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Monty Python's holy grail not dead yet

| Thursday, Aug. 24, 2006

The wacky British brain trust known as Monty Python triumphs as never before or since in "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" (1975).

Its engagement anticipates the Pittsburgh premiere of the blockbuster stage musical "Spamalot" at Benedum Center Sept. 12-Oct. 1.

King Arthur (Graham Chapman) gets no respect in "Holy Grail." He stumbles from castle to castle announcing his name and rank and being told, "You're not my king. I didn't vote for you."

"I told him we already have one," one castle guard boasts to another.

From the mock Scandinavian subtitles through the battle with the dreaded rabbit, it's British spoofery with a high-brow irreverence and low-comedy posture.

You can bust a gut laughing along as the troupe debates whether swallows haul coconuts to England.

One of the funniest bits involves a gruesome duel in which the less-gifted combatant, losing limb after limb, goes into "Had enough?" mode. And then there's the old man who's about to be dumped into a bin of corpses.

"I'm not quite dead," he insists in his feeble voice. "I'm getting better. I thought we could go for a walk."

Joining Chapman are the cheeky lads John Cleese as Lancelot, Michael Palin as Galahad, Eric Idle as Robin, co-director Terry Gilliam as Patsy and co-director Terry Jones as Bedevere.

Additional Information:

Three and a half stars

Co-directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry ones

Stars: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Michael Palin

MPAA rating: PG. At the time of this film's release, the MPAA provided no accompanying reasons for its ratings. The film contains comical bloodshed and sexual innuendoes.

Opens Friday: Regent Square Theater


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