6/15/11

Knightriders (1981) Review

The Games...The Romance...The Spirit...Camelot is a state of mind. 

Instead of featuring one of George A. Romero's zombie classics, I thought I'd give you my opinion of one of his lesser known films, Knightriders.  From the looks of the poster art it seems that this is another cheesy movie to watch only for it's comedic value.  But no my friends, this is an outstanding film. 

I first saw this piece of grindhouse gold during an extended movie marathon with a friend of mine.  Some of you may know him as Zoltan.  He writes reviews here sometimes.  It was already after midnight and I was tired and ready to go home but Zoltan convinced me to put Knightriders on for a little bit just to see how bad it is.  I stayed until the movie was over and it's 145 minutes long.

This film draws you in because it tells a unique and interesting story and makes you genuinely feel for the characters.  A young Ed Harris shows off his acting chops, Tom Savini gets to be in front of the camera instead of doing his usual make-up and special effects and there is even a cameo by Stephen King and his wife. 

Billy Davis (Ed Harris) who is also known as King William to the lords and ladies of his court, leads a traveling renaissance show throughout Western Pennsylvania, but this show is different, for the knights joust from the saddles of their motorcycles. Billy is bound to an Arthurian code of honor and humility which is strained by the financial necessities of the show and the yearning of some of his knights for fame and fortune, especially by the most skilled of the court - the black knight, Morgan (Tom Savini).  Billy even refuses to give an autograph to a kid because that's not what the show is about.  In fact, it's not about the show at all.

He's fighting the dragon.
When a promoter arrives and promises to take the show national, the troupe is split.  After a scuffle, the black knight takes his followers on the path to commercial success and wine, women and song, while King William remains behind with his honor and broken band of traveling knights.

After much infighting among his knights, Morgan realizes that there cannot be two kings and he returns with his men and their fancy new outfits to challenge Billy for the throne.  And of course there's lots of action, romance and probably too many subplots along the way.

Sure it looks silly, but it's worth checking out.  It's another one of my favorites.

Violence Rating/Index: 3 out of 5
Booby Rating/Index: 2.5ish out of 5  - Click to see the nude scenes.







27 comments:

Magixx said...

hell ya!
love everything that's oldschool!
keep it up

BigMike said...

WOW, the actors in this are a little above average for a grindhouse flick

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Any film that has the potential of motorcycle jousting is worth seeing.

chillmastor said...

looks like a funny film

Moobeat said...

how clever

Dejch said...

looks like something 2 watch

Shutterbug said...

Ed Harris looks good in this movie! Now he just looks old. :P

AllenTesch said...

"Young" Ed Harris? He looks exactly the same age.

Mr. Cactus said...

I will have to try out this grindhouse title.

The Angry Lurker said...

Saw this a long time ago and believed it was brilliant.

T. Roger Thomas said...

I have a lot of fond memories of Kit the talking car.

Astronomy Pirate said...

This movie seems like it could be entirely cheesy, but might still be worth checking out just for that.

Bart said...

lol u alrdy made a post about this movie

Henry said...

Ed Harris? Wow, I'm surprised.

A Beer for the Shower said...

I saw the title and was both disappointed/relieved to not see anything about David Hasselhoff here.

BTN Hip Hop said...

incredible director, a true legend

-E- said...

reminds me of the frankie boyle night rider sketch.

Zombie said...

those are some bad ass bikes! lol.

Jay said...

hmmmm...looks sexy!

Kicking Rocks said...

looks really good!

ed said...

ohh a movie i vaguely recognize

thenitefalls said...

Ed Harris is such a pimp!

D4 said...

I remember when you posted this and I wanted to see it but felt like a retard searching for this one specifically. Good times.

Aaron M. Gipson said...

Holy crap I remember this one!!! Man, this blog really takes me back sometimes. With this so it's like somebody took the fad of motocross and Dungeons & Dragons and tried to make an unholy child out of them...

hoaks2 said...

I had never heard of this! It looks awesome... I will see if I can get somebody to watch it with me, for the funs.

Jack of Diamonds said...

dayme, this is getting old now!

That Bastard From Bellingham said...

I haven't seen this movie...but now I think I'm gonna.

I mean, like you the moment I saw that title I was all ready to rip into it like hagfish into a whale carcass. But...but then I read the rest of your review, and now I find myself wondering why I haven't seen this movie yet.

Once I'm back on the saddle with Netflix or movie collecting, this is definitely now on the top of my list of movies to dig into~!! Thanks again, m'man. Pass my thanks also to this friend of yours as well, yeah?

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