Sunday, May 14, 2017

Outstanding cast

I recently watched the 1981 movie Excalibur again.  I realized while watching it that the actor in the role of Uther Pendragon, Arthur's father by way of wizardry, looked familiar.  I was somewhat surprised to find out that the actor was Gabriel Byrne, not necessarily the first person that comes to mind to play a legendary English king.

While the movie featured an actor and actress already recognized for their high level of talent -- Nicol Williamson and Helen Mirren as Merlin and Morgana -- I hadn't realized that there were a few other actors whose names are now well-known in the movie, which was early in their career.   The three names that this applies to are Patrick Stewart, Liam Neeson, and Ciarán Hinds. If you don't recognize the last one (I knew the face but not the name), he's most recently been noticed for playing Mancy Rayder on Game of Thrones.

Excalibur is noted for a lot of things -- the score, which used excerpts from Die Gotterdamerung, Carmina Burana, and Tristan and Isolde -- the fact that director Boorman wanted to make The Lord of the Rings, but made this when that didn't work out (thank God) -- and the sets, all over England -- and finally, it has what is likely the best MIFANW  (Man in Full Armor, Naked Woman) sex scenes in the history of cinema.

Unfortunately I can't show you that here (but if you think it's hard to find, you would be wrong).  Instead, here's a GIF of when Merlin gets Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake.

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