History is turned on its comic head when, in 10th century England, King Arthur travels the countryside to find knights who will join him at the Round Table in Camelot. Gathering up the men is a tale in itself but after a bit of a party at Camelot, many decide to leave only to be stopped by God who sends them on a quest: to find the Holy Grail. After a series of individual adventures, the knights are reunited but must face a wizard named Tim, killer rabbits and lessons in the use of holy hand grenades. Their quest comes to an end however when the police intervene - just what you would expect in a Monty Python movie.Written by
Michael Palin wrote in his diary, "Graham Chapman ended up being seduced by an elderly Aberdeen gentleman on a fishing holiday. Graham resisted evidently, but was well pissed and woke me about 1 o'clock, banging on my door, saying he was Ethel the Kaiser. On Monday night, he woke me again, and just after I'd dropped off I heard him in his room saying he was Betty Marsden very loudly in a variety of silly ways. On Tuesday night, however, he was kind enough to be content with putting a note under my 'With Best Wishes, Betty Marsden' written on it". See more »
In some shots when the rabbit attacks the knights you can see the string that the rabbit is moving across. See more »
On the Regions 2 and 4 DVD's (Europe and Australasia) release, the end credits are extended to three minutes (rather than 20 seconds) of a black screen with the intermission music. See more »
The UK cinema release in 1975 had edited some of the lines to receive an 'A' certificate. These lines include some of Zoot's texture about the oral sex and the overdubbing of uses of 'Jesus Christ'. It was not till 1996 that the UK video's became completely uncut. See more »
WHAT is the capital of Assyria? I don't know that!
I do know, however, that Monty Python and the Holy Grail is one of the funniest movies ever made. Let's face it, if the Python hadn't showed up in 1969, someone would have created them by now, or the world would be a much sadder place. Alongside Life of Brian, which is the sextet's masterpiece, Holy Grail is an excellent start if you want to get addicted to their surreal humor.
As suggested in the title, the film deals with the Arthurian stories, freely reinterpreted by the Python ensemble: after recruiting his knights, including Sir Lancelot (John Cleese), Sir Robin (Eric Idle), Sir Bedevere (Terry Jones) and Sir Galahad (Michael Palin), King Arthur (Graham Chapman) embarks on a mission from God (also Chapman, voice only though): to seek and find the Holy Grail. No need to say, the journey is going to be perilous, but also hilarious, our heroes doing their "best" to screw everything up.
As in Life of Brian, there are so many good bits choosing just one or two feels reductive and disrespectful, given the material. It's pure comedy gold from start to finish, a non-stop gag marathon: from the mock Scandinavian subtitles in the opening credits to the argument about swallows, from the Killer Rabbit to the Black Knight and the jaw-dropping epilogue, you will keep grinning like never before (if you're unfamiliar with these comedians, that is). Actually, after some serious thinking I can select two particular sequences as particularly memorable: the Knights who say "Ni!" and the Bridge of Death. The rest of the film is ace too, but those two scenes are the ones I can't stop thinking of fondly whenever the movie is mentioned.
Oh, and let's not forget Terry Gilliam's vital contribution: he doesn't appear that much as an actor (his Bridgekeeper is absolute genius, though), but he compensates that with the remarkable animations used to depict part of this epic adventure. Speaking of epic, this picture has one of the most brilliant tag-lines in comedy history, if not film history in general.
Oh yes, the world wouldn't be quite the same without the Monty Python. Even the most miserable person on the planet will laugh like a lunatic after viewing any of their films.
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