King Arthur (2004)

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King Arthur
King arthur.jpg

King Arthur is a 2004 American-Irish adventure-fantasy film. A retelling of the King Arthur stories, it stars Clive Owen, Keira Knightley and Ioan Gruffud. The film differs from traditional Arthurian lore as its title character is a cavalry officer in the late Roman Empire, instead of a Medieval Knight.


In the 5th century AD, Arthur (Clive Owen), is a cavalry officer in the Roman army, guarding Hadrian's Wall against the Celtic tribes. When they are sent on a mission to rescue the family of Marius Honorious, who has been exterminating pagans, Arthur meets a beautiful pagan woman Guinevere (Keira Knightley), and the two team up to forge an alliance with the warring tribes and drive away the invading Saxons.

Bad Qualities

  1. The divergences from the original King Arthur legends. In this movie he is depicted as a soldier of Late Classical antiquity, rather than a knight from the Middle Ages. (However the movie depicts the Sarmatian theory that says Lucius Artorius Castus was the inspiration of the more well known Arthurian legend.)
  2. The action scenes are bland and generic.
  3. Lack of sorcery, and Merlin, Arthur's sorcerer friend, is restricted to a very minor role.
  4. Several important characters and events, such as Bedivere, the Lady of the Lake, Morgan le Fay, pulling the sword from the stone and finding the Holy Grail are omitted.
  5. Keira Knightley is miscast as Guinevere.
    • In fact, she looks like a reject from Xena: Warrior Princess.
  6. Poor attempts at being a grounded version of a classic story over 1000 years old.
  7. Lack of chemistry between Clive Owen and Keira Knightley.

Good Qualities

  1. Hans Zimmer's score is decent.
  2. The cinematography is nice.
  3. The director's cut is slightly better than the theatrical version.

External links