Time to Give the Arthur Legends Another Big-Screen Try?

Will anyone ever get it right?

Galahad looks to be the next movie drawn from the adventures of Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. (Cinematical speculates: Will Gerard Butler be Galahad?)

The Arthur legends are some of the richest stories ever told, and yet Arthur has suffered some of his most embarrassing defeats on the big screen. John Boormn’s Excalibur has a sort of glam-rock glory to it, but is it really the ultimate Arthur movie, or was it really just an extended wizard-rock music video ahead of its time?

Clive and Kiera? Blecch.

Gere and Connery? No way.

Only Monty Python’s efforts have made it into my DVD library.

I say that Disney had the right idea with The Sword and the Stone. T.H. White’s The Once and Future King is¬†fantastic source material, just waiting for the right director to come along and turn it into a movie, or better, a couple of movies.

Who would you want to see direct an Arthurian epic?

Who should play Arthur? Guinevere? Lancelot? Merlin?

Or should this be a Pixar 3-D project, marrying supreme digital technology with grownup-moviegoer seriousness, succeeding where Beowulf fell short?

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  • kenmorefield

    Eric Rohmer

  • Gerard Butler is too old to play Galahad. Good grief. In fact, the whole project already sounds even more depressing than the most recent Beowulf travesty. “Based on the well-known legend”—sure, if you consider simply using the well-known characters’ names sufficient for saying your is “based on” traditions people ought to know.


  • phillytle

    Is it time? No. They should leave it alone for a good long time. Then, when we have all had a break from the mediocre fare that they have been trotting out the past 15 years, a director with vision can adapt Stephen Lawhead’s interpretation of the Arthur legend. I would pay to see “that” version on the big screen.

  • Course, your headline, for reasons entirely unclear, made me think of Marc Brown. http://tinyurl.com/yqzzz6

  • Tia Nevitt

    Camelot was not a perfect adaptation. I think Hollywood was too cowardly to make Lancelot as White described, with the face of an ape. In White’s novel, Lancelot was blanch-worthy ugly. And he was prone to fits of madness, just as he was in Le Morte d’Arthur.

    I’d love to see a 2 (or even 3, if you include The Book of Merlin) movie adaptation of White’s work.

  • Ah, but what about Richard Harris/Vanessa Redgrave musical, Camelot? Musicals aren’t for everybody, but I remember crying when I was a wee lad about King Arthur’s broken heart.

    “Daddy? What were Lancelot and Guinevere doing, anyway?”

    “Er, don’t worry about it, son. Go fetch yer jammies.”


  • kenmorefield

    Robert Bresson

  • Director: Christopher Nolan, Michael Mann, or Martin Scorsese (stop laughing, how many other directors are around that can handle epics?)

    Arthur: Russell Crowe or Hugh Jackman

    Guinevere: Cate Blanchett

    Lancelot: Ewan MacGregor

    Merlin: Alan Rickman