After failing their last mission, the infamous Three Musketeers, Porthos (Ray Stevenson), Aramis (Luke Evans) and Athos (Matthew Macfadyen) are left to their own devices. That is until D’Artagnan (Logan Lerman) unintentionally reunites them in the hope to becoming one himself to follow in the footsteps of his father before him. Thus the adventure begins as the Musketeers aim to protect France and their flouncy king against the arrogant Englishman, Buckingham (Orlando Bloom).
Forget everything you know about the Three Musketeers. Whether you’ve read the story or only know the names of the famous three from Slumdog Millionaire, just leave your brain at the screen door. Despite the historical inaccuracies, this ‘re-telling’ of the famous trio (or more like quadruple in this version) is extreme, silly and unbelievably ridiculous. It seems a little quirky with the action stopping once each character is introduced and quite funny – whether that is intentional or not is the general theme to the whole movie. For many reasons you might find yourself laughing out loud, not because of the jokes or the intentional humour, but because it’s quite terrible in places and simply must be a satire… but is it? It doesn’t seem clever enough to be a parody, because if it was an American spoof there would no doubt be more fart jokes and slow-motion silliness.
There are many irritating moments during the film, the main one being the accents. Both Milady (Milla Jovovich) and D’Artagnan start off with a pretty awful American-trying-to-do-English accent and by the middle of the film they have just given up completely. It’s not subtle, it’s incredibly obvious that these are the only two actors that can’t do a little English accent and can’t be bothered to continue in their terrible attempts, despite being cast with British actors. Speaking of which, the British talent in the film is undeniable and it makes you wonder why they are in a film as bad as this.
However, it should be worth mentioning the good points of the movie – albeit there aren’t very many. Firstly, this is one film where Orlando Bloom isn’t annoying and wearing the same old expression. He’s still pretty expressionless, but his usually soft and questionably alluring voice has matured and is a little raspy (maybe his voice broke?), and actually makes you believe that he could become an actor who gets better with age. On the other hand, because the film was so awful, it might very well be that it made Bloom look better because of this, or he is becoming a better actor moving away from the typecast ‘Hollywood Hunk’ icon.
The other good parts of the film include the CGI, choreography and costumes. The fight scenes are unbelievable and might make you scoff, but the skill of the fights are attractive and what you would expect in any action film with a few swordfights. The CGI is top-notch, which is a bit of a let-down in the sense that so much money was spent on a film which does not live up to any expectations: that is if you had any to begin with.
The women in the film wear some fantastic costumes (as well as the King of France, but that’s another matter), but even their stunning costumes do not make up for the fact that the roles of the women are stereotypical. Milady is the most empowered woman with a strong mind but because of her independence, she is highly sexualised and in one scene she practically strips down to her undergarments so she can sneak around and scale down the palace building unnoticed. Oh, and she can fight in a dress as well. D’Artagnan’s love interest Constance (Gabriella Wilde) is pretty but emotionless. Her role in the film is to kiss D’Artagnan at least three times, vaguely insult him a few times more and expect to be rescued by him as the helpless Damsel-in-Distress. If you’re just a tiny bit feminist, then please do not watch this movie otherwise you will be tearing your hair out.
The script is flat, cliché and full of jokes that make you groan. The ending of the film sets the stage, tragically, for a sequel. Let’s hope they just leave it here because it’s not clever or substantial enough to profit in making a sequel. For now, expect to watch this film and to not be surprised. Eyebrows will be raised, eyes will roll, and there’s a high chance that you’ll end up putting your face in your hands in disbelief at the predictable ‘twists’. All in all, this film is made up of a fairly good cast but can be summed up as a film as cheesy as the smelliest French cheese.