7.4/10
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397 user 117 critic

Excalibur (1981)

Trailer
2:30 | Trailer
Merlin the magician helps Arthur Pendragon unite the Britons around the Round Table of Camelot, even as dark forces conspire to tear it apart.

Director:

John Boorman

Writers:

Thomas Malory (book), Rospo Pallenberg (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
2,541 ( 274)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nigel Terry ... King Arthur
Helen Mirren ... Morgana
Nicholas Clay ... Lancelot
Cherie Lunghi ... Guenevere
Paul Geoffrey ... Perceval
Nicol Williamson ... Merlin
Robert Addie ... Mordred
Gabriel Byrne ... Uther Pendragon
Keith Buckley ... Uryens
Katrine Boorman ... Igrayne
Liam Neeson ... Gawain
Corin Redgrave ... Cornwall
Niall O'Brien Niall O'Brien ... Kay
Patrick Stewart ... Leondegrance
Clive Swift ... Ector
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Storyline

The myth of King Arthur (Nigel Terry) brought once again to the screen. Uthur Pendragon (Gabriel Byrne) is given the mystical sword Excalibur by the wizard Merlin. At his death, Uthur buries the sword into a stone, and the next man that can pull it out will be King of England. Several years later, Arthur, Uthur's bastard son, draws Excalibur and becomes King. Guided by Merlin, Arthur marries Guenevere (Cherie Lunghi) and gathers the Knights of the Round Table. Arthur's evil half-sister Morgana (Dame Helen Mirren) sires a son with him, who may prove to be his downfall. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Forged by a god. Foretold by a wizard. Found by a King. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The king whose land becomes a wasteland as he looses his own health in the Arthurian narratives is the so-called "Wounded King" , or the more famous "Fisher King". The screenwriters chose to identify them both with Arthur himself. See more »

Goofs

Full plate metal armor was not invented until about the year 1350, and not used in Europe until much later than that. Numerous such anachronisms (use of stirrups, weaponry) can be excused as being faithful to Sir Thomas Malory's book, which followed 15th-century conventions of making historical characters behave in a contemporary way. See more »

Quotes

Arthur: Rise, Father, please. I was your son before I became your king; if I am King.
Sir Ector: You are king, Arthur; the more so because you are not my son, and I am not your father.
Arthur: Not my father? Then Kay is not my brother?
Sir Ector: Merlin the magician brought you to me when you were newly born, and bade me raise you as my own. At first, I did so because I feared Merlin, but later because I loved you.
Arthur: Who is my true father?
Sir Ector: Only Merlin can tell you that.
Arthur: And who is Merlin?
Merlin: [enters suddenly from the forest] I... am the Merlin.
Arthur: ...
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

The movie was originally put into theatrical release in 1981 as an R-rated film in the USA. Later there was an announcement of a PG rated version, but it was not widely released. The original R-rated cut is 140 minutes. Most home video versions are the R-rated version, but TV and movie channels show the PG cut, making the movie 119 minutes. The R-rated version features about 21 more minutes of graphic sex and violence. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Xcalibur: The Lords of Sex 2 (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude to Parsifal
by Richard Wagner
Specially recorded by London Philharmonic Orchestra (as The London Philharmonic Orchestra)
Conducted by Norman Del Mar
See more »

User Reviews

 
The Best Version of the Legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table ever Made
10 February 2019 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

"Excalibur" is the best version of the Legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table ever made by the cinema industry. John Boorman´s version has inconsistencies with the legend but it is a perfect blend of fantasy, drama and adventure. Visually stunning, it is worthwhile watching this film in Blu-Ray. The magnificent soundtrack is supported by music of Wagner and Carl Orff. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "Excalibur"


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 April 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Knights See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,519,706, 12 April 1981

Gross USA:

$34,967,437

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$34,971,136
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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