The winner of Big Hollywood’s “Camelot” Blu-ray giveaway did more than express affection for the 1967 musical. Kevin Juguilon mixed in some eloquent phrasing along with blunt details that capture the film’s appeal:
The villain doesn’t do anything wrong. Mordred is clearly the bad guy. He even gets Arthur to admit that it would take a miracle for the bastard to become a knight. But all Mordred does is in the movie is to bring to light the lies and evil of our “heroes.” Mordred himself is a manifestation of Arthur’s peasant fornication. He allies himself with the exiled knights, who were unjustly kicked out because they spoke truth to power, condemning the infidelity of the queen. The death and destruction they fall on Camelot come because of the karmic debt of the king, the queen and Lance.
The lovers CHOOSE not to be with each other. Unlike other romances, where death or fate separates them, Guinevere chooses a life of penance as a nun over both of her loves (Lancelot and Arthur). The affair is not romanticized; there is no Maria/Tony situation.
Beautiful songs about the horrors of infidelity. Lancelot and Guinevere sin and are trapped by that sin (visual nod to the end of “If Ever I Would Leave You”) and are in “twice as much” pain and suffering as they were before they gave in to their passions. Their love isn’t simply forbidden by “society.” It is a love born out of broken trust, and thus forever poisoned by their own lack of self control.
Richard Harris. Not the greatest singer, but all forgivable because of the transformation from naive, ponderous youth to world-weary, despairing king.