Monty Python & The Holy Grail (Script)

This is the final shooting script of Monty Python & The Holy Grail, as is found in the out-of-print "Monty Python & The Holy Grail (Book)." (c) 1974 Python (Monty) Pictures, Ltd.





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TITLE IN: Assistant Art Director PHILIP COWLAM Construction Manager BILL HARMAN Carpenters NOBBY CLARK, BOB DEVINE Painter GRAHAM BULLOCK Stagehand JIM N. SAVERY Rigger ED SULLIVAN

then: And mani interesting furry animals


TITLE OUT: With special extra thanks to Charlie Knode, Brian McNully, John Gledhill, Peter Thompson, Sue Cable, Valerie Charlton, Drew Mara, Sue Smith, Charlie Coulter, Iain Monaghan, Steve Bennell, Bernard Belenger, Alpini McAlpine, Hugh Boyle, Dave Taylor, Garry Cooper, Peter Saunders, Less Sheppard, Vaughn Millard, Mamish MacInnes, Terry Mosaic, Bawn O'Beirne Ranelagh. Made entirely on location in Scotland at Doune Castle, Castle Stalker, Killin, Glen Coe, Arnhall Castle, Braklim falls, Sherroffmiur. By Python (Monty) Pictures Ltd., 20, Fitzroy Square, London W1 England. And completed at Twickenham Film Studios, England. Copyright (c) 1974 National Film Trustee Company Lt. All Rights Reserved. then: The producers would like to thank the Forestry Commission Doune Admissions Ltd, Keir and Cawdor Estates, Stirling University, and the people of Doune for their help in the making of this film.

The Characters and incidents portrayed and the names used are fictitious and any similarity to the names, characters, or history of any person is entirely accidental and unintentional. Signed RICHARD M. NIXON Including the majestic m00se TITLE IN: TITLE OUT: Songs NEIL INNIS Additional music DEWOLFE then: A M00se once bit my sister ... TITLE IN: TITLE OUT: Costume Designer HAZEL PETHING then: No realli! She was Karving her initals on the m00se with the sharpened end of an interspace t00thbrush given by Svenge - her brother-in-law - an Oslo dentist and star of many Norwegian m0vies: "The H0t Hands of an Oslo Dentist", "Fillings of Passion", "The Huge M0lars of Horst Nordfink". TITLE OUT: TITLE IN: We apologise for the fault in the subtitles. Those responsible have been sacked. then: Mynd you, m00se bites Kan be pretty nasti ... TITLE OUT: TITLE IN: We apologise again for the fault in the subtitles. Those responsible for sacking the people who have just been sacked have been sacked. FADE OUT: FADE IN: Production Manager JULLIAN DOYLE Assistant Director GERRY HARRISON Special Effects JOHN HORTON Choreography Fight Director & Period Consultant JOHN WALKER Make-up Artists PEARL RASHBASS, PAM LUKE Photography JULLIAN DOYLE Animation Assistance LUCINDA COWELL, KATE HEPBURN M00se Trained by TUTTE HERMSGERV0RDENBR0TB0RDA DISSOLVE TO: Lighting Cameraman TERRY BEDFORD Special M00se Effects OLAF PROT M00se Costumes SIGGI CHURCHILL DISSOLVE TO: Designer ROY SMITH M00se Choreographed by HORST PROT III Miss Taylor's M00ses by HENGST DOUGLAS-HOME M00se trained to mix concrete and sign com- plicated insurance forms by JURGEN WIGG DISSOLVE TO: Editor JOHN HACKNEY M00ses' noses wiped by BJORN IRKESTORM-SLATER WALKER Large m00se on the left half side of the screen in the third scene from the end,given a thorough grounding in Latin, French and "O" Level Geography by BO BENN Suggestive poses for the M00se suggested by VIC ROTTER Antler-care by LIV THATCHER TITLE OUT: TITLE IN: The directors of the firm hired to continue the credits after the other people had been sacked, with it to be known that they have just been sacked. The credits have been completed in an entirely different style at great expense and at the last minute. FADE OUT: TITLE ON YELLOW B.G Executive Producer JOHN GOLDSTONE & "RALPH" The Wonder Llama TITLE OUT: TITLE IN: Producer MARK FORSTARTER Assisted by EARL J. LLAMA MIKE Q. LLAMA III SY LLAMA MERLE Z. LLAMA IX TITLE OUT: TITLE IN: Directed by 40 SPECIALLY TRAINED ECUADORIAN MOUNTAIN LLAMAS 6 VENEZUELAN RED LLAMAS 142 MEXICAN WHOOPING LLAMAS 14 NORTH CHILEAN GUANACOS (CLOSELY RELATED TO THE LLAMA) REG LLAMA OF BRIXTON 76000 BATTERY LLAMAS FROM "LLAMA-FRESH" FARMS LTD. NEAR PARAGUAY and TERRY GILLIAM AND TERRY JONES