Hey folks, Harry here with Noodles look at A KNIGHT'S TALE which as of yet is still perfect at Rotten Tomatoes with very positive reviews. Hmmm.... Could Harry of been right? Oh god no... Perish the thought...
I always wanted to send you an email, considering I live in New York and see (a lot) of movies at advance screenings. Well, I'll start now, with my review of "A Knight's Tale", the new Heath Ledger in armor pic. I saw this film last night and have to say I was pretty impressed with it. I went in expecting some fun and the inevitable blunder or two, and came out feeling like a prophet.
The movie is very entertaining, with Ledger a very charismatic and winning lead role, if a little wooden at times, although that might have to do with the script, but more on that later. I must give respect to Ledger, I was satisfied with his acting, and while there are aspects of his character of young William Thatcher, that feel a bit rushed, especially towards the end of the film, they can be overlooked by realizing that this is not going to be winning any major awards next March, so why quibble?
Rufus Sewell as the evil/bad guy Adhamar is suitably both evil and bad. Every time he's on screen he's doing something that makes you want to boo, like some of the audience members did....it was a very um, interactive audience. But, this is Hollywood folks, so you know that even though Adhamar says he's going to marry Heath's girl, and even though he's up two points to none out of three in the final jousting match against Heath, he's the bad guy, he will never win....EVER.
Shannon Sossamon as Jocelyn, Heath's love interest, is in my own words, GORGEOUS. I fell in love with her the moment she stepped on the screen, and while most of her dialouge is incredibly flat, she's so beautiful, I didn't mind one bit.
Mark Addy, Paul Bettany (in the clever historial role of Geoffrey Chaucer) and Alan Tudyk round out Heath's merry band of friends. They are all very appealing, offering some great comic relief, especially Chaucer's monologues. Now onto my dislikes. The story, of William Thatcher, a squire who creates fake papers of nobility to enter the jousting contests, is a bit contrived, yet gives Heath plenty of oppurtunity to break wooden sticks into others. A unanimous decision in the group I went with was that William, who excels in swordfighting, and is not as good in jousting, should have stuck with both throughout the film, if only to mix up the action a little. William drops the swordfighting because all of the "glory" is in jousting, but this resorts the remainder of the film to jousting action, no more swordplay. Even a climactic swordfight between William and Adhamar is missing, something which I felt would have helped.
I'm sure everybody has heard of this film using classic rock songs in it's score, and while my group's opinions on this were mixed, I was against it. I felt that the songs detracted from everything the story was doing, because the production values were incredible, costumes, set design, etc. were all exceptional, but then to hear Queen come on, it removes you from the world the film goes to such great lengths to bring you to. Brian Helgeland, who wrote, produced and directed this is to be commended for two of three.
The film is beautiful, bonus points for casting the lust-inducing Shannon Sossomon, and the directing keeps the story moving, but the script hits too many dry spots, especially in the romantic scenes. These are two beautiful people, do we need them spouting crappy dialouge? No, if they stood there and kissed and looked passionately at each other, I don't think anyone would mind.
That's my biggest complaint, the script, it left much to be desired, in that it took itself wayyyyyy too seriously. A little camp would have worked perfectly. All in all though, the cast is strong, the production values are perfect, and this film will most likely be a crowd-pleaser, as it should. This film entertains, so if you go expecting that, you will be pleased. I'll try to hit you back with some more email Harry, so until next time,