lawrence wishes to marry Lady Edith Plantagenet (Virginia Mayo), the knight is banished only to be taken in by the very doctor who treated the King and who has an altogether different identity. Written by rodmch

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Theirs was the mightiest challenge of them all! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

7 August 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Talisman See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm magnetic prints) (RCA Sound System)| Mono (Perspecta Sound encoding) (35 mm optical prints)

Color:

Color (WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was Warner Brothers' answer to the hugely popular MGM adaptation of another Sir Walter Scott medieval era novel, Ivanhoe (1952), which had taken in seven million dollars at the box-office.Though even with the added attraction of the new CinemaScope format, this adaptation of The Talisman did not perform as well. See more »

Goofs

During the joust scene, in the first pass the combattants correctly gallop with the central barrier on their left (shielded) side. In the second pass, they wrongly gallop with the barrier on their unshielded side. See more »

Quotes

Sir Kenneth: In the desert no man meets a friend.
See more »

Connections

Version of Richard the Lion-Hearted (1923) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Spectacular and shimmer adventure set in Crusades time with historical roles as Sultan Saladin and Richard Lion Heart
26 December 2017 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

King Richard landed at Acre on 8 June 1191, along with several other European monarchs , is in the Holy Land intent on retaking Jerusalem from the Saracens . Set in 1191, Holy Land , in which King Richard the Lionhearted (George Sanders) encounters much battle and outright betrayal in the European encampment . Two nobles in particular, Sir Giles Amaury (Robert Douglas) and Conrad of Montferrat (Michael Pate) , want to kill the English king . Severely injured and on his death bed , Richard is brought back to health by a Saracen doctor (Rex Harrison) who has an altogether different identity and being recruited by one of his loyal knights, Sir Kenneth of the Leopard (Laurence Harvey) . The king recovers from injures but other knights attempt to have him assassinated. When he hears that Sir Lawrence wishes to wed Lady Edith Plantagenet (Virginia Mayo) , the knight is banished only to be taken in by the very doctor who treated the king .

This historical film contains epic events , impressive battles , thrills , betrayals , romance and wonderful scenarios in which take place the death clashes in a neverending conquest for the Holy Land . Passable and colorful rendition based on the famous novel "The Talisman" by Sir Walter Scott with screen play by John Twist , including emotional highs and lows . The picture has been criticized for its plodding plot in which emerges a strong rivalry and hate among the Crusaders and Muslims , with several moments of tension where the warriors must survive the crises of desert life , impressive tournaments , jousts , sword-play and human frailty . Acceptable performances from a great main cast as Laurence Harvey , Rex Harrison , George Sanders and the gorgeous Virginia Mayo . And fine support cast such as : Robert Douglas, Michael Pate , Paula Raymond as Queen Berengaria and brief acting by Nick Cravet , Bur Lancaster's usual colleague . It contains an atmospheric and evocative musical score by the classic composer Max Steiner . Glimmer and glamorous cinematography in Technicolor by J. Peverell Marley . The motion picture was lavishly produced by Henry Blanke and middlingly directed by David Butler .

The film is partially based on historical events , the real deeds are the followings : Richard and his forces aided in the capture of Acre, despite the king's serious illness. Eventually Conrad of Montferrat concluded the surrender negotiations with Saladin's forces inside Acre and raised the banners of the kings in the city. Richard quarrelled with Leopold V of Austria over his position within the crusade. Leopold's banner had been raised alongside the English and French standards. This was interpreted as arrogance by both Richard and Philip, as Leopold was a vassal of the Holy Roman Emperor. Richard's men tore the flag down and threw it in the moat of Acre. Leopold left the crusade immediately. Philip also left soon afterwards, in poor health andafter further disputes with Richard over the status of Cyprus and the kingship of Jerusalem. Richard, suddenly, found himself without allies. Richard had kept 2,700 Muslim prisoners as hostages against Saladin fulfilling all the terms of the surrender of the lands around Acre. Philip, before leaving, had entrusted his prisoners to Conrad, but Richard forced him to hand them over to him. Richard feared his forces being bottled up in Acre as he believed his campaign could not advance with the prisoners in train. He therefore ordered all the prisoners executed. He then moved south, defeating Saladin's forces at the Battle of Arsuf 30 miles north of Jaffa on 7 September 1191. Saladin attempted to harass Richard's army into breaking its formation in order to defeat it in detail. Richard maintained his army's defensive formation, however, until the Hospitallers broke ranks to charge the right wing of Saladin's forces. Richard then ordered a general counterattack, which won the battle. Arsuf was an important victory. The Muslim army was not destroyed, despite the considerable casualties it suffered, but it did rout; this was considered shameful by the Muslims and boosted the morale of the Crusaders. In November 1191, following the fall of Jaffa, the Crusader army advanced inland towards Jerusalem. The army then marched to Beit Nuba, only 12 miles from Jerusalem. Muslim morale in Jerusalem was so low that the arrival of the Crusaders would probably have caused the city to fall quickly. However, the weather was appallingly bad, cold with heavy rain and hailstorms; this, combined with the fear that the Crusader army, if it besieged Jerusalem, might be trapped by a relieving force, led to the decision to retreat back to the coast. Richard attempted to negotiate with Saladin, but this was unsuccessful. In the first half of 1192 he and his troops refortified Ascalon.The Crusader army made another advance on Jerusalem, and in June 1192 it came within sight of the city before being forced to retreat once again, this time because of dissension amongst its leaders. In particular, Richard and the majority of the army council wanted to force Saladin to relinquish Jerusalem by attacking the basis of his power through an invasion of Egypt.Richard stated that he would accompany any attack on Jerusalem but only as a simple soldier; he refused to lead the army. Without a united command the army had little choice but to retreat back to the coast. There commenced a period of minor skirmishes with Saladin's forces, punctuated by another defeat in the field for the Ayyubid army at the Battle of Jaffa.Richard knew that both Philip and his own brother John were starting to plot against him, and the morale of Saladin's army had been badly eroded by repeated defeats. However, Saladin insisted on the razing of Ascalon's fortifications, which Richard's men had rebuilt, and a few other points. Richard made one last attempt to strengthen his bargaining position by attempting to invade Egypt-Saladin's chief supply-base-but failed. In the end, time ran out for Richard. He realised that his return could be postponed no longer since both Philip and John were taking advantage of his absence. He and Saladin finally came to a settlement , the terms provided for the destruction of Ascalon's fortifications, allowed Christian pilgrims and merchants access to Jerusalem, and initiated a three-year truce. Richard, being ill with scurvy, left for England on October 9, 1192


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