FADE OUT: ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 1 EXTERIOR - CASTLE WALLS - DAY Mist. Several seconds of it swirling about. silence possibly, atmospheric music. SUPERIMPOSE "England AD 787". after a few more seconds we hear hoofbeats in the distance. They come slowly closer. Then out of the mist comes KING ARTHUR followed by a SERVANT who is banging two half coconuts together. ARTHUR raises his hand. ARTHUR Whoa there! SERVANT makes noises of horses halting, with a flourish. ARTHUR peers through the mist. CUT TO shot from over his shoulder: castle (e.g. Bodium) rising out of the mist. On the castle battlements a SOLDIER is dimly seen. He peers down. SOLDIER Halt! Who goes there? ARTHUR It is I, Arthur, son of Uther Pendragon, from the castle of Camelot. King of all Britons, defeator of the Saxons, sovereign of all England! Pause. SOLDIER Get away! ARTHUR I am... And this my trusty servant, Patsy. We have ridden the length and breadth of the land in search of knights who will join our court at Camelot.. I must speak with your lord and master. SOLDIER What? Ridden on a horse? ARTHUR Yes! SOLDIER You're using coconuts! ARTHUR ...What? SOLDIER You've got two empty halves of coconuts and you're banging them together. ARTHUR (Scornfully) So? We have ridden since the snows of winter covered this land, through the kingdom of Mercea. SOLDIER Where did you get the coconuts? ARTHUR Through ... We found them. SOLDIER Found them? In Mercea. The coconut's tropical! ARTHUR What do you mean? SOLDIER Well, this is a temperate zone. ARTHUR The swallow may fly south with the sun, or the house martin or the plover seek warmer hot lands in winter, yet these are not strangers to our land. SOLDIER Are you suggesting coconuts migrate? ARTHUR Not at all. They could be carried. SOLDIER What? A swallow carrying a coconut? | ARTHUR | Why not? | | SOLDIER | I'll tell you why not ... because a swallow is about eight | inches long and weighs five ounces, and you'd be lucky | to find a coconut under a pound. | ARTHUR It could grip it by the husk ... SOLDIER It's not a question of where he grips it, It's a simple matter of weight - ratios ... A five-ounce bird could not hold a a one pound coconut. ARTHUR Well, it doesn't matter. Go and tell your master that Arthur from the Court of Camelot is here. A Slight pause. Swirling mist. Silence. SOLDIER Look! To maintain Velocity, a swallow needs to beat its wings four hundred and ninety three times every second. right? ARTHUR (irritated) Please! SOLDIER Am I right? ARTHUR I'm not interested. SECOND SOLDIER (who has loomed up on the battlements) It could be carried by an African swallow! FIRST SOLDIER Oh yes! An African swallow maybe ... but not a European swallow. that's my point. SECOND SOLDIER Oh yes, I agree there ... ARTHUR (losing patience) Will you ask your master if he wants to join the Knights of Camelot?! FIRST SOLDIER But then of course African swallows are non-migratory. SECOND SOLDIER Oh yes. ARTHUR raises his eyes heavenwards and nods to PATSY. They turn and go off into the mist. FIRST SOLDIER So they wouldn't be able to bring a coconut back anyway. SECOND SOLDIER Wait a minute! Suppose two swallows carried it together? FIRST SOLDIER No, they'd have to have it on a line. Stillness. Silence again. 2 ANIMATION/LIVE ACTION SEQUENCE - DEATH AND DEVASTATION CUT TO Terry Gilliam's sequence of Brueghel prints. Sounds of strange medieval music. Discordant and sparse. Wailings and groanings. The last picture mixes through into live action. BIG CLOSE UP of contorted face upside down. A leg falls across it. Creaking noise. The bodies lurch away from CAMERA to reveal they are amongst a huge pile of bodies on a swaying cart that is lumbering away from CAMERA. It is pulled by a couple of ragged, dirty emaciated WRETCHES. Behind the cart walks another MAN who looks slightly more prosperous, but only on the scale of complete and utter impoverishment. He wears a black hood and looks sinister. CART DRIVER Bring out your dead! We follow the cart through a wretched, impoverished plague-ridden village. A few starved mongrels run about in the mud scavenging. In the open