More in-depth film festival coverage than any other website!
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Advertisement

Overall Rating
3.59

Awesome36.6%
Worth A Look: 26.29%
Average: 13.92%
Pretty Bad: 6.19%
Total Crap: 17.01%

8 reviews, 146 user ratings


Latest Reviews

When Animals Dream by Jay Seaver

Creep Behind the Camera, The by Jay Seaver

Fake, The by Jay Seaver

Guardians of the Galaxy by Lybarger

Guardians of the Galaxy by Brett Gallman

One I Love, The by Jay Seaver

Get On Up by Peter Sobczynski

Guardians of the Galaxy by Peter Sobczynski

Snow White Murder Case, The by Jay Seaver

At the Devil's Door by Jay Seaver

subscribe to this feed


Knight's Tale, A
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by Rob Gonsalves

"Mead-and-pizza flick; good drive-in fun."
4 stars

Surprise, surprise: 'A Knight's Tale,' after weeks of obnoxious hype (if you weren't sick of "We Will Rock You" before, you probably are now), turns out to be not bad and sometimes even pretty damn good .

Not that A Knight's Tale will bear much comparison to The Canterbury Tales or even Excalibur. Writer-director Brian Helgeland, who co-wrote the Oscar-winning L.A. Confidential and directed 1999's Payback, has made a cheerful beer-and-pizza movie that maybe deserves to rank alongside George Romero's Knightriders as well as some of the sword-and-sorcery movies of the '80s (Conan the Barbarian, The Sword and the Sorcerer, The Beastmaster) whose chief charm was that they didn't even pretend to be "accurate." A Knight's Tale is unabashedly contemporary in tone and spirit, and why the hell not? It's not as if Hollywood has never done that before. If you want the real deal, go read Chaucer in the original Middle English (I have; he makes Eminem look like Mr. Rogers).

Heath Ledger acquits himself competently enough as William Thatcher, a peasant's son who works as a squire for an over-the-hill knight (Helgeland's opening text actually calls him "over-the-hill," a fair indication of what kind of movie this is; it also refers to jousting "fans"). When the knight expires, William dons his armor and, with the help of fellow groundlings Roland (Mark Addy, making the same immediate tubby-regular-guy connection with the audience that he made in The Full Monty) and Wat (Alan Tudyk, going for Johnny Rotten in look and attitude), passes himself off as "Sir Ulrich von Lichtenstein of Gelderland" despite having no particular Germanic accent. Securing fake "patents of nobility" from an on-his-uppers Chaucer himself (the scene-stealing Paul Bettany, who bears more than a little resemblance to Helgeland), William is ready to joust.

Ah, yes, the jousting. Playing to medieval-era arena crowds (all they need is a rainbow-head John 3:16 guy in the stands), the jousting competitions hinge on breaking your lance against another guy's armor or knocking him off his horse. The jousts become funny in their very repetition (smash! back for another pass! smash!) and phallic nature (the guy with the truest stick wins). The horses thundering along, the knights with their lances poised -- great stuff, say I; unless you're the sort who haunts renaissance faires (and I don't blame you if you're not), you don't see this very often, and the low-tech spectacle of men bashing each other with big poles is absurdly gratifying.

William's main competition on the field is the jerky Rufus Sewell, whose imperious countenance has doomed him to play treacherous wankers forevermore. William's competition off the field is his own heart, which wants to hand itself to the shiny lady-in-waiting Jocelyn. As played by Shannyn Sossamon, Jocelyn mainly beams or pouts like a medieval Denise Richards; I would've rather seen William go for his trusty blacksmith Kate (Laura Fraser), who's meant to be a tomboy, though the make-up and wardrobe departments amusingly forget to make her tomboyish.

There's a good deal of goofing around (Helgeland is deft at warming us to the four buddies via William Goldman-esque badinage and snarky asides), as well as a needless subplot involving William's dad, which comes with its own laborious flashbacks; I'm convinced Helgeland could've had a fast, streamlined drive-in movie had he deleted the Dad material, which adds little except minutes. Still, A Knight's Tale is jolly enough armor-clanging, and, yes, the rock songs on the soundtrack do enhance the fun. The use of "We Will Rock You" at the beginning suggests that, for all its mainstream exertions, A Knight's Tale is actually something of an experimental melding of old and new.

