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HD   R Closed Captioning

John Boorman

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About the Movie

Medieval times are brought to vivid life in this spellbinding and stylish retelling of the legend of King Arthur, the Knights of the Round Table and the rise and fall of Camelot. Adapted from Sir Thomas Malory's classic "Le Morte D'Arthur," directed by multi-Academy Award-nominee John Boorman ("Deliverance," "Hope and Glory") and starring Academy Award-nominee Liam Neeson ("Batman Begins," "Kingdom of Heaven"), Golden Globe-nominee Patrick Stewart (the "X-Men" movies, the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" franchise), Gabriel Byrne ("The Usual Suspects," "Ghost Ship"), Nigel Terry ("Troy," "The Lion in Winter") and Academy Award-winner Helen Mirren ("The Queen," "Raising Helen").

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 38
  • Fresh: 31
  • Rotten: 7
  • Average Rating: 7.2/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: Mr. Boorman takes these myths very seriously, but he has used them with a pretentiousness that obscures his vision. – Vincent Canby, New York Times, Nov 6, 2013

Fresh: Give Boorman credit for the loopy grandeur of his imagery and imaginings, for the sweet smell of excess, for his heroic gamble that a movie can dare to trip over its pretensions -- and still fly. – Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine, Nov 6, 2013

Fresh: Exquisite, a near-perfect blend of action, romance, fantasy and philosophy, finely acted and beautifully filmed by director John Boorman and cinematographer Alex Thomson. – Variety Staff, Variety, Jul 7, 2010

Fresh: There is humor here (in the form of a vaudeville Merlin, played by Nicol Williamson) as well as a diminution of scale that seems intended to help audiences through the thornier byways of Boorman's vision. – Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader, Nov 6, 2013

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

My Favorite Movie of all time!

Loved this movie when it came out in 81, love it as much today. It's the best Arthurian film for me anyway. To Crowmagnum, take out the sex scene and you're left with knights hacking themselves with swords. Spears being driven into men's chests. A tree with knights' bodies hanging dead from and birds pecking their eyes out. Killing, murder and blood. Yeah, it's a good family film. Maybe, for the Manson family...Just kidding.

This was it.

My old man took me to see this when I was a kid. My eyes were like big white saucers. War with bloodthirsty heroes, sex with all the betrayal normal to the human condition...It was everything I could relate to reality. In addition, the fantasy element was lecherous and one wicked. You could love Merlin and understand why someone would hate him. Push that button and enjoy.


This is my favorite Arthurian interpretation. Very dark.