by Mike Favila, Reviewer
As a relatively big fan of Milla Jovovich (The Fifth Element), I was eager to check out her and husband Paul W.S. Anderson’s (Resident Evil Series) take on the classic book by Alexandre Dumas. Would The Three Musketeers blast away the Disney version starring Charlie Sheen (pre winning era)? I popped in my Blu-ray to find out.
For the uninitiated, The Three Musketeers chronicles the adventures of Athos, Porthos (Ray Stevenson) and Aramis (Luke Evans), as they attempt to break into Leonardo da Vinci’s vault to steal some blueprints.
Unfortunately, they are betrayed by Athos’ lover Milady (Jovovich) and are shut down by Cardinal Richelieu (Inglourious Basterds‘ excellent Christoph Waltz) as punishment. Meanwhile, a young D’Artagnan (Logan Lerman) sets off to Paris to become a famed Musketeer. What he sees instead are a handful of flawed individuals with no goal.
In an attempt to undermine the teen Louis XIII, Cardinal Richelieu sets off a plan to make Queen Anne look like she is having an affair with the Duke of Buckingham (Orlando Bloom), who also happens to be Milady’s current lover. This involves Milady stealing Queen Anne’s diamond necklace from the king and planting it in the Duke’s private fault in England. Whew! And with that, the Musketeers (with D’Artagnan in tow) have a renewed purpose and mission. Whew.
Being that Paul W.S. Anderson is her husband, I didn’t really expect Milla to just sit back and do nothing, so naturally, Milla gets about half of the prime action sequences. I didn’t get a chance to see this in 3D, but I imagine they look pretty amazing. Whether she’s fighting 10 guards, jumping through wires that could slice her to ribbons to steal the necklace, or dodging cannonballs, she makes it all look completely effortless. Matthew Macfadyen’s Athos talks like a living Optimus Prime, with gravitas and brooding. At first it comes off a little silly, but as the movie progressed his portrayal made more sense, as Milady’s betrayal weighed heavily. Ray Stevenson (Thor) is hilarious and every scene he’s involved in is an immediately laugh.
D’Artagnan’s accent (and everybody else’s, for that matter) were a little dodgy, but a bit of suspension of disbelief will help. I tried to imagine it in the vein of Knight’s Tale, where everything is just a little ridiculous. I loved the melange of weapons on the airship, including the old school machine gun (with rotating canons instead of bullet chambers). They even have an airship battle! Anderson really knows how to throw a party/explosion/caper, and every frame is literally a blast. It was also very interesting to see most of the well known actors play the villains.
- Deleted & Extended Scenes – Whenever a new part comes on during the extended scene, a little icon actually saying “Extended Footage” shows up. How useful is that for us movie nerds?
- Cast & Crew stories
- 17th Century Action
- Audio Commentary with the Director & more
- Exclusive to Blu-ray and 3D Blu-ray:
- Access: Three Musketeers – This feature blends all the special features together and adds a nice pop up video style trivia track, including how many people each Musketeer stabbed.
Audio & Video
The colors on the BD are vivid but realistic. It makes you imagine a Venice that isn’t over a thousand years old. The tapestries haven’t faded, the walls haven’t seen a million wars yet. The Three Musketeers has a colorful palette, and the format is a great way to showcase Anderson’s visual flair. The audio track is bombastic but not painful. There’s an equal emphasis on dialog and explosions.
Though the plot cowritten by Alex Litvak (Predators) was a little convoluted, I found The Three Musketeers to be pretty enjoyable. The ending sets up for a sequel, although it seems like the possibility will heavily depend on BD sales. A The Three Musketeers sequel would make for a great expansion of the world, providing it could be made.
ComicsOnline gives The Three Musketeers 3.5 out of 5 sabers in the air!
Buy The Three Musketeers at Amazon today!
Swashbuckle with us at ComicsOnline.com for more Blu-ray reviews and everything geek pop culture!