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Eroticism, martial arts and parody: The Three Musketeers revised and corrected by the cinema


Alexandre Dumas' most famous work has been adapted in a thousand ways. Almost unwatchable burlesque re-readings or "nanars" Le Figaro presents an anthology of the best of the worst.


The Three Musketeers is a picaresque novel and infinitely funny

", this review by Claude Schopp, the specialist in Alexandre Dumas, explains in a nutshell why the most famous work of the great novelist was adapted from the freest way and it must be said in the way that is sometimes the most incongruous.

A few days before the release of the first part of Martin Bourboulon's new version, which, if not very close to the novel, wants to be very serious or even epic, we thought it was fun to come back to the most delirious re-readings of the adventures d'Athos, Porthos, Aramis and d'Artagnan.

From Douglas Fairbanks to the Charlots, - who of course will embody the valets, Planchet and others -, passing the atomic nanar

the improbable D'Artagnan


Le Figaro

presents, in images, an anthology of films of cape and... .of often chipped swords.

Read alsoFrom Queen Margot to the Three Musketeers, an exhibition on Dumas' passion for cinema

  • The Three Musketeers

    by Fred Niblot in 1921 with Douglas Fairbanks

For many the king of Hollywood Douglas Fairbanks remains the cinematographic paragon of d'Artagnan.

With his small mustache, his impressive physique, he will give the young Gascon the portrait of a superhero before the letter.

Paradoxically, more than the drawing that Dumas made of it, it inspired all the Dumasian adapters.

Anyway, it was difficult not to add too much, in 1921, this d'Artagnan was... dumb.

  • The Narrow Musketeer

    by Max Linder in 1922, with Max Linder, Frank Cooke, Harry Mann...

Ridicule does not kill, goes the saying.

So much the better, because Max Linder here allows himself everything and even bad taste.

Two edifying examples: the touching and clever Constance Bonacieux is renamed Constance Bonne-aux-Fieux while the worthy Anne of Austria is renamed Queen Pineapple of Austria... without comment.

  • The Rangers challenge the karatekas

    of Bruno Corbucci in 1973, with Giancarlo Prete, Luigi Montefiori...

Only the Italians invented the spaghetti cloak and dagger.

Forgotten the Gascony of d'Artagnan, the England of Buckingham, the brother of Sergio Corbucci (Navajo Joe) transports us here to the American-Mexican border.

We will not meet Zorro but Chinese people practicing karate... Help!

  • The Three Musketeers

    by Richard Lester in 1973, with Oliver Reed, Raquel Welch, Michael York...

We will have seen everything...Raquel Welch, with a provocative neckline, in the skin of the courageous and pure Constance Bonacieux is the most intrepid audacity of Richard Lester in the cinema.

Moviegoers, however, will find Jean-Pierre Cassel wearing the crown of Louis XIII.

50 years later, his son, Vincent Cassel will return to Dumas in the habit of Athos.

The Three Musketeers

are decidedly immortal.

  • The Four Musketeer Charlots

    followed by

    À nous quatre, Cardinal

    by André Hunebelle in 1974, with the Charlots (Gérard Rinaldi, Gérard Filipelli, Jean Sarrus, Jean-Guy Fechner), Joséphine Chaplin, Paul Préboist, Daniel Ceccaldi...

In the " nanar

" genre

, we border on the masterpiece.

André Hunebelle must have remembered that the brilliant Bourvil, in Planchet, had dazzled his more serious version of 1953. Here then, the servants of the Musketeers become the heroes of the story.

To see in the coldest of winter with a very strong eau-de-vie, it can make you laugh.

  • D'Artagnan

    by Peter Hyams in 2001, with Justin Chambers, Jean-Pierre Castaldi, Catherine Deneuve...

It's a shame Bruce Lee was no longer of this world.

In this version the sword strokes, the feints are replaced by leaps worthy of the princes of kung-fu... Jean-Pierre Castaldi replaces Bourvil in the habit of Planchet.

Let's be nice, he won't forget it.

As for Catherine, we really wonder what she is doing there!

Source: lefigaro

All life articles on 2023-04-04

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