JABBERWOCKY 1977

Amazon Instant Video

(45) IMDb 6.2/10

Terry Gilliam and Michael Palin pull together another medieval satire. A young man is forced to find fortune on his own in a kingdom terrorized by an evil monster called the Jabberwock.

Starring:
Michael Palin,Max Wall
Runtime:
1 hour, 45 minutes

Available to watch on supported devices.

JABBERWOCKY

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Product Details

Genres Action & Adventure, Comedy
Director Terry Gilliam
Starring Michael Palin, Max Wall
Studio Sony Pictures International
BBFC rating Parental Guidance
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on 6 Jan. 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Based on Lewis Carrol's 'The Jabberwock', Terry Gilliam unleashes the full force of his creative talents in this brilliant film.
We follow the adventures of Dennis Cooper, besotted with love for the gruesome Griselda Fishfinger, as he is disowned by his dying father and goes off to seek his fortune in the city. The city is however besieged by the eponymous monster, so the king (played to wonderful effect by Max Wall) arranges a tourney to select the best knight to kill the beast. Of course, Dennis is carried along and wins the day.
Doresn't sound much of a story, does it? - but the intricately detailed sets, the wonderful staged humour and brilliant direction make this a cut and a half above anything else in the genre. It knocks the Monty Python films into a cocked hat - and they are GOOD! Not for nothing did this film win the best comedy at Montreux. Particularly good performances from Max Wall, John leMesurier, Harry H Corbett and of course, Michael Palin, who just IS Dennis.
I don't understand how a great film like this has been allowed to fall out of circulation. I'd give it 10 stars if I could.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Casley TOP 500 REVIEWER on 12 Jun. 2010
Format: DVD
"It is the middle of the Dark Ages, darker than anyone ever expected..."

This was Gilliam's first movie as a director independent of the Python team, although it possesses many Python influences. Filmed at Chepstow and Pembroke castles, as well as in a Welsh quarry for the battle scenes against the monster, one cannot help but make immediate associations with `Monty Python and the Holy Grail', which Gilliam co-directed with Terry Jones two years before. We have the same medieval setting, the same bad teeth and bodily functions, the same mud and grime. (Gilliam says in the accompanying commentary that the film is so textured that you can smell it.) There are also the same witty names: Dennis Cooper, Griselda Fishfinger, King Bruno the Questionable (son of Olaf the Loud), the Blessed Sisters of Misery, and Saint Tallulah's Day. The main difference from `Grail', though is that this time there is a through-story to be told rather than a collection of sketches cobbled together to make a film. And there is also political and economic symbolism aplenty.

In the commentary, which he shares with the lead Michael Palin, Gilliam references Tarkovsky's `Andrei Rublev', Scott's `Alien', Boorman's `Excalibur', and even Lucas's `Star Wars' as influences or stylistic equivalents. He describes his film in terms of a cinematic Brueghel, and goes on to reference other artistic influences including Bosch and Caravaggio. He adds that he deliberately kept half the screen often in darkness so as to allow the imagination to flourish, at least for those with imaginations. (Really, of course, the reason is lack of finance for anything more fanciful: Gilliam always fills the screen if he has the resources to do so.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Gille Liath on 26 Sept. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Don't write this off as failed Python. In the entertaining commentary on this disk, TG and Michael Palin not only state that they were trying to get away from the Python style with this film, but even that they think there are too many gags in it. I wouldn't go so far as that; Lewis Carroll's eerie source poem doesn't really have a great bearing on this story, but what they share is an ambiguous tone somewhere between epic, comic and surreal. All Gilliam's early films are about the relationship between real and fantasy worlds, and this is really no exception: Palin is the modern-minded mediocrity unwittingly (and unwillingly) caught up in a fairy tale.

Visually there's a certain similarity to `Holy Grail' (this is far more accomplished); in comedy terms, the closest thing is Palin's quirky, understated `Ripping Yarns' - but that doesn't have the same deep, ineluctable strangeness. In all honesty there's no other film like this. Just see the `you might also like' films trailed on the disc - `First Knight' and `Knight's Tale'! Good grief.

I'm also indebted to the commentary for the following fascinating trivia: TG's `diamond mine' character was originally to have been played by Dudley Moore; both the Black Knight and Palin's master are played by David Prowse (of Darth Vader fame), voices by Max Wall (King Bruno); and John Boorman apparently showed the film a dozen times to his crew before making Excalibur. How's that for a recommendation?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By xenrin on 18 May 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It was a discusion that sparked a return to this film to this for me, having seen it on its original release. Was it as good as I remembered.? Could I relate to the inane humour after nearly 40 years? Overall yes and yes. The Terry Gilliam / Monty Python-ish elements are stamped all over the film with loads of visual humour alongside plodding sections. A wealth of British character actors festoon and cavort thoughout the film, which although doesn't quite reach the height of Life of Brian, is still very watchable and enjoyable. Pass me the raw potato.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Stribley on 1 April 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Plenty have written more detailed reviews, suffice to say Jabberwocky is much darker than the usual Monthy Python productions and the story works really well in this style than, say the slapstick style of other Python productions. Some of the character acting by many well-known faces is great and there are some scenes that are both hilarious and grotesque simultaneously.
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