The Three Musketeers/The Four Musketeers

The Three Musketeers/The Four Musketeers. Este Films 1973/1974.

Before watching the movie:

A large-budget film with a star-studded cast and strict attention to period accuracy could go poorly in all sorts of ways. The actors could fight for attention to the detriment of the film, the visual appeal could be lost in gritty details or vice versa, and the effort put into the enormous practical concerns could stomp out any entertainment value of the film.

These worries are only enhanced by the subject material. I vaguely recall an adaptation of The Three Musketeers in that a young man wants to be a Musketeer, gets in a fight with some, and then they all have adventures together. Rather dull, especially if one isn’t into swashbuckling tales.

I recognize many names, but I can connect hardly any of them with anything I know. At least it’s sold as a comedy, but I don’t expect much out of a 70s film.

Usually, I avoid sequels, but this pair was intended to be a single film, so I am taking it as one.

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Fantastic Voyage

Fantastic Voyage. 20th Century Fox 1966.

Before watching the movie:

I loved the concept of this movie when I first heard about it years ago. Matter shrinking, a tour of the human body, the body as a counterpart to outer space and alien worlds…

I’ve put it off for so long because films of the 60s and 70s, especially science fiction films, were focused on amazing imagery that looks badly dated today and moved at glacial paces. Aside from 2001: A Space Odyssey, I can’t think of a better opportunity for a filmmaker to stop and let the scenery flow over the acid-tripping audience than a submarine  drifting through the world inside the human body. Never mind the dying patient they belong to, aren’t those nerve fibers far out?

I just hope the storytelling of this movie won’t be as nonexistent as in 2001.

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