doorway of one house perhaps we jug glimpse a pair of legs dangling from the ceiling. In another doorway an OLD WOMAN is beating a cat against a wall rather like one does with a mat. The cart passes round a dead donkey or cow in the mud. And a MAN tied to a cart is being hammered to death by four NUNS with huge mallets. CART DRIVER Bring out your dead! There are legs stick out of windows and doors. Two MEN are fighting in the mud - covered from head to foot in it. Another MAN is on his hands in knees shovelling mud into his mouth. We just catch sight of a MAN falling into a well. CART DRIVER Bring out your dead! LARGE MAN Here's one! CART DRIVER Ninepence. BODY I'm not dead! CART DRIVER What? LARGE MAN Nothing... There's your ninepence. BODY I'm not dead! CART DRIVER 'Ere. He says he's not dead. LARGE MAN Yes he is. BODY I'm not! CART DRIVER He isn't. LARGE MAN He will be soon. He's very ill. BODY I'm getting better! LARGE MAN You're not. You'll be stone dead in a few minutes. CART DRIVER I can't take him like this. It's against regulations. BODY I don't want to go on the cart. LARGE MAN Don't be such a baby. CART DRIVER I can't take him. BODY I feel fine. LARGE MAN Do me a favour. CART DRIVER I can't. LARGE MAN Well, can you hang around a couple of minutes. He won't be long. CART DRIVER I promised I'd be at the Robinson's. They've lost nine today. LARGE MAN When's your next round? CART DRIVER Thursday. BODY I think I'll go for a walk. LARGE MAN You're not fooling anyone you know. (to CART DRIVER) Isn't there anything you could do? BODY (singing unrecognisably) I feel happy... I feel happy. The CART DRIVER looks at the LARGE MAN for a moment. Then they both do a quick furtive look up and down the street. The CART DRIVER very swiftly brings up a club and hits the OLD MAN. (Out of shot but the singing stops after a loud bonk noise.) LARGE MAN (handing over the money at last) Thanks very much. CART DRIVER That's all right. See you on Thursday. They turn ... Suddenly all the village fall to their knees, touching forelocks etc. ARTHUR and PATSY ride into SHOT, slightly nose to the air, they ride through without acknowledging anybody. After they pass, the LARGE MAN turns to the CART DRIVER. LARGE MAN Who's that then? CART DRIVER (Grudgingly) I dunno, Must be a king. LARGE MAN Why? CART DRIVER He hasn't got shit all over him. 3 EXTERIOR - DAY ARTHUR and PATSY riding. They stop and look. We see a castle in the distance, and before it a PEASANT is working away on his knees trying to dig up the earth with his bare hands and a twig. ARTHUR and PATSY ride up, and stop before the PEASANT ARTHUR Old woman! DENNIS Man! ARTHUR Man. I'm sorry. Old man, What knight live in that castle over there? DENNIS I'm thirty-seven. ARTHUR What? DENNIS: I'm thirty-seven ... I'm not old. ARTHUR: Well - I can't just say: "Hey, Man!' DENNIS Well you could say: "Dennis" ARTHUR I didn't know you were called Dennis. DENNIS You didn't bother to find out, did you? ARTHUR I've said I'm sorry about the old woman, but from the behind you looked ... DENNIS What I object to is that you automatically treat me like an inferior ... ARTHUR Well ... I AM king. DENNIS Oh, very nice. King, eh! I expect you've got a palace and fine clothes and courtiers and plenty of food. And how d'you get that? By exploiting the workers! By hanging on to outdated imperialist dogma which perpetuates the social and economic differences in our society! If there's EVER going to be any progress ... An OLD WOMAN appears. OLD WOMAN Dennis! There's some lovely filth down here ... Oh! how d'you do? ARTHUR How d'you do, good lady ... I am Arthur, King of the Britons ... can you tell me who lives in that castle? OLD WOMAN King of the WHO? ARTHUR The Britons. OLD WOMAN Who are the Britons? ARTHUR All of us are ... we are all Britons. DENNIS winks at the OLD WOMAN. ... and I am your king .... OLD WOMAN Ooooh! I didn't know we had a king. I thought we were an autonomous collective ... DENNIS You're fooling yourself. We're living in a dictatorship, A self-perpetuating autocracy in which the working classes ... OLD WOMAN There you are, bringing class into it again ... DENNIS That's what it's all about ... If only - ARTHUR Please, please good people. I am in haste. What knight lives in that castle? OLD WOMAN No one live there. ARTHUR Well, who is your lord? OLD WOMAN We don't have a lord. ARTHUR What? DENNIS I told you, We're an anarcho-syndicalist commune, we take it in turns to act as a sort of executive officer for the week. ARTHUR Yes. DENNIS ... But all the decision of that officer ... ARTHUR Yes, I see. DENNIS ... must be approved at a bi-weekly meeting by a simple majority in the case of purely internal affairs. ARTHUR Be quiet! DENNIS ... but a two-thirds majority ... ARTHUR Be quiet! I order you to shut up. OLD WOMAN Order, eh -- who does he think he is? ARTHUR I am your king! OLD WOMAN Well, I didn't vote for you. ARTHUR You don't vote for kings. OLD WOMAN Well, how did you become king, then? ARTHUR The Lady of the Lake, her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held Excalibur aloft from the bosom of the water to signify by Divine Providence ... that I, Arthur, was to carry Excalibur ... That is why I am your king! | | OLD WOMAN | Is Frank in? He'd be able to deal with this one. | DENNIS Look, strange women lying on their backs in ponds handing out swords ... that's no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony. ARTHUR Be quiet! DENNIS You can't expect to wield supreme executive power just 'cause some watery tart threw a sword at you! ARTHUR Shut up! DENNIS I mean, if I went around saying I was an Emperor because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me, people would put me away! ARTHUR (Grabbing him by the collar) Shut up, will you. Shut up! DENNIS Ah! NOW ... we see the violence inherent in the system. ARTHUR Shut up! PEOPLE (i.e. other PEASANTS) are appearing and watching. DENNIS (calling) Come and see the violence inherent in the system. Help, help, I'm being repressed! ARTHUR (aware that people are now coming out and watching) Bloody peasant! (pushes DENNIS over into mud and prepares to ride off) DENNIS Oh, Did you hear that! What a give-away. ARTHUR Come on, patsy. They ride off. DENNIS (in the background as we PULL OUT) did you see him repressing me, then? That's what I've been on about ... 4 EXTERIOR - FOREST - DAY MIX THROUGH to ARTHUR and PATSY riding through the forest. They pass rune stones. We TRACK with them. CLOSE-UPS of their faces as they ride. MIX to another TRACKING SHOT of them riding through the forest. They come to a clearing and stop, looking ahead intently. Their eyes light up. Sound FX of fight. CUT TO their eyeline. A clearing on the other side of which is a rough wooden foot-bridge across a stream. At the start of the bridge a tremendous fight is going on. A huge BLACK KNIGHT in black armour, his face totally masked in a visor, is fighting a slightly smaller KNIGHT in green armour. (Perhaps the GREEN KNIGHT's armour is identical to the BLACK KNIGHT's save for the colour.) CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and PATSY. They watch, growing more impressed as they watch the fight. CUT BACK TO the fight. The GREEN KNIGHT lunges at the BLACK KNIGHT, who avoids the blow with a skillful side-step and parry, knocking the sword out of the GREEN KNIGHT's hand. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and PATSY even more impressed. CUT BACK TO the fight. The GREEN KNIGHT has drawn out a particularly nasty mace or spiked ball and chain, much longer than the BLACK KNIGHT's sword. ARTHUR narrows his eyes, wondering whether the BLACK KNIGHT will survive. CUT BACK to the fight. The GREEN KNIGHT swings at the BLACK KNIGHT, who ducks under the first swing, leaps over the second and starts to close on the GREEN KNIGHT. