Monty Python and the Holy Grail Monty Python and the Holy Grail is a hilarious satire of the Crusades. The movie pokes fun at everything from the woman of the age to monsters to the Knights of the Round Table. It is a perfect example of satire, because it makes use of almost every satirical weapon, although humor is the most commonly used one. I will prove FX Fee ny, a professional movie reviewer wrong when he said, In theory, Hail Grail is a spoof of the legend of King Arthur, but John Cleese, Graham Chapman, Michael Palin, and Co. use the premise mainly as a springboard for their idiosyncratic (and oft-repeated) skits (web).
The movie starts gets going right from the get go with the satirical aspects. King Arthur is seen through a heavy fog riding a horse towards a castle, or so it seems. When he gets closer you realize that he is actually just hopping up and down, while his fellow traveler bangs to coconuts together. When he arrives at the castle he asks the guards at the castle to ask the master of the castle if he would be willing to join the Knights of the Round Table. The guards then ask King Arthur where he got the coconuts he is banging together from, because they only grow in the tropics. This conversation ends up leading nowhere as the two guards argue over whether or not a swallow could carry a coconut across the ocean to Europe.
A perfect example of the use of exaggeration. In the following scene, cold realistic detail is used (this is one of the few times you will the word realistic used to describe any Monty Python movie). A man is seen walking down the street dragging a cart full of corpses, yelling Bring out your dead and ringing a bell. There a dying peopl lying everywhere and, with the exception of the man yelling Bring out your dead, this is actually an accurate depiction of Europe during the time of the bubonic plague. In the very same scene there is a parody to the witch hunts. A group a citizens pushes a woman up to the gallows claiming that she is a witch.
In actuality, the men and women actually dressed her up in a witch outfit and put a carrot on her nose just so they could see her burn. The way the people eventually decide to tell if she is a witch or not is by weighing with a duck because both ducks and witches float on water. The even funnier part is that Arthur asks the knight who came up with the idea to join him, because of his intelligence. Monty Python and the Holy Grail also contains some incongruity. At one point in the movie the King Arthur and the other knights split up.
Sir Robin goes off with his favorite minstrel who sings a song about how brave Sir Robin is. However, when the supposedly brave knight meets up with a giant three headed knight he quickly flees while the heads fight amongst themselves. The minstrels song then changes to, Brave Sir Robin ran away, and Sir Robin continually tells him to shut up, and eventually Robin and the other knights eat him to survive. The movie even includes some irony. For when Sir Launcelot (sic) find a note attached to an arrow from what he thinks is a damsel in distress, he rushes to a castle and slaughters a castle full of unarmed wedding guests.
This is supposed to be one of the heroes in the movie. He finds out that the note was actually sent by a prince who didnt want to get married. About a minute later the prince is pushed out the window by his own father, and Sir Lancelot (sic) is invited in to have a drink after killing tons of innocent people. One of my personal favorite parts of the movie is the intermission right near the end of the movie. All of the sudden the screen changes to a flashing background that says INTERMISSION in big bold letters.
I guess the Monty Python actors werent to crazy about commercials. Exaggeration comes into play as well. Towards the end of the movie each of the knights have to answer three impossible questions so they can cross the bridge of death. When Sir Launcelot (sic) walks up the bridge-keeper asks him: What is your name What is your quest and What is your favorite color I left the two most commonly used satire weapon, humor, for the end because there is no way I could cover all the occurrences, so I will simply provide some examples. The most comical part of the movie is when the knights arrive at the cave where the location of the holy grail is hidden. The cave is guarded by a ferocious killer bunny rabbit.
When the knights see the rabbit the laugh and charge at it. The ravenous bunny kills several of the knights before King Arthur calls the retreat. The knights then blow the bunny to bits with the holy hand grenade. Another funny part was when Arthur encounters a man who calls himself the Black Knight. The knight claims to be invincible and will not let Arthur cross the bridge. Naturally a duel ensues.
Arthur then proceeds to cut off the Black Knights left arm, the knight claims that it is only a flesh wound and the battle continues. As the battle continues, Arthur proceeds to cut off the knights other arm and both of his legs. The knight then wishes to call it a draw and calls King Arthur a coward when he walks away from the maimed Black Knight, who claims himself to be the victor. The purpose of the movie is simply to allow people to view the crusades in a less serious way. If you think of the Crusades in the manner it is presented in the movie, you dont worry so much about the lives that were lost. Its important to be able to view things from a different perspective.
In my opinion, Monty Python and the Holy Grail was the funniest movie ever created. As Professor Betty Grable from RPM said, When one thinks of silliness, one, quite naturally, thinks of Monty Python. (web) Not only is the movie silly though, it is also a great satire. It successfully combines nearly all the weapons of satire. The movie will leave you laughing nonstop, but I cant explain. You just have to see it for yourself. In conclusion, I would just like to reiterate the fact that Monty Python and the Holy Grail is not only a great comedy, but also a great satire.
By combining all the aspects of satire and poking fun at almost anything stupid people did in history, it proves FX Feeney wrong. Monty Python is not merely slapstick comedy, it is a masterpiece. 37 c.