weeks of being in a cinematic desert, it's a joy to come across
an oasis of a film that wants to entertain rather than batter
the audience with 120 decibels of noise or wow them with limp
special effects or force the audience's brain into a knot
with an overcomplicated plot.
Brian Helegeland has adapted one of Geoffrey Chaucer's tales
and turned it into a film that has a genuine sense of its
Ledger (dumb but handsome) is William Thatcher, a squire to
an old knight who dies at the end of a tournament.
the knight's armour and wins. He wants to continue as a knight
(and who wouldn't when it means you can fall in love with
Lady Jocelyn, played by Shannyn Sossaman) but he is a commoner.
then encounters Chaucer (Paul Bettany) and sets about gaining
his ultimate goal of fame and fortune.
should not, in theory, work. It manages to meld crazy Monty
Python mediaevalism and classic rock music with a verve and
confidence rarely seen in either mainstream or independent
is not going to win any awards but that is not the point.
Everyone involved is having a ball and their enthusiasm runs
through the film.
de vivre is infectious. Count Adhemar (Rufus Sewell) could
do with a little more screen time and is a little colourless
as the villain but after such brainless and heartless films
as Tomb Raider it is wonderful to discover how good Hollywood
can be when it puts its mind to it.