Monty Python and the Holy Grail [1975]

Could this be the funniest movie ever made? By any rational measure of comedy, this medieval romp from the Monty Python troupe certainly belongs on the short list of candidates. According to Leonard Maltin's Movie & Video Guide, it's "recommended for fans only," but we say hogwash to that--you could be a complete newcomer to the Python phenomenon and still find this send-up of the Arthurian legend to be wet-your-pants hilarious. It's basically a series of sketches woven together as King Arthur's quest for the Holy Grail, with Graham Chapman as the King, Terry Gilliam as his simpleton sidekick Patsy, and the rest of the Python gang filling out a variety of outrageous roles. The comedy highlights are too numerous to mention, but once you've seen Arthur's outrageously bloody encounter with the ominous Black Knight (John Cleese), you'll know that nothing's sacred in the Python school of comedy. From holy hand grenades to killer bunnies to the absurdity of the three-headed knights who say "Ni--!," this is the kind of movie that will strike you as fantastically funny or just plain silly, but why stop there? It's all over the map, and the pace lags a bit here and there, but for every throwaway gag the Pythons have invented, there's a bit of subtle business or grand-scale insanity that's utterly inspired. The sum of this madness is a movie that's beloved by anyone with a pulse and an irreverent sense of humor. If this movie doesn't make you laugh, you're almost certainly dead. --Jeff Shannon

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1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Who goes there?

King Arthur:
It is I, Arthur, son of Uther Pendragon, from the castle of Camelot. King of the Britons, defeater of the Saxons, Sovereign of all England!

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Pull the other one!

King Arthur:
I am, and this is my trusty servant Patsy. We have ridden the length and breadth of the land in search of knights who will join me in my court at Camelot. I must speak with your lord and master.

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
What? Ridden on a horse?

King Arthur:
Yes!

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
You're using coconuts!

King Arthur:
What?

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
You've got two empty halves of coconut and you're bangin' 'em together.

King Arthur:
So? We have ridden since the snows of winter covered this land, through the kingdom of Mercia, through...

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Where'd you get the coconuts?

King Arthur:
We found them.

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Found them? In Mercia? The coconut's tropical!

King Arthur:
What do you mean?

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Well, this is a temperate zone

King Arthur:
The swallow may fly south with the sun or the house martin or the plover may seek warmer climes in winter, yet these are not strangers to our land?

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?

King Arthur:
Not at all. They could be carried.

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
What? A swallow carrying a coconut?

King Arthur:
It could grip it by the husk!

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
It's not a question of where he grips it! It's a simple question of weight ratios! A five ounce bird could not carry a one pound coconut.

King Arthur:
Well, it doesn't matter. Will you go and tell your master that Arthur from the Court of Camelot is here?

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Listen. In order to maintain air-speed velocity, a swallow needs to beat its wings forty-three times every second, right?

King Arthur:
Please!

1st soldier with a keen interest in birds:
Am I right?

Bridgekeeper:
Stop. Who would cross the Bridge of Death must answer me these questions three, ere the other side he see.

Sir Lancelot:
Ask me the questions, bridgekeeper. I am not afraid.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your name?

Sir Lancelot:
My name is Sir Lancelot of Camelot.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your quest?

Sir Lancelot:
To seek the Holy Grail.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your favourite colour?

Sir Lancelot:
Blue.

Bridgekeeper:
Go on. Off you go.

Sir Lancelot:
Oh, thank you. Thank you very much.

Sir Robin:
That's easy.

Bridgekeeper:
Stop. Who would cross the Bridge of Death must answer me these questions three, ere the other side he see.

Sir Robin:
Ask me the questions, bridgekeeper. I'm not afraid.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your name?

Sir Robin:
Sir Robin of Camelot.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your quest?

Sir Robin:
To seek the Holy Grail.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is the capital of Assyria?

Sir Robin:
I don't know that.

Sir Robin:
Auuuuuuuugh.

Bridgekeeper:
Stop. What... is your name?

Galahad:
Sir Galahad of Camelot.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your quest?

Galahad:
I seek the Grail.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your favourite colour?

Galahad:
Blue. No, yel...

Galahad:
auuuuuuuugh.

Bridgekeeper:
Hee hee heh. Stop. What... is your name?

King Arthur:
It is 'Arthur', King of the Britons.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is your quest?

King Arthur:
To seek the Holy Grail.

Bridgekeeper:
What... is the air-speed velocity of an unladen swallow?

King Arthur:
What do you mean? An African or European swallow?

Bridgekeeper:
Huh? I... I don't know that.

Bridgekeeper:
Auuuuuuuugh.

Sir Bedevere:
How do know so much about swallows?

King Arthur:
Well, you have to know these things when you're a king, you know.

The Dead Collector:
Bring out yer dead.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Here's one.

The Dead Collector:
That'll be ninepence.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I'm not dead.

The Dead Collector:
What?

Large Man with Dead Body:
Nothing. There's your ninepence.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I'm not dead.

The Dead Collector:
'Ere, he says he's not dead.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Yes he is.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I'm not.

The Dead Collector:
He isn't.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Well, he will be soon, he's very ill.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I'm getting better.

Large Man with Dead Body:
No you're not, you'll be stone dead in a moment.

The Dead Collector:
Well, I can't take him like that. It's against regulations.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I don't want to go on the cart.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Oh, don't be such a baby.

The Dead Collector:
I can't take him.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I feel fine.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Oh, do me a favor.

The Dead Collector:
I can't.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Well, can you hang around for a couple of minutes? He won't be long.

The Dead Collector:
I promised I'd be at the Robinsons'. They've lost nine today.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Well, when's your next round?

The Dead Collector:
Thursday.

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I think I'll go for a walk.

Large Man with Dead Body:
You're not fooling anyone, you know. Isn't there anything you could do?

The Dead Body That Claims It Isn't:
I feel happy. I feel happy.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Ah, thank you very much.

The Dead Collector:
Not at all. See you on Thursday.

Large Man with Dead Body:
Right.

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