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and PATSY watching like a tennis match. Sound FX of the fight reaching a climax. Four almighty clangs. Then Silence. CUT BACK to see the GREEN KNIGHT stretched out. The BLACK KNIGHT sheathes his sword. ARTHUR looks at PATSY. Nods and they move forward. CUT BACK TO the BLACK KNIGHT picking up the GREEN KNIGHT above his head and hurling him into the river. ARTHUR and PATSY approach him. ARTHUR You fight with the strength of many men, Sir knight. | BLACK KNIGHT | Who dares to challenge the Black Knight? | | ARTHUR | I do not challenge you. The BLACK KNIGHT stares impassively and says nothing. ARTHUR I am Arthur, King of the Britons. Hint of a pause as he waits for a reaction which dosn't come. ARTHUR is only slightly thrown. ... I seek the bravest and the finest knights in all the world to join me in my court at Camelot ... The BLACK KNIGHT remains silent ARTHUR You have proved yourself worthy. ... Will you join me? Silence. | ARTHUR | A man of your strength and skill would be the chief of all | my knights ... | | BLACK KNIGHT | Never. | ARTHUR You make me sad. But so be it. Come Patsy. As he moves, the BLACK KNIGHT bars the way. BLACK KNIGHT None shall pass. ARTHUR What? BLACK KNIGHT None shall pass. ARTHUR I have no quarrel with you, brave Sir knight, but I must cross this bridge. BLACK KNIGHT Then you shall die. ARTHUR I command you, as King of the Britons to stand aside. BLACK KNIGHT I move for no man. ARTHUR So be it! ARTHUR draws his sword and approaches the BLACK KNIGHT. A furious fight now starts lasting about fifteen seconds at which point ARTHUR delivers a mighty blow which completely severs the BLACK KNIGHT's left arm at the shoulder. ARTHUR steps back triumphantly. ARTHUR Now stand aside worthy adversary. BLACK KNIGHT (Glancing at his shoulder) 'Tis but a scratch. ARTHUR A scratch? Your arm's off. BLACK KNIGHT No, it isn't. ARTHUR (Pointing to the arm on ground) Well, what's that then? BLACK KNIGHT I've had worse. ARTHUR You're a liar. BLACK KNIGHT Come on you pansy! Another ten seconds furious fighting till ARTHUR chops the BLACK KNIGHTS's other arm off, also at the shoulder. The arm plus sword, lies on the ground. ARTHUR Victory is mine. (sinking to his knees) I thank thee O Lord that in thy ... BLACK KNIGHT Come on then. ARTHUR What? He kicks ARTHUR hard on the side of the helmet. ARTHUR gets up still holding his sword. The BLACK KNIGHT comes after him kicking. ARTHUR You are indeed brave Sir knight, but the fight is mine. BLACK KNIGHT Had enough? ARTHUR You stupid bastard. You havn't got any arms left. BLACK KNIGHT Course I have. ARTHUR Look! BLACK KNIGHT What! Just a flesh wound. (kicks ARTHUR) ARTHUR Stop that. BLACK KNIGHT (kicking him) Had enough ... ? ARTHUR I'll have your leg. He is kicked. Right! The BLACK KNIGHT kicks him again and ARTHUR chops his leg off. The BLACK KNIGHT keeps his balance with difficulty. BLACK KNIGHT I'll do you for that. ARTHUR You'll what ... ? BLACK KNIGHT Come Here. ARTHUR What are you going to do. bleed on me? BLACK KNIGHT I'm invincible! ARTHUR You're a looney. BLACK KNIGHT The Black Knight always triumphs. Have at you! ARTHUR takes his last leg off. The BLACK KNIGHT's body lands upright. BLACK KNIGHT All right, we'll call it a draw. ARTHUR Come, Patsy. ARTHUR and PATSY start to cross the bridge. BLACK KNIGHT Running away eh? You yellow bastard, Come back here and take what's coming to you. I'll bite your legs off! 5 EXTERIOR - DAY A village. Sound of chanting of Latin canon, punctuated by short, sharp cracks. It comes nearer. We see it is a line of MONKS ala SEVENTH SEAL flagellation scene, chanting and banging themselves on the foreheads with wooden boards. They pass a group of villagers who are dragging a beautiful YOUNG WOMAN dressed as a witch through the streets. They drag her to a strange house/ruin standing on a hill outside the village. A strange-looking knight stands outside, SIR BEDEVERE. FIRST VILLAGER We have found a witch. May we burn her? ALL A Witch! Burn her! BEDEVERE How do you know she is a witch? ALL She looks like one. Yes, she does. BEDEVERE Bring her forward. They bring her forward - a beautiful YOUNG GIRL (MISS ISLINGTON) dressed up as a witch. WITCH I am not a witch. I am not a witch. BEDEVERE But you are dressed as one. WITCH They dressed me up like this. ALL We didn't, we didn't! WITCH This is not my nose, It is a false one. BEDEVERE takes her nose off. BEDEVERE Well? FIRST VILLAGER ... Well, we did do the nose. BEDEVERE The nose? FIRST VILLAGER And the hat. But she is a witch. ALL A witch, a witch, burn her! BEDEVERE