The Duellists

Director: Ridley Scott
Year Released: 1977
Rating: 3.0

As it turns out, not even technically-minded Ridley Scott can completely neuter a Joseph Conrad story. Slightly miscast Keith Carradine and Harvey Keitel (as French soldiers!) carry out a series of duels over fifteen or so years using different swords, on horseback and with pistols for no apparent reason. Conrad's interest in bravery and codes of honor - also evident in Lord Jim - is given due respect here, as the two men, in fighting, are literally driving themselves towards their own potential demise. Fascinating and efficient, if a little sloppy at times.