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Necromancer Merlin (Nicol Williamson) offers the magic sword Excalibur to the warlike Uther Pendragon (Gabriel Byrne) in exchange for a promise that he'll make peace with his enemy, the duke of Cornwall (Corin Redgrave). He agrees but breaks his word after catching sight of Cornwall's wife, Igraine (Katrine Boorman). With the magician's help he makes love to the woman in the guise of her husband. She bears a child, Arthur, who is taken by Merlin as payment for his assistance and left in the care of Ector (Clive Swift). Years pass, and the boy, now a humble squire, pulls Excalibur from the stone in which Uther had sunk it--a task no other could accomplish. With Merlin's counsel, he marries the stunning Guenevere (Cherie Lunghi), finds a champion in Sir Lancelot (Nicholas Clay), subdues the skirmishing knights, and builds the Round Table to unite them. Yet his half-sister, Morgana (Helen Mirren), lurks in the shadows, preparing to poison her brother's reign. (official distributor synopsis)


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English Few people know that Boorman was originally going to make a Lord of the Rings film, but changed his mind at the last minute and ended up using some of the costumes and armour for the Tolkien adaptation in Excalibur. For the viewers, that’s great. The Arthurian legend could not have been filmed better than Boorman did, and it is unlikely to be surpassed in the future. Also thanks to the music, starting with Wagner and ending with Orff, the perfect production design and the overall magical atmosphere. ()


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English A classic fantasy of the highest possible level. Nowadays, it might feel a little silly, but it had to be pretty epic back then. Especially the war scenes were flawless. Sure, it had a greater impact on me when I was a kid, but I still think that as far as fantasy goes, Excalibur is unparalleled. ()



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English Fantasy the way it should be. If you insist on historical authenticity, Excalibur can be described as a god-given fiction in which absolutely nothing is true to the times. However, Boorman made the legend into an atmospheric spectacle that doesn't worry about any of this. This fantasy flight will be hard to overcome, although it is quite ridiculous at times (intercourse in armor is part of the golden fund of film erotica :o))). Orff's musical undertones are powerful, the visual stylization impressive, the acting performances are very good, and the story... I don't think it will ever get old. ()


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English Some very good to excellent scenes (Arthur's duel with Lancelot, Perceval's search for and finding the Grail...) are unpleasantly spoiled by downright boring scenes, during which I had a hard time not reaching for the remote and pushing the tired plot forward a bit. It is the same with the actors - some act well, others overact badly, the music is only good when Wagner or Orff (sorry, Trevor Jones) are blaring, and the set sometimes looks spectacular, sometimes suspiciously cheap and almost Monty Python-esque. I'm only half satisfied with the vaunted Excalibur in every respect. ()


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English Borefest. The narrative is somewhat disjointed and uninteresting in the spoken sequences, while the action scenes are shot in a confused manner and it’s difficult to navigate them. On the other hand, great praise should be given to the impressive fantasy atmosphere, the wonderful music by Trevor Jones and the cast, which saves everything. Otherwise, this famous film is probably a legend only for those who rode it back in the 80s, nowadays is nothing but a faded trophy. ()

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