Did you dress her up like this? FIRST VILLAGER ... Um ... Yes ... no ... a bit ... yes... she has got a wart. BEDEVERE Why do you think she is a witch? SECOND VILLAGER She turned me into a newt. BEDEVERE A newt? SECOND VILLAGER (After looking at himself for some time) I got better. ALL Burn her anyway. BEDEVERE Quiet! Quiet! There are ways of telling whether she is a witch. ARTHUR and PATSY ride up at this point and watch what follows with interest ALL There are? Tell up. What are they, wise Sir Bedevere? BEDEVERE Tell me ... what do you do with witches? ALL Burn them. BEDEVERE And what do you burn, apart from witches? FOURTH VILLAGER ... Wood? BEDEVERE So why do witches burn? SECOND VILLAGER (pianissimo) ... Because they're made of wood...? BEDEVERE Good. PEASANTS stir uneasily then come round to this conclusion. ALL I see. Yes, of course. BEDEVERE So how can we tell if she is made of wood? FIRST VILLAGER Make a bridge out of her. BEDEVERE Ah ... but can you not also make bridges out of stone? ALL Ah. Yes, of course ... um ... err ... BEDEVERE Does wood sink in water? ALL No, no, It floats. Throw her in the pond Tie weights on her. To the pond. BEDEVERE Wait. Wait ... tell me, what also floats on water? ALL Bread? No, no, no. Apples .... gravy ... very small rocks ... ARTHUR A duck. They all turn and look at ARTHUR. BEDEVERE looks up very impressed. BEDEVERE Exactly. So... logically ... FIRST VILLAGER (beginning to pick up the thread) If she ... weighs the same as a duck ... she's made of wood. BEDEVERE And therefore? ALL A witch! ... A duck! A duck! Fetch a duck. FOURTH VILLAGER Here is a duck, Sir Bedevere. BEDEVERE We shall use my largest scales. He leads them a few yards to a very strange contraption indeed, made of wood and rope and leather. They put the GIRL in one pan and the duck in another. Each pan is supported by a wooden stave. BEDEVERE checks each pan then ... ARTHUR looks on with interest. BEDEVERE Remove the supports. Two PEASANTS knock them away with sledge hammers. The GIRL and the duck swing slightly but balance perfectly. ALL A witch! A witch! WITCH It's a fair cop. All Burn her! Burn her! Let's make her into a ladder. The VILLAGERS drag the girl away, leaving ARTHUR and BEDEVERE regarding each other admiringly. BEDEVERE Who are you who are so wise in the ways of science? ARTHUR I am Arthur, King of the Britons. BEDEVERE My liege ... forgive me ... ARTHUR looks at PATSY with obvious satisfaction. ARTHUR Good Sir knight, will you come with me to Camelot, and join our number at the Round Table? BEDEVERE My liege, I am honored. ARTHUR steps forward, drawing his sword, with a slight hint of difficulty ARTHUR What is your name? BEDEVERE Bedevere, my Liege. ARTHUR Then I dub you ... Sir Bedevere ... Knight of the Round Table! |6 VARIOUS MONTAGE - ANIMATION | | VOICE OVER | And so King Arthur gathered his knights together ... bringing from all | the corners of the kingdom the strongest and bravest in the land ... | To sit at The Round Table ... | | Under this voice over we have a montage of shots of ARTHUR recruiting | his Knights: | | 1. ARTHUR, PATSY, BEDEVERE and PAGE riding through hillside. | MIX TO: | | 2. A castle. LONG SHOT of SIR GAWAIN standing outside and ARTHUR's | group approaching and shaking hands perhaps. | | 3. MIX TO the group now plus SIR GAWAIN and PAGE (who is weighted | down by an enormous quantity of luggage) riding down by a stream | and approaching SIR HECTOR. ARTHUR dubs him. | | 4. MIX TO the group (now plus HECTOR and PAGE) approaching some group | of buildings or whatever. In the distance SIR ROBIN is being taught | the lute by one of his MUSICIANS. ARTHUR calls and SIR ROBIN | immediately reacts and hands the lute to his MUSICIAN and comes to | join ARTHUR & CO. | | 5. MIX TO SIR GALAHAD surrounded by chickens. He is wearing a carpenters | apron over his immaculate armour and is finishing off a hen-house. | We see the group approach and he throws off the apron and puts down | the hen-house and goes to join them. | | 6. MIX TO the group riding along again. | | 7. MIX TO SIR LAUNCELOT handing a BABY to his WIFE (who has several other | CHILDREN