When I came out of The Green Knight, my brain was on fire and I truly felt I could write 40 essays about this film (having just re-read the original poem no added added a few essays to the pile, and gave me the right context to appreciate the alliterative verse they actually use on screen - I'm a man of simple tastes, all I wanted from the movie was alliterative verse). When the poem was in illustration of chivalric values, the film is perhaps more a deconstruction of them, and its Gawain (brilliantly played by Dev Patel) is a man-child with fewer virtues than the text's would admit. There, it was about overcoming his crucial flaw, cowardice, but in the film, he understands honor as a word in a book, apprehending it like a child would. So no matter how much he travels, his quest is an interior one (and his ultimate heroic act an interior one). I've read a quick review of the poem that went "English literature's first WTF", and I quite like that. It's full of surprise twists. The film makes changes to better foreground those surprises, give them more meaning, keep a certain ambiguity, and so on, with injections of other Gawain tales (or tellings) that keep even the literary nerd off-balance, yet add to the whole. Great imagery supports the theme of substitution that is present in the original romance, and despite the supernatural elements, Camelot looks like the Dark Ages, not Hollywood's colorful version of it. I'm just scratching the surface of a very deep ocean here.

3 months ago


Wonderful! Amazing cinematography (Almost every single every shot is stunning), strange but interesting story and great atmosphere. Did not understand everything, but that's the idea. Eager to read the book now.

3 months ago


Very odd movie that gives you a lot to think about. I went with people who have and haven't read the original stories and poems so we all had a different experience and different hindsight analysis. To give you an idea, we ended up staying in the parking lot for over an hour in the hot sun discussing it.

I'm not sure if I liked it or not, but I don't think this is a movie that should even be judged by whether or not you liked watching it, that's not really the point.

I will say I rather disliked the editing. If you see it you'll understand what I mean, but the timing of the cuts and what shots it cuts between as well as the fade transitions make the whole movie feel like one long trailer. I can't tell if it's on purpose so you never settle in (and thus gives the movie the feel of a "and then THIS happened" style that old stories have), or if it was just edited sloppily.

3 months ago

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