First Knight is an American romantic, fantasy adventure film released on July 7, 1995. The film is loosely based on Arthurian legends, particularly Chretien de Troyes' Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart.
The movie begins in a time of peace, after all the wars have been fought. Arthur is an older King now, and he offers a proposal of marriage to Lady Guinevere of Leonesse. She accepts, and is on her way to Camelot when her carriage is ambushed by Prince Malagant's men (Arthur's former best knight, turned evil). Guinevere fights back and tries to escape, but Malagant's men pursue her. At this time, Lancelot (a fearless wanderer great with a sword) comes to Guinevere's rescue. He then kisses her, but she feels insulted and informs him that she is on her way to be married. Lancelot promises to never kiss Guinevere again until she asks him to. Guinevere swears that she'll never do that, and then her men are heard coming towards them in the forest. So at that, Lancelot rides away.
The pair meet up once again at Camelot, after Lancelot wins a gauntlet (dangerous obstacle course) challenge in the hopes of a kiss from the Queen-to-be. He, however, holds true to his promise and only kisses her hand. Soon after, Guinevere is once again kidnapped by Prince Malagant's men. Lancelot saves her a second time, though, and again tries to win over her heart. Guinevere refuses him, even though they are in love with each other. When Lancelot returns with Guinevere to Camelot, Arthur thanks Lancelot by knighting him despite opposition from the other Knights of the Round Table and from Guinevere. Shortly after, the King is married to Guinevere.
Not long after that, a messenger arrives from Leonesse with the news that Prince Malagant has invaded. In response, King Arthur and his knights ride to defend Leonesse in battle. King Arthur and his forces prove to be victorious, and Lancelot earns the respect from both the other knights and from the villagers he helped to rescue with his proficiency in battle. This causes Lancelot to start to feel guilty about his feeling for the Queen, so he tells Guinevere he is leaving court. Guinevere finally asks Lancelot to kiss her, but the King catches them, and therefore the pair is charged with treason. During the public trial, Malagant attacks yet again. Arthur commands everyone to fight for Camelot, but he is shot with crossbows and taken inside the castle. During the battle between Malagant's forces and King Arthur's people, Lancelot kills Malagant with Arthur's sword. After the the citizens of Camelot emerge victorious, King Arthur names Lancelot as his successor, both to the kingdom and to Guinevere.
Cast and Characters
- Sean Connery as King Arthur
- Richard Gere as Sir Lancelot
- Julia Ormond as Queen Guinevere
- Ben Cross as Prince Malagant
Sean Connery had previously played The Green Knight in Sword of the Valiant (1984) (film)
- Directed by: Jerry Zucker
- Produced by: Hunt Lowry and Jerry Zucker
- Written by: William Nicholson
- Music by: Jerry Goldsmith
- Cinematography by: Adam Greenberg
- Edited by: Walter Murch
- Distributed by: Columbia Pictures
- Budget: 75,000,000
- Worldwide Gross Revenue: 127,600,435