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The Three Musketeers (2011) Review

The Three Musketeers Review

 

  When I first saw the trailer for the newest take on the Alexander Dumas classic The Three Musketeers, I was immediately reminded of the recent re imagining of Sherlock Holmes by director Guy Ritchie starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law.

 

  So what if their adding in airships to 17th century France? I can handle it. I mean if done right it could be very interesting Sliders like take on The Three Musketeers.

 

  I love to see new takes on classics; my concern however was when I saw who was directing the movie, Paul W.S. Anderson, yes the director behind the Resident Evil movies. You know the ones that are an utter betrayal to the video game series of the same name.

 

Movie musketeers through time

 

  Well this is a story about the three musketeers Athos (Matthew Macfadyen), Aramis (Luke Evans), Porthos (Ray Stevenson), and D'Artagnan (Logan Lerman). At least we don't have to worry about the director's wife and Resident Evil star Milla Jovovich showing up to this one right.

 

The Three Musketeers and Milady de Winter

Milla Jovovich as Milady de Winter, the fates are very cruel indeed.

 

  Okay so now I enter this movie with much more trepidation. But I am a big fan of the classic novels and have enjoyed other film adaptations of The Three Musketeers before.

 

Christopher Gravuer Musketeer

Don't judge me!

 

  The opening sequence is stunning, using a very unique visual style to paint a picture of the troubles that the King and Queen of France face in the 17th century.

 

  Right off the film departs from the novel that it is based on, beginning in Venice Italy as the three musketeers and milady de Winter, search for the secret vault of Leonardo Da Vinci. Inside the vault are plans to a war machine (an Airship) that Da Vinci designed.

 

  In this adaptation of The Three Musketeers, Athos, Aramis, and Porthos are not only part of the Kings Musketeers but also the 17th century equivalent of French secret agents.

 

  As we are introduced to each musketeer they flash a graphic of their name up on the screen, this kind of reminded me of some of the visuals used in the Leonardo DiCaprio film Romeo + Juliet. I found its use here distracting and nothing more than trailer bait.

 

  With the plans in hand the team celebrates but is soon betrayed by Milady de Winter who turns out to be a double agent in the service of the English Duke Buckingham (Orlando Bloom).

 

  A year later we meet up with D'Artagnan training with his father on a hillside in Gascony France. Having learned everything that his father can teach him, his father passes on his own musketeer blade to D'Artagnan as his father before him had. His parents also give D'Artagnan, 15 crowns and a horse named buttercup, so that he can go to Paris to join the King's Musketeer.

 

  Along the way D'Artagnan has an encounter with the Cardinal's right hand man Rochefort (Mads Mikkelsen). A surprising twist a moment later and D'Artagnan's life is saved by Milady de Winter.

 

  In D'Artagnan's pursuit of Rochefort, he runs into and manages to insult each of the three musketeers, triggering three different duels he will need to fight later on.

 

  After losing Rochefort in the crowds of Paris, D'Artagnan goes off to the first of his appointed duels with the musketeers, but the duel is interrupted by the Cardinal's Guard who try to arrest the four for dueling.

 

Against the Cardinal's Guard

Four versus Forty, hardly seems fair for the forty.

 

  After a battle with the Cardinal's Guards the four forgive each other and become friends. Soon after they become involved in the struggles of the crown, the cardinal and the Duke of Buckingham.

 

  As many changes as they made in this particular adaptation, I found that, secret agents and airships aside, this one held more true to many of the moments that could be found in the original novel than any of the previous movie adaptations that I have seen.

 

Musketeers in Airships Demotivational Poster

It's not the Princess Ark but it's still awesome.

 

  The casting and acting of the main cast with the exception of perhaps Orlando Bloom (who just did not seem right in his role) is spot on, even Milla Jovovich turns in a decent performance for most of the film. It's the side characters and comic relief that seem to fall flat or are just a bit off and seem out of place.

 

  Sometimes events or scenes in the movie make absolutely no sense or go against what the characters just said they were going to do. This can be somewhat frustrating.

 

  There are amazing visuals, costumes, and scenery throughout the film, the filmmakers did an excellent job of bringing 17th century Europe to life. I was surprised at just how little out of time technology made its way into the film. Other then the Airships and airship weaponry very little strangeness was added in. It makes you wonder why the need for them at all. Then again I love airships so I am not going to argue.

 

  I saw this movie in good old fashion 2D so I really cannot comment on the 3D version. But seeing how it looked in 2D, I can imagine that the 3D would not really add much to the film.

 

  The way the movie ends it seems that they are trying to set The Three Musketeers up as a franchise much like Pirates of the Caribbean. It will be interesting to see where they take the story.

 

   Final verdict for The Three Musketeers 8/10 Some hit and miss scenes but still an interesting re imagining of a classic tale. Go see this one in the theaters.

 

 ~Professor

 

 

 

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