Home » Action movie » The Three Musketeers 1973

The Three Musketeers 1973

The Three Musketeers (1973) starring Oliver Reed, Raquel Welch, Richard Chamberlain, Michael York

Synopsis of The Three Musketeers

The Three Musketeers (1973 version) is a mixture of comedy and adventure. It’s based on the Alexander Dumas classic novel of three musketeers who are “all for one and one for all!”  With, very literally, an all-star cast.


First of all, The Three Musketeers (1973) is a fun, fast-paced, enjoyable film. It’s faithful to the original novel …. Which is quite surprising for Hollywood. It also injects a fair amount of comedy, without detracting from the tension or the overall story.

The acting is first rate. Everyone does an exceptional job. With the possible exception of Raquel Welch. Her job is to look pretty, which she does. She doesn’t have much opportunity to displays her acting ability. The only thing she displays is her figure.

Cast of characters

Michael York in a sword fight - a publicity photo from The Three Musketeers
Michael York in a sword fight – a publicity photo from The Three Musketeers


  • Michael York (Logan’s Run, Island of Dr. Moreau) – d’Artagnan. The central figure. He’s the “country bumpkin” who’s often underestimated. Which his opponents come to regret. He schedules duels with each of the Three Musketeers, one after the other. Which leads them to respect his optimism! He becomes the love interest for the (married) Constance.
  • Oliver Reed (Oliver!, Curse of the Werewolf) – Athos. The older, wiser, despondent, alcoholic leader of the Musketeers. He’s been driven to self-medicating his pain … Due to Milady de Winter.
  • Frank Finlay – Porthos / O’Reilly
  • Richard Chamberlain – Aramis
Oliver Reed as Athos
Oliver Reed as Athos

Everyone else

  • Jean-Pierre Cassel – King Louis XIII of France. A nice enough fellow, sitting on the throne. Cardinal Richelieu subtly influences/controls him. And he’s unaware, initially, of his wife’s infidelity.
  • Geraldine Chaplin – Anne of Austria. The king’s unfaithful wife. She needs the Musketeers’ help to cover her adultery. Since it could lead to a needless war with England. And the deaths of thousands.
  • Charlton Heston (The Greatest Show on Earth) – Cardinal Richelieu. The power behind the throne. A deceptive, scheming chess master. Who uses human beings as living pawns. Beautifully acted by Charlton Heston.
  • Faye Dunaway as tthe evil Milady de WinterrFaye Dunaway – Milady de Winter. The cold, merciless agent of Richelieu. Beautiful, deadly, vain, and unforgiving. She shares a secret with Athos. And wants to destroy him because of it. An excellent performance.
  • Christopher Lee (Horror of Dracula) – Count De Rochefort. Christopher Lee as Count de RochefortRichelieu’s right-hand man. A talented fighter … but not talented enough. Richelieu clearly disrespects him. Another excellent performance.
  • Simon Ward – the Duke of Buckingham. The Queen’s secret lover. He actually does love her. He’s willing to go to war with France to “rescue” her from her husband. But he’s willing to be seduced by Milady anyway … which leads to the theft of incriminating jewelry.
  • Raquel Welch (Fathom) – Constance. Married, but she becomes d’Artagnan’s lover/mistress anyway. She’s also the Queen’s dressmaker. So, she becomes the liaison between the Queen & the Musketeers.

Editorial review of The Three Musketeers courtesy of Amazon.com

Director Richard Lester strikes the perfect balance between slapstick and swashbuckling swordplay in this whimsical adaptation of Alexandre Dumas’s grand adventure. Michael York, all innocence and wide-eyed chivalry as young D’Artagnan, makes quite an impression on his first day in Paris: he challenges all three of the legendary Musketeers to a duel, then joins them in arms against the cardinal’s soldiers.

Geraldine Chaplin as Queen Anne
Geraldine Chaplin as Queen Anne

The worldly rascals, led by Athos (Oliver Reed), who hides his brooding past behind a sarcastic wit, adopt the young hero. Soon D’Artagnan is stealing hearts and stealing food with equal aplomb as he joins their campaign to defend the queen (Geraldine Chaplin) against a plot devised by the scheming cardinal (Charlton Heston) and his cold-hearted accomplice Milady de Winter (Faye Dunaway). Richard Chamberlain‘s Aramis, the trio’s Don Juan and resident man of God, and Frank Finlay’s fun-loving hedonist Porthos round out the Musketeers, while Christopher Lee’s sneering Rochefort executes the cardinal’s wishes as commander of the church’s soldiers.

Other members of this talented cast include Raquel Welch as the beautiful but disaster-prone seamstress to the queen, Spike Milligan as the beauty’s jealous husband, Roy Kinnear as D’Artagnan’s bumbling servant, Planchet, and Jean-Pierre Cassel as the clueless king. George MacDonald Fraser’s rollicking screenplay combines boisterous adventure and roguish humor with marvelous characters, and Lester’s dynamic direction turns it into one of the greatest comic swashbucklers of all time. Followed by The Four Musketeers, which continues the story in a darker vein. –Sean Axmaker


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: