A KNIGHT'S TALE (2001) 

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Heath Ledger
Rufus Sewell
Shannyn Sossamon
Paul Bettany
Mark Addy
Alan Tudyk
Laura Fraser
Berenice Bejo
James Purefoy

Brian Helgeland



Time: 132 mins.
Rating: PG-13
Genre: Romance/Drama/Medieval

SYNOPSIS: After his master dies, a peasant squire, fueled by his desire for food and glory, creates a new identity for himself as a knight.

BOTTOM LINE: A film where petulance passes for personality. Ledger takes a huge acting step backwards in this over-inflated tale of chivalry and derring-do. His chops and charms are hidden under machismos and frat boy antics as his character winds his way from poverty to knighthood, stopping to fall in love with a princess along the way. The "daring" selling point of the film is its' use of rock-n-roll classics, like "We Will Rock You," to give the period piece a cutting, current edge. However, since the look and feel of the flick is more MTV medieval than historically accurate, the music interludes aren't as outrageous as the filmmakers would like them to be.

Ledger tries to give the flick spirit and heart and as long as he's jousting he succeeds. The action sequences never tire. It's the filler that never really goes anywhere. Addy, Bettany and Tudyk make funny and admirable sidekicks, giving the film some of its' better moments. Sossoman tries to be more than just a pretty face, but she doesn't have much to do to prove it. There's enough of a spark between her and Ledger to make the romance aspect interesting, however, their junior high antics throughout most of the film take much of the passion out of the proceedings. Sewell gets the shaft as he plays yet another sinister bad guy who loses more than just the girl. I wish someone would give him a role equal to his brooding talent. Mindless entertainment for the pre-teen set. Those out of high school are less likely to be amused.

"Now I got their attention, you go and win their hearts."

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