By the time Helgeland gets to a dance sequence set to David Bowie's "Golden Years," you've either accepted the musical choices or left the building in disgust. I was still there, and happy.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=4627&reviewer=416
originally posted: 04/29/07 12:54:49
[printer] printer-friendly format  

User Comments

2/18/14 gtopsntv USA 2 stars
12/21/08 Valerie Very entertaining, and doesn't try to be something its not. 5 stars
10/08/08 Shaun Wallner This film is hilarious!! 5 stars
9/23/08 PAUL SHORTT PULSES WITH CHARM AND AN IRRESISTIBLE YOUTHFUL ENERGY 3 stars
6/17/08 sugar I thoought the movie was Boring...i nearly fell asleep watching it 1 stars
8/10/07 Hello Stranger alot of anachronisms. sometimes it crap, sometimes its good. ledger is a great actor here 3 stars
7/22/07 gr117 If loving this movie is wrong, then I don't want to be right. 5 stars
3/27/07 samantha great movie! Heath Ledger looks his hottest in this movie! 5 stars
1/08/07 Nagendran Not Historical. But Entertaining. 4 stars
12/16/06 Michele fun 5 stars
11/22/06 georgia what a lot of rubbish you switch to sky1 watch it for 2 seconds and your bored and in a bad 1 stars
11/13/06 bond, james bond sucks and them some- you have to see some guy's ass 1 stars
10/14/06 hbk the funniest medieval film ever.And there's a good story line as well i'm glad it works out 5 stars
10/10/06 India insultingly, juvenile. queen in the 14th century? 1 stars
9/27/06 Edward Shandis I'm still lost. This movie makes no sense and the actors suck!!! 1 stars
8/19/06 Beau very comical storyline that turns into an action packed love story, clever combination 4 stars
8/09/06 Dragon The Artist A comlplete abomination& desicration to Queen, the rock band that will rock you! 1 stars
7/09/06 Me Lovely film, Heath is incredible. 5 stars
6/16/06 Michele loved it, fun 5 stars
6/03/06 jeanne In what twisted universe is Rufus Sewell the booby prize? The man's scorching hot! 3 stars
4/06/06 Kyah awesome heathe ledger is so hot! 5 stars
9/15/05 Dan Good movie! 5 stars
8/24/05 ES Fun and witty, good action and soundtrack, but not your traditional medieval fare 4 stars
3/13/05 Ronin It's one of these movies where you yawn after 5 minutes and turn it off after 10. DULL 1 stars
2/05/05 R.W. Welch Not sure how you classify this, but it's entertaining enuff,if you don't mind anachronisms. 3 stars
1/15/05 chritzie its a very fantastic movie! i like it very much... and its very romantic! 5 stars
10/29/04 ODH I thought this movie was going to suck, but I was pleasantly suprised. 4 stars
8/16/04 Rusty Klichowicz Modern crowd behaviour in mediaeval times... Inspired! 5 stars
8/04/04 Jerlie Baruiz its humurous 4 stars
7/29/04 paolo enea I agrre with the efc, it's a great movie 5 stars
4/28/04 Manny Very funny with much historic accuracy. When it is not accurate, it is obvious and funny. 4 stars
3/28/04 Margie it's a fun movie... and if you thought Chaucer was boring, this might lighten your view 4 stars
3/28/04 The More You Know Nobody wins when 2 losers + 2 hotties vie for the privilege to hold Ledger's jock. 1 stars
2/27/04 john i loved this movie 5 stars
1/27/04 joe smith 4 stars
10/08/03 Ingo Entertainment with a twinkle. 4 stars
9/08/03 Gray good parts and bad parts 3 stars
8/26/03 nick It was the best movie of all 5 stars
7/31/03 Nicole The soundtrack was annoying as hell 2 stars
7/22/03 I Would A boring, contrived and predictable. All complete with a shitty Queen soundtrack. 1 stars
7/17/03 Katie Roberts i don't think i could bare 2 watch it again 2 stars
6/08/03 valeria The film was excelent!! 5 stars
4/07/03 Jack Sommersby Laughabe absurdity. 1 stars
12/12/02 Jamie I loved this movie! It was an interesting twist of the medieval times! 5 stars
12/07/02 Kevin I like how a jousting arena appeared in London 1 stars
11/14/02 Adam The best film ever, I love this comedy 5 stars
7/29/02 Jon Since when were random anachronisms funny? That said, Chaucer was fairly amusing... 2 stars
6/30/02 Smoogles Different and interesting, a step away from the usual sequel/prequel crap 5 stars
