Thursday, October 25, 2012

My Favorite King Arthur

Arthur and his lovely knights of the Round Table have kind of taken over my life lately. It all started when I was planning my NaNo novel. It was going to be a paranormal romance involving faeries. In preparation, I was reading through Stroud and Lee's Faeries. In a small, almost insignificant paragraph, it mentioned that Arthur lies with his knights somewhere in Faery, awaiting the time when we need him again. The novel practically started writing itself! So now I'm reading Mists of Avalon, and last night, I re-watched one of my favorite Arthur movie renditions. The funny part about this is that Lisa Hall-Wilson recently had a poll on her Facebook page asking people which King Arthur was their favorite. Clive Owen is mine.

Why is this my favorite Arthur rendition?

Several reasons, really. First, hot actors. In one movie, portraying some of the most famous knights to ever live, you have Clive Owen (Arthur), Ioan Gruffudd (Lancelot), Mads Mikkelsen (Tristan), Hugh Dancy (Galahad), and Joel Edgerton (Gawain). Not to mention Stellan Skarsgard as the evil Saxon invader.

Second, the story is believable. I'm not saying the traditional Arthur legends aren't, but in this version, they're all just men and women going about their lives. While a mystic element surrounds the "Woads" (aka: Picts), they don't use magic. Merlin is just a man, a leader of his people, and his daughter Guinevere is just a badass in blue paint. I can't vouch for the accuracy of this film (or any other), but it's an interesting take on a classic legend.

*Spoiler Alert* What I Didn't Like

My favorite Mikkelsen role
There is one thing I didn't really like about this film. Lancelot and Tristan are arguably the most advanced warriors in the group (Arthur aside). And yet, at the end, they're the two that bite the figurative bullet. Now, I may just be biased due to my overwhelming love for Tristan, but it seems like both deaths were weak. 

That aside, this is an excellent retelling of an old tale that I can watch time and time again.

What is your favorite Arthur rendition? Who is your favorite Knight of the Round Table?

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