A Knights Tale|
I went into this movie with a free pass and low expectations. From the
way the trailers were assembled, I was fully expecting a "jocky" film in the
guise of a medieval jousting competition. And at a certain level, it still
retains a little bit of that old triumphant football movie. But it does
not take itself too seriously, inserting some light comic relief that is
funny without being inappropriate and ruining the story. The film is
about William Thatcher, a knight's squire, seeking out his lifelong dream of
becoming a knight by posing as one and entering into royal jousting
competitions. He takes along his two lifelong friends and along the way
they meet a very charismatic writer with a gambling problem to make a
"fake ID" for him.
If there is one thing that was annoying about the movie, it was
anachronistic soundtrack. When watching a movie with a medieval
setting, one does not expect to hear the sounds of Queen's "We Will Rock You"
or David Bowie's "Golden Years", and great as those tracks are, they didn't
fit with the atmosphere of the film. Even worse, when the crowd at a
jousting competition stomps and claps to the famous Queen song and
guards and peasants can be seen mouthing the words.
But all that aside, the story not only revolves around his wanting to be a
knight, but also his romancing one of the local noble ladies ( of course ).
The romance was approached in a very non overly syrupy way that fit
just right into the story without letting it take over completely. In
fact, for a chunk of the movie, they are for all intents and purposes
"broken up" and you don't see her at all.
Of course, the film is packed with armor busting, heels-over-head jousting
action, a villainous opponent you love to hate, men on horses, British
accents, hundreds of dirty peasants packing mud, a prodigal son, and
LOTS of splintered wood.
Besides, who doesn't get a warm feeling inside from men rushing on
horses trying to spear each other off of horses?
Animation has always been an underrated medium, often dismissed as
children's entertainment. When people think of animation, the words
Disney, saturday morning and after school come up. But the truth is that
it's a medium that supports something for everyone; from the Japanese
creating wonders like Graveyard of the Fireflies and Akira, to the great
American Classic "Heavy Metal", to the simply heartwarming Iron Giant.
Animation is something that people should face as an art on it's own,
used to depict things that might be hard to depict with live actors. But you're
reading The Collector Times now, so I probably don't have to tell YOU
Shrek is one of those "something for everyone" kinds of films. It's a
true family classic. With enough laughs for young and old. Only a small
level of "gas" oriented jokes, but well placed so that it doesn't just
become crude and disgusting. Shrek explores the adventure of an
misunderstood Ogre who's resolved himself to be what people make him
out to be: a Big Mean Ogre who guards his swamp with vicious cunning. But
as the lord of the land starts to flush out all of the "fairy tale creatures,"
they all end up in "his" swamp. Unable to get rid of them, the angry ogre
heads to Lord Farquaad ( Be creative with the pronunciation ) to demand
his swamp back. And so the adventure begins, without going into ruining
the storyline too much.
The movie was a fun, well animated spectacle, and Mike Myers was
great as the title character, it was a good idea that he go back and
replace his original voice work with his signature fake Scottish accent.
It really worked for the character. Eddie Murphy was simply hilarious as
Shrek's unwanted donkey sidekick and you could just see John Lithgow
saying the lines for Lord Farquaad because the character was so well
suited to him ....
The story line takes a couple of predictable turns, as well as an
ending that is less surprising than I think they intended it to be. But
all in all, it was a fun film for animation fans of all ages. And NO
singing animal numbers.
Laurier CIM Group