6/29/02 Drew A fun film, that's all it is and all it was trying to be 4 stars
6/21/02 Bart Impossible to watch 1 stars
6/05/02 I'm in (L) with a Jedi wats rong wif all u peeps, jesus this woz boring! shanks gracy lionheart, i understand u!!! 1 stars
2/24/02 Peter Anderson Excellent, worth the rent 5 stars
1/27/02 Berat Kosovo Shannyn is too beatiful i like her too much i could not sleep for two days after i saw her. 5 stars
12/27/01 Wreddg Lovin' that film. Yeah yeah, Shannyn Sossamon was so HOTT in that film.. dammn. 5 stars
12/14/01 DJ I loved it. SHANNON SOSSAMON WAS WONDERFUL. 5 stars
11/12/01 Gracy Lionheart Bad acting, script, and music. Ledger's love interest was awful. An all over UGH!!! 1 stars
10/17/01 JesseL Excellent movie. One of the best. Movie Freek is a moron. 5 stars
10/15/01 JD Sweet movie!! 5 stars
10/04/01 Jess This movie was GREAT!!! the actors were well selected and Heath was magnificent!!! 5 stars
10/01/01 The Bomb 69 mindless fun, I couldn't believe it was more than 2 hours long, very entertaining 5 stars
9/29/01 Minh I love Shannyn Sossamon 5 stars
9/29/01 Phoenix A Knight's Tale is so much fun, that you forget it's over 2 hours. 5 stars
9/24/01 Tamsyn Loved it! It made me laugh and feel great...a movie you walk away from feeling happy! 5 stars
9/17/01 Bri Different, amusing, good time. 5 stars
9/10/01 Matthew Bartley More fun you shake a stick at. Chaucer was great! 4 stars
9/04/01 Babybelle Ye olde fashioned film of yore...rock on !! 4 stars
8/27/01 Al I urge you to see this one. 5 stars
7/29/01 Jennifer Gaissert F-U-N 5 stars
7/25/01 ron20003 I couldn't get into it. 1 stars
7/10/01 Anne I don't know why, but I loved it. The acting raised it to great entertainment. 4 stars
6/25/01 Lara Frazier An Excellent Comedy! 5 stars
6/23/01 Barton Fink This film was okay, but mostly was silly and dumb. Hot girls though. 2 stars
6/19/01 Jameson Triplett This movie created a fun new twist to what could have been only a variation on a theme 4 stars
6/19/01 Bob Fun, entertaining, and highly recommended. 4 stars
6/09/01 Anne This film is great! 5 stars
6/09/01 Bill This movie was great and I loved the dance scene. 4 stars
6/07/01 AngieH Unlike "Moulin Rouge" this movie doesn't take itself serously, and it's a lot of fun. 5 stars
6/06/01 bats main review is on-target; I really tried to like it...no dice 2 stars
6/06/01 Muad'Dib Tells you in the first scene not to take it seriously and just have fun. Both are easy. 4 stars
6/05/01 Obi Wan Flick was very entertaining. I went in wanting to hate it, and instead loved it. 4 stars
6/03/01 Why do you need my name i thought the way they mixed the music into the movie made it better 5 stars
6/02/01 Jennifer Heath makes it all happen! 5 stars
6/01/01 Hayley Wells This movie broke all the rules in an awesome fashion! It was superb! 5 stars
5/31/01 Heath Ledger, not aproving of your review Thought the movie was great. It was supposed to be more of a commedy than serious btw Eric 4 stars
5/30/01 Katie I love this movie 5 stars
5/30/01 Kendra It was so good Heath is a really good actor 5 stars
5/30/01 Roy Smith Telegraphs better than Western Union, no suprises at all! 3 stars
5/29/01 Mike Montemayor This isn't a bad film, if you can get over the extraordinarily clean peasants. 4 stars
5/29/01 Denise Dionisio It was cute 4 stars
5/29/01 thefirkin Never listen to newspaper critics! Don't look for an oscar! THIS IS ENTERTAINMENT ONLY!! 5 stars
5/28/01 Edward Shandis ok, I saw it again with the ol' lady. It REALLY SUCKED this time. 1 stars
5/28/01 Kathy Although it's a bit corny at times (i.e. dance sequence), it's a cute movie worth seeing. 4 stars
5/28/01 steverino Lighten Up, and Enjoy it 4 stars
5/28/01 Alaman Fun movie. Go see it... 5 stars
5/27/01 katie this movie was so amazing, i really enjoyed it 5 stars
5/26/01 Kristi J Smith Wonderful, Entertaining, THIS MOVIE ROCKS!!! 5 stars
5/26/01 S What the hell! I am i missing something? i think this movie was great. 5 stars
5/25/01 Serena Witzke really good for what it is 5 stars
5/25/01 SlamRipley I don't know what the script writers were smoking, but I want some!!! 2 stars