hanging about) and he strides off to join ARTHUR, leaving his | castle, WIFE and CHILDREN. The castle (Eilean Donan) has washing | hanging outside it. A real family castle. There are at least | six kids. | | 8. MIX TO the complete group, i.e. ARTHUR and PATSY, BEDEVERE and PAGE, | GAWAIN and PAGE, HECTOR and PAGE, GALAHAD and PAGE, SIR ROBIN and | six MUSICIANS, LAUNCELOT and PAGE. + +6 CLOSE-UP of a book on which is written: + + THE BOOK OF THE FILM + + VOICE OVER + The wise Sir Bedevere was the first to join King Arthur's knights ... + but other illustrious names were soon to follow ... + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + Sir Launcelot the Brave ... + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + Sir Galahad the Pure ... + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + And Sir Robin-the-not-quite-so-pure-as-Sir-Launcelot ... + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + ... Who had nearly fought the Dragon of Agnor ... + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + ... Who had nearly stood up to to the vicious Chicken of Bristol ... + + Hand turns Page. + + VOICE OVER + ... and who had personally wet himself at the Battle of Badon Hill ... + and the aptly named ... + + Hand turns page. + VOICE OVER + Sir Not-appearing-in-this-film. + + Hand turns page. + + VOICE OVER + Together they formed band whose names and deeds were to be retold + throughout the centuries ... The Knights of the Round Table ... + + A gorilla's hand snatches away the hand. + + Music swells and fades and we MIX THROUGH TO: 7 EXTERIOR - SUNSET Fairly close HEAD-ON SHOT of the KNIGHTS riding along. BEDEVERE and ARTHUR at the front of the group deep in conversation. BEDEVERE And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped. ARTHUR This new learning amazes me, Sir Bedevere. Explain again how sheep's bladders may be employed to prevent earthquakes. BEDEVERE OF course, my Liege ... LAUNCELOT (he points) Look, my liege! They all stop and look. ARTHUR (with thankful reverence) Camelot! CUT TO shot of amazing castle in the distance. Illuminated in the rays of the setting sun. Music. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and the group. They are all staring with fascination. GALAHAD Camelot ... LAUNCELOT Camelot ... GAWAIN (at the back, to PAGE) It's only a model. ARTHUR (turning sharply) Sh! (to the rest) Knights! I bid you welcome to your new home! Let us ride ... to Camelot. 8 INTERIOR - NIGHT CUT TO interior of medieval hall. A large group of armoured KNIGHTS are engaged in a well choreographed song-and-dance routine of the very up-beat 'If they could see me now' type of fast bouncy number. The poorer verses are made clearer by CUTTING to a group of knights actually engaged in the described task while the line itself is sung. They sing: KNIGHTS We're knights of the round table We dance whene'er we're able We do routines and chorus scenes With footwork impeccable. We dine well here in Camelot We eat ham and jam and spam a lot. We're knights of the Round Table Our shows are formidable But many times We're given rhymes That are quite unsingable We're opera mad in Camelot We sing from the diaphragm a lot. Booming basses. A routine where two XYLOPHONISTS play parts of KNIGHTS' armour producing a pleasing effect. In war we're tough and able. Quite indefatigable Between our quests We sequin vests And impersonate Clark Gable It's a busy life in Camelot. SINGLE MAN I have to push the pram a lot. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and BEDEVERE and COMPANY as we had left them. ARTHUR No, on second thought, let's not go to Camelot. KNIGHTS Right! ARTHUR It is a silly place. They set off again almost immediately they are suffused in ethereal radiance and strange heavenly choir music. The PAGES, horselike, take fright for a moment, they whinny and rattle their coconuts. ARTHUR and the KNIGHTS fall on their knees. A holy voice booms out. GOD Arthur! Arthur ... King of the Britons ... They all prostrate themselves even further Oh, don't grovel ... do get up! If there's one thing I can't stand, it's people grovelling!! ARTHUR and COMPANY rise. ARTHUR Sorry ... GOD And don't apologize. Every time I try to talk to someone it's sorry this and forgive me that and I'm not worthy and ... What are you doing now? ARTHUR I'm averting my eyes, Lord. GOD Well, don't. | I really don't know where all this got started. It's like those miserable psalms. they're so depressing. Now knock it of ARTHUR Yes, Lord. GOD Right. Arthur, King of the Britons, you're Knights of the Round Table shall have a task to make them an example in these dark times ... ARTHUR Good idea, O Lord! GOD Course it's a good idea. Suddenly another light glows beside GOD or possibly within the light which is GOD a shape slowly starts to form. Behold ... Arthur ... this is the Holy Grail ... | the Sacred Cup from which Christ drank at the Last Supper ... The form in the bright light is just discernible as an iridescent chalice ... the KNIGHTS gasp. Look well, Arthur ... for it is your sacred task to seek this Grail. It begins to fade. Music crescendo as both lights fade. That is your purpose Arthur ... the Quest for the Holy Grail ... It is gone. All the KNIGHTS are left gasping in awe and wonderment. They all turn and look at ARTHUR. LAUNCELOT A Blessing. A blessing from the lord. | BEDEVERE | Praise be to God! | | An awed pause, then ARTHUR rallies them. | | ARTHUR | We have a task, we must waste no time! To Camelot! | + GALAHAD + God be praised! Stirring music crescendo. They ride off. CUT TO TITLES SEQUENCE Animation: "The Quest For The Holy Grail" After titles CUT TO: 9 EXTERIOR - CASTLE - DAY MIX THROUGH one or two shots of them on their way again, until they approach a terrific castle (a little one would do too). They advance quite close to the castle and draw themselves into a line. At a signal from ARTHUR the two PAGES step forward and give a brief fanfare. A MAN appears on the battlements. ARTHUR addresses him. ARTHUR Hello. MAN 'Allo. Whoo is eet? ARTHUR I am King Arthur and these are the Knights of the Round Table. Whose castle is this? MAN This is the castle of of my master, Guy de Loimbard. ARTHUR Please go and tell your master that we have been charged by God with a sacred quest, and if he will give us food and shelter for this night he can join us in our quest for the Holy Grail. MAN Well, I'll ask him, but I don't think he'll be very keen. He's already got one, you see? ARTHUR What? GALAHAD He says they've already got one! They are stunned. ARTHUR Are you sure he's got one? MAN Oh yes. It's very nice + + CUT TO BATTLEMENTS. THE TAUNTER (MAN) turns to some others. + + MAN + I told him we already got one. + + They all giggle. + ARTHUR Well ... can we come up and have a look? MAN Of course not! You are English pigs. ARTHUR Well, what are you then? MAN I'm French. Why do think I have this outrageous accent, you silly king. GALAHAD What are you doing in England? MAN Mind your own business. ARTHUR If you will not show us the Grail we shall storm your castle. Murmurs of assent. MAN You don't frighten us, English pig-dog! Go and boil your bottoms, son of a silly person. I blow my nose on you, so-called Arthur-king, you and your silly English K...kaniggets. He puts hands to his ears and blows a raspberry. GALAHAD What a strange person. ARTHUR Now look here, my good man! MAN I don't want to talk to you, no more, you empty-headed animal, food trough wiper. I fart in your general direction. You mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries. GALAHAD Is there someone else up there we could talk to? MAN No. Now go away or I shall taunt you a second time. ARTHUR Now this is your last chance. I've been more than reasonab... + + MAN + Fetchez la vache! + + GUARD + Quoi? + + MAN + Fetchez la vache! + CUT BACK TO battlements. A cow is led out of a stall. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR. ARTHUR Now that is my final offer. If you are not prepared to agree to my demands I shall be forced to take ... Oh Christ! A cow comes flying over the battlements, lowing aggressively. The cow lands on GALAHAD'S PAGE, squashing him completely. | | ROBIN | What a cruel thing to do. | | BEDEVERE | (Choking back tears) | It hadn't even been milked. | ARTHUR Right! Knights