Lancelot (Richard Gere) is a rogue with no ties, no enemies, and no fear-until he meets Lady Guinevere of Leonesse (Julia Ormond). She has promised to marry King Arthur (Sean Connery), not only because his armies can protect her country from evils like Knight Malagant (Ben Cross), but because she truly loves him. But her chance encounter with Lancelot as she prepared to enter Camelot stirs conflicting and powerful emotions within her. Arthur welcomes both into his city with an open heart, little foreseeing how his great capacity for love and trust opens the doors for his own betrayal.
First Knight marks the second time that director Jerry Zucker has traded in the laughs of Airplane! and The Naked Gun films for something a bit more dramatic. His first, was a little "mega hit" called Ghost, therefore his limited track record in the genre was off to a fine start. To be honest though, the main draw for me in the film, was the prescence of Connery, whom I have always liked and Julia Ormand. She made quite a name for herself in Legends Of The Fall. I knew both of these actors could make the most with the material. It's too bad that Gere had to be in the film. He must have went to the same school on how to use a bad surfer dude accent, as Kevin Costner did. This is not something that's easy to forget. It is so bad that it brought everything else down in the process.Read more ›
It follows the story of Arthur, Guinevere, and Lancelot and thier journey from the time Quinevere and Lancelot meet by chance as her carraige is ambushed on her way to marry Arthur, through some more kidnappings, a wedding, and a knighthood, to the death of Arthur. Lancelot, who begins as a mercenary, grows a great deal as a character, while Guinevere's struggle to control her feelings for him is painfully clear. Sean Connery's Arthur is the kind of king one would expect of Arthur, kind, understanding, with a rigid set of morals that he cannot break even for his queen. Julia Ormond makes it clear that Guinevere loves both men and Richard Gere's sensitive performance and longing looks tug the heartstrings.
In essense, it is the acting and the love story that make this movie enjoyable. It is a remarkably un-historically accurate movie and there is not much in common, aside from the names, with the traditional Arthur legends, but these old stories are made to be interpreted. The romance of the movie is what makes it worth watching...that a Richard Gere looks really, really good.