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One for all and all for fun; EN GARDE FOR A FAMILY CLASSIC.

Byline: MARK ADAMS

THE THREE MuSKETEERS 110mins. Opens Wednesday, October 12

THE STARS Logan Lerman, milla Jovovich, Orlando Bloom, matthew macfadyen, Juno Temple.

THE STORY in 17th Century France, young swordsman D'artagnan (Logan Lerman) travels to Paris with the hope of joining the musketeers, only to find the last three members - athos, Porthos and aramis - in disgrace.

But when the queen (Juno Temple) finds herself at the centre of a plot by the evil Cardinal richelieu (Christoph Waltz) D'artagnan and the musketeers vow to protect her good name and save France.

THE VERDICT good old-fashioned swashbuckling thrills'n'spills, plus an added dose of 3D and special-effects, are the name of the game with this thoroughly enjoyable version of the much-filmed French classic... and a fine adventure romp it is too.

Directed by British filmmaker Paul WS anderson, best known for the resident Evil horror-actions starring his wife milla Jovovich, this colourful, breezy movie is a fun-for-allthe-family affair that will hardly get a thumbs-up from historians, but is nonetheless entertaining nonsense.

mind you, it has a worrying start. in typical movie reboot-style, the film opens in over-the-top fashion in Venice where the three musketeers - athos (macfadyen), Porthos (Stevenson) and aramis (Evans) - are joined by sexy spy m'lady de Winter (Jovovich, there to hone her famous action-woman skills) to steal plans by Leonardo da Vinci detailing how to build a massive balloon galleon. Cue secret passages and hidden traps as the films packs in some cool 3D effects early on.

But then things smartly switch back to the alexandre Dumas classic as it details fresh-faced D'artagnan (Lerman, who starred in Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief) and his plans to fight duels, join the musketeers and romance beautiful young women... in no particular order.

highlights include Orlando Bloom as the dastardly Duke of Buckingham - replete with Elvis quiff and foppish clothes - and charming Juno Temple as the French Queen anne who the musketeers have sworn to aid.

The special-effects are impressive, costumes terrific and the film moves at such a lively pace that you don't mind the silly plot.

The Three musketeers is a cracking piece of old-fashioned swashbuckling entertainment... and all the better for it. ****

CAPTION(S):

Cornered... Luke Evans and Matthew Macfadyen. Inset, Milla Jovovich
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion, Column
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Oct 9, 2011
Words:373
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