In doing research for The Three Musketeers: The Game, we watched many of the classic Three Musketeers movies. We didn’t watch them all (searching IMDb for “Three Musketeers” turns up 54 results) but we watched a lot of them. Here are my favorites:
The Three Musketeers (1973) and The Four Musketeers (1974) – Richard Lester
This is really one movie broken up into two (because they didn’t make four hour long movies back then). These are my personal favorite Musketeer movies. They stay reasonably close to the book and they get the mix of action, drama and comedy just right. Some people think that these movies are too slapstick, but I think that it fits the tone of the book perfectly (The book is funny! Read it again if you don’t think so).
There was actually a sequel to these movies based on Twenty Years After called The Return of The Musketeers (1989)… It didn’t live up to the first two. It was neat in that it’s the only movie based (loosely) on Twenty Years After, and it was actually filmed almost twenty years after the original so the actors had aged appropriately.
The Three Musketeers (1948) with Gene Kelly
This one also follows the book fairly closely. Using his dancing background, Gene Kelly did the best sword fighting in any Musketeer movie… too bad he was almost twenty years older than d’Artagnan is supposed to be. I usually have a hard time watching movies that are this old due to the slow pacing. I didn’t have that problem with this movie at all – maybe in trying to compress the entire book into such a short time they had to speed up the pacing, inadvertently making the it closer to modern movies.