The Musketeer

The Musketeer is a 2001 American action-adventure film based on Alexandre Dumas's classic 1844 novel The Three Musketeers, directed and photographed by Peter Hyams and starring Catherine Deneuve, Mena Suvari, Stephen Rea, Tim Roth and Justin Chambers.

The Musketeer
Musketeer imp.jpg
theatrical poster
Directed byPeter Hyams
Written byGene Quintano
Based onThe Three Musketeers
by Alexandre Dumas père
Produced byMoshe Diamant
StarringCatherine Deneuve
Mena Suvari
Stephen Rea
Tim Roth
Justin Chambers
CinematographyPeter Hyams
Edited byTerry Rawlings
Music byDavid Arnold
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
September 7, 2001 (2001-09-07)
Running time
104 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$40 million
Box office$34.6 million

The film features Tsui Hark's regular actor Xin-Xin Xiong as a stunt choreographer.[1] Released just days before the September 11 attacks, it enjoyed box office success in the United States[2][3] despite largely negative reviews from critics.


The young boy, d'Artagnan witnesses the murder of his parents at the hands of Febre, chief henchman of Cardinal Richelieu, d'Artagnan is nearly killed after using his dead father's sword to fight Febre, who is then left with a permanent scar and blind in one eye. D'Artagnan is taken in by Planchet, a family friend and former musketeer, one of the loyal protectors of king Louis XIII.

Fourteen years later, the adult d'Artagnan finds on his arrival in Paris that the musketeers have been disbanded by order of Cardinal Richelieu, who is usurping the king's authority with the help of Febre. Richelieu is also trying to foment hostility between France, England and Spain to gain more political power for himself. D'Artagnan convinces two of the musketeers, Porthos and Aramis, to free the imprisoned head of the musketeers, Treville, thus earning their trust. He takes a room at a Paris boarding house, where he takes a fancy to the chambermaid, Francesca, who is the daughter of the late seamstress to the queen. Febre, on orders from Richelieu, incites a mob to attack the French Royal Palace during a State dinner for Lord Buckingham, a visiting English dignitary. D'Artagnan, with the help of Porthos, Aramis and another musketeer, Athos, saves King Louis, the queen, and Lord Buckingham from being hurt or killed. Afterwards, Francesca recruits d'Artagnan to make a clandestine trip to the north coast of France with the queen to meet with Buckingham in whose honor the state dinner was being held, to keep peace between the two countries. However, d'Artagnan's landlord overhears them and tells Febre.

During the trip, d'Artagnan fights off repeated attacks by Febre's henchmen. He and Francesca become intimate, only to have Febre discover them and kidnap her and the queen. Febre forces the queen to write a letter to Buckingham asking him to meet her at a heavily fortified castle of his choosing, using the queen's ring to convince him of the authenticity of the message. Richelieu finally realizes just how far Febre is willing to go: he means to start a war between France, England and Spain, a war that will cripple France. Knowing that he has lost control of his chief henchman, Richelieu secretly visits d'Artagnan and tells him of Febre's plans and pleads for his help to stop Febre. D'Artagnan agrees, but only because Febre is holding Francesca. D'Artagnan returns to Paris and convinces the surviving musketeers that their responsibility to the crown remains their highest priority, and they join him at the castle where Francesca, the queen, and Lord Buckingham are being held. They charge the castle on horseback, losing several of their number in the process, but the diversion they create allows Planchet to drive his carriage in front of the castle gates below the field of cannon fire from the castle. This enables him to fire a mortar directly into the castle gates.

The remaining musketeers battle the Cardinal's guards, while d'Artagnan engages Febre in an intense duel, finally killing him and avenging the death of his parents. D'Artagnan and the Three Musketeers are given medals for their service, and d'Artagnan covertly threatens Richelieu. At the end, d'Artagnan and Francesca are seen to be married.



The film was initially announced under the title D’Artagnan[4] In May 2000, Gary Oldman and Mena Suvari were in discussions to star in the film.[5]

Box officeEdit

Universal Pictures teamed up Miramax Films to buy the film's North American and U.K. rights for $7.5 million.[6][7] The film debuted with a 10.7 million opening ahead of Two Can Play That Game.[8] In its second weekend the film made $5.3 million.[9] It went on grossing $27 million in Canada and the United States, and it was very profitable for Universal.[10] The film also grossed $7 million in other markets for a combined worldwide gross of $34 million.[11] It was the number-one film in the country during the week of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.

Critical receptionEdit

The film received poor reviews, garnering only 11% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.[12] Many critics cited terrible acting and confusing editing.[citation needed] The reviewer of The New York Times Stephen Holden noticed a cartoon shape of d'Artagnan; an aggressive film editing, that in his opinion, destroys a positive impression from the fight scenes; incompatibility of swordplay and martial arts and also a good authentic view of Paris.[13]

Home mediaEdit

The film was released on DVD on February 26, 2002.[14]


  1. ^ "Xin Xin Xiong". Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  2. ^ Grove, Martin (9 January 2002). "Box Office Analysis: Sept. 9". Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ "'D'Artagnan' to ink Oldman, Suvari". Variety. Retrieved July 30, 2021.
  6. ^ Wong, Lianne. "Mark Wahlberg In The News". Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  7. ^ Grove, Martin (9 January 2002). "Box Office Analysis: Sept. 9". Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  8. ^ "Weekend Box Office Report:Next-Gen 'Musketeer' Captures No. 1; 'Two Can Play That Game' Scores No. 2". September 10, 2001. Archived from the original on November 1, 2001. Retrieved September 21, 2019 – via The Hollywood Reporter.
  9. ^ "Weekend Box Office Report: 'Hardball' Is No. 1 Soft Touch in Tough Times". September 17, 2001. Archived from the original on November 1, 2001. Retrieved October 11, 2019 – via The Hollywood Reporter.
  10. ^
  11. ^ "The Musketeer (2001) - Weekend Box Office". 2001-09-07. Retrieved 2012-02-12.
  12. ^ "The Musketeer". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2012-02-12.
  13. ^ The NY Times, September 7, 2001.
  14. ^ Topel, Fred (February 7, 2002). "Musketeer' Director Lets Film Speak for Itself". Archived from the original on May 4, 2005. Retrieved September 9, 2019.

External linksEdit