5/25/01 Edward Shandis what in the hell happened back then? 2 stars
5/25/01 Jason Either have a comedy or a drama, don't try to mix the two; these guys aren't Chris Farley. 3 stars
5/25/01 Noelle This is a great film. It's unusual but that is what makes it fun. 5 stars
5/24/01 Brandon Herberger Could not stand this film 1 stars
5/24/01 Courtney Maxwell It ROCKS!!! Best movie ever!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/24/01 bluebeena Very disappointing... great for teeny boppers... 2 stars
5/24/01 malcolm good action, mix of music and medieval culture was hilarious, awesome ending 3 stars
5/23/01 Robynn A movie to go and have fun at, a few bits of dialogue made me cringe. 4 stars
5/22/01 Chris Shannyn Sossamon is sooooo damn fine...thats all i gotta say 5 stars
5/21/01 Kassandra This movie was very entertaining and heath ledger was gorgeous 5 stars
5/21/01 Lara This movie kicks ass! 5 stars
5/20/01 Murf Jocelyn was extremely hot! 5 stars
5/19/01 Barry Moyerman great movie, lots of fun for all 5 stars
5/19/01 Xalt Interesting, and very fun. The mingling of past and present was skillful and exciting. 4 stars
5/19/01 lorraine much more fun than I expected 4 stars
5/17/01 Graca excellent 5 stars
5/17/01 Matti Dwyer Awesome! The best movie I've seen lately! 5 stars
5/16/01 Thomas Albert Could have more detail and better dialogue but otherwise it was an epic in the making! 5 stars
5/16/01 Laura Fun and Whimsical! I loved the contemporary themes and music...it's just a movie! 5 stars
5/16/01 Kirsten One of the most visually uninteresting movies. Predictable, overly sentimental. Yuck. 2 stars
5/16/01 Rampage much better than Man in the Iron Mask and Mask of Zorro 4 stars
5/15/01 Krystal I smiled most of the time...did get quite long though 4 stars
5/15/01 Obisidianbear Very good Movie, and the girls love it. :P 4 stars
5/15/01 arvind comedy,drama,history,romance,emotion.all 3 stars
5/15/01 Kymbric Less historically accurate than a Disney film -- but charming and funny! 4 stars
5/15/01 Kirsten I loved it 5 stars
5/15/01 Aubie LOTS OF FUN!!! GREAT SOUNDTRACK!!! 5 stars
5/14/01 Julia I loved this movie. Great music and Great FUN! 5 stars
5/14/01 Airborne_Dan A good time, and a fun film. Relax and Enjoy..... 4 stars
5/14/01 Aaron Hanson I love historical flicks, especially the Middle Ages, thats just me, of course 5 stars
5/14/01 nang the best ever 5 stars
5/14/01 Stephanie I am glad to see some thin different than the same old midevil movies, i loved the music!! 5 stars
5/14/01 Out for fun I had a great time watching this flick. 5 stars
5/13/01 Sheila Collins awesome... although so far from reality, it doesn't even count. 5 stars
5/13/01 Johnny Kicks fucking ass!!! 5 stars
5/13/01 Jon Westrm Not worth the time or money. 1 stars
5/13/01 rlvj DO NOT LEAVE until after the theater cleaners have left! 4 stars
5/12/01 Chris A fun, light-hearted movie - Some great laughs! 5 stars
5/12/01 Kathleen Williams Funny! Definitely worth the $7 to go see! Not much these days is!!! 4 stars
5/12/01 Jake A Knugget's Tale made my root canal look like a fun time. Awful movie... 1 stars
5/12/01 Intestinal Discomfort This movie gave me painful gas cramps. It sucks big beefy balls. 1 stars
5/12/01 Todd Worse than Hitler 1 stars
5/10/01 nanny wow dont miss it 5 stars
5/09/01 *~Danielle*Ophelia~* (formerly KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi) The best part of this cinematic experience was sampling Cherry Mountain Dew. 2 stars
5/09/01 Katie This movie is the best movie I've seen all year!!!l 5 stars
5/06/01 Loretta Fischer I left with a grin on my face. 2 stars
5/06/01 Boyd Possin I was magnificently entertained--and I see a LOT of movies! 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:


Discuss this movie in our forum

USA
  11-May-2001 (PG-13)
  DVD: 27-Sep-2005

UK
  N/A

Australia
  23-Aug-2001




Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
eFilmCritic.com: Australia's Largest Movie Review Database.
Privacy Policy | HBS Inc. | |   

All data and site design copyright 1997-2014, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast