46 of 52 people found the following review helpful
Behold! The Clockpunk Musketeers!,
Amazon Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Three Musketeers (Blu-ray 3D + Blu-ray) (Blu-ray)
As the other reviews for this film will suggest, it's best to watch this film expecting a swashbuckling adventure which gleefully dispatches with historical accuracy - if you're wanting an adaptation which is true to the historical period in which the Dumas novel was set, you'll only be annoyed by this film (I can't remember D'Artagnan being Californian in the book...).
Instead, think of this film as a cover version of the Dumas story by Jules Verne fans cranked up on sugar, which replaces horses and carriages with airships. The expected armoury of swords are accompanied by the King Louis XIII era's version of machine guns. If something can be blown-up, it will be. If a device can be given a steam-punk or, indeed, clock-punk makeover, the production design department will be all over it.
The performances are mostly fine - though Matthew Macfadyen is an excellent stand-out as the cynical Athos - and most of the actors seem to have been given free reign to have fun with their characters. Orlando Bloom, as the Duke of Buckingham is channelling Ziggy-era Bowie and wearing Lady Gaga's dancers cast-off wardrobe to marvellous effect.
I suspect that nobody in the cast was under the impression that they were in an Oscar-bait film and have calibrated performances accordingly, nobody more so than the charmingly villainous anti-hero of the piece, Cardinal Richelieu, embodied by Christoph Waltz as part-venerated religious leader, part-Snidely Whiplash schemer, leading a merry dance around his foppish royal charges with a smoothly venomous look in one eye and a manner which recalls the affronted surprise of a career politician caught with his fingers in the biscuit barrel.
The action set-pieces are lavishly mounted and conceived presumably to be at their most effective when presented in 3D - I saw this theatrically in the format and can only imagine that in 2D you will be wondering why every sword fight has to find a moment for a stray blade to jab out at the audience and why every explosion is intended to make you literally duck in your seat as thousands of wooden splinters make a bee-line for your eyes.
Your enjoyment of this movie (and it is certainly a movie rather than a serious artistic statement rendered in celluloid) may pall if you're unconvinced by the current obsession with making every film a 3D spectacular. If you view this film instead as a cheeky, B-movie crowd-pleaser which has no pretensions towards being anything other than a breathless, knowingly absurd adventure, you'll have a great time with it.
Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Jan 2012 12:15:13 GMT
Brilliant review! Well done :-)
Posted on 29 Feb 2012 23:59:18 GMT
Last edited by the author on 1 Mar 2012 00:00:20 GMT
Neal Vincent says:
I'll second that - an accurate review by someone who "got" what this movie was.
The only serious bum note (for me) was the inclusion of those desperately unfunny "James Corden does his James Corden schtick" moments, but luckily they were brief. I mean, what possible use does a movie that's a gleefully preposterous OTT comedic romp from start to finish have for a "comic relief" character anyway?
To balance that negative with a positive, this film contained some of the best sword-fight choreography I've seen in a very long time - outside of Asian movies, at least. The final fight, in particular, really makes you sit up and realise just how feebly and lazily staged most movie sword-fights are.
Posted on 18 Nov 2012 02:25:50 GMT
Marshall Lord says:
Thank you for one of the most entertaining reviews I've read in a long time. Also helpful in guiding my decision as to whether to rent or buy this film.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›