The Daily Cup Film 5 of 365 The Duellists

Welcome to The Daily Cup a movie blog/writing project by Kyle B. Dekker, presented by Hot Chocolate Media. You can read series concept here. The basic rules, Kyle must watch 365 movies in 2018 and write about all of them. 292 of them have to be movies he's never seen before. Thanks for reading.

Ridley Scott is a legendary director and created some of my all time favorite films, (Alien, Blade Runner), and some films I really like (Black Hawk Down, Gladiator). His films merge amazing and breathtaking world building, with incredible art direction, costumes, and cinematography. Even If I don’t like a film by Scott (Kingdom of Heaven, Prometheus) they aren’t boring. I also find it amazingly cool and awesome that after the Kevin Spacey sexual assault revelation he went back and re shot all of Spacey’s scenes in the upcoming All the Money in the World with Christopher Plummer. That is a legendary feat of filmmaking that blows my mind.

With all of that in my brain going into my viewing of Scott’s debut film The Duellists (1977) I was really excited to see it for the first time. I took me a little over 2 hours to make my way through the 100 minute film as I kept falling asleep. It’s is a incredibly well shot film, with amazing costumes, and well choreographed fight scenes that was as boring as getting a new license at the DMV.

At least the costumes look nice

At least the costumes look nice

The movie revolves around two Napoleonic French officers who are both so concerned about the size of their dicks that they have six brutally violent duels over the course of a decade, and the movie ends with neither one dying. The Duellists is a droll love letter to the virtues of toxic masculinity in a historical piece.

The main characters played by Keith Carradine and harvey Keitel never grow, never learn, they don’t have arcs at all. The only thing that changes for either character is their ranks and uniforms. The plot is six pretty cool fight scenes interrupted by incredibly dull conversations of actors with British accents playing French people.

If you are a fight nerd who loves sword choreography or a sucker for amazing period costumes, then this film may have some awesome things for you. I would just look for a super edit that has just the six fight scenes, that will get you the fix you need without forcing you into a nap like stupor. The number one crime a film can commit is to be boring. And this film is guilty.


Movies new to me watched: 5/292

Total movies watched: 5/365

Have your own thoughts or opinions on this movie? Comment below or contact Kyle at or on Twitter at @kbdekker.