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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

Now forever infamous for the line "War War war, that's all you ever think about Dick Plantagenet!" See more »

Goofs

Near the beginning of the film, Lawrence Harvey's character is shot with an arrow full in the chest by Rex Harrison's character, knocking him off his horse. Yet Harvey gets up and spends the rest of the movie with no sign of a wound, nor any mention of one. See more »

Quotes

King Richard I: Go squat on your Alps!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Tsukiyo no kasa (1955) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Warriors Of Christendom, The Warriors Of Islam
28 September 2009 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Somehow King Richard And The Crusaders made the Medved list of the 50 Worst films of all time. I'm not saying it's Citizen Kane, but I've seen far worse. And until The Lion In Winter and Robin and Marian, we have never been given a true picture of King Richard I of England.

George Sanders who also in his career played King Charles II, a monarch of a far different temperament than Richard is in the title role. The film is based on the Sir Walter Scott novel, The Talisman and takes place in the Middle East during the Crusades.

As in the DeMille epic The Crusades which this bear a faint resemblance, The Lion Hearted King is beset with lots of problems, not all of them caused by the Syrian warrior King Saladin whom he faces in the field. Duke Leopold of Austria and Philip Augustus of France question his leadership of all the Christian nations, his brother Prince John is looking to seize his throne back home and right in camp, he's got a couple of fifth columnists in Robert Douglas and Michael Pate.

Pate and Douglas put in action an assassination attempt in which Richard is only wounded by a captured Saracen arrow. Richard's loyal retainer a Scot knight played by Laurence Harvey starts hunting up the assassins. But in the mean time, a truce of sorts is called as Saladin, hearing of Richard's attempt sends his personal physician played by Rex Harrison.

There is a romantic subplot going here with Harvey and a cousin of Richard's played by Virginia Mayo. Richard likes Harvey enough, but not to marry into the royal family, especially when as a royal princess, Mayo can be married off for alliance purposes.

Sir Walter Scott was one of those authors in the 19th century who cleaned up the Middle Ages quite a bit and invested those bloody times with a romantic aura. He was never more effective in doing this than in his more well known work Ivanhoe. In fact Ivanhoe is almost a sequel of this film as it deals with the capture of Richard by Duke Leopold on the way back to England after the action in this film is concluded and the ransom for Richard demanded and paid.

George Sanders and Robert Douglas were both in the screen version of Ivanhoe that MGM did two years before Warner Brothers did this film. Ivanhoe is a much better film, yet King Richard And The Crusaders does hold its own.

When the Medveds wrote that 50 worst film book they cited a line that Virginia Mayo says which is "war, war that's all you ever think about Dick Plantagenet". In point of fact that was the thing uppermost in that very bloodthirsty man's mind. More truth than humor there.

And you won't get much truth from King Richard And The Crusaders. Still it's not as bad a film as the Medveds would have you believe.


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