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Thursday, July 8, 2004

Movie: King Arthur

Posted on Thu, Jul 8, 2004 at 4:00 AM

***
King Arthur
Length: 2 hours, 10 minutes
Studio: Touchstone Pictures
Website: http://kingarthur.movies.go.com/main.html
Release Date: 2004-07-07
Cast: Clive Owen, Stephen Dillane, Keira Knightley, Hugh Dancy, Ioan Gruffudd
WorkNameSort: King Arthur
Our Rating: 3.00

As Troy proved, there's little sense in adapting a great mythology while excising its supernatural aspects – especially when you're obviously trying to appeal to the Lord of the Rings crowd. Yet director Antoine Fuqua's (Training Day) take on the Arthurian mythos is dramatically sound entertainment for the first hour or so, with Clive Owen's precoronation title character leading his knights on a last mission before they're released from the service of Rome. Things start to go to cock with the arrival of a nearly feral Guinevere played by Keira Knightley, who can't even sound convincing speaking in her mother tongue. The movie's midsection feels strangely truncated, making room for a drawn-out final act that blithely disregards one of Peter Jackson's tenets: Battlefield sequences get pretty boring if you don't keep cutting away to smaller, character-driven passages. Gallop, stab, yawn. Is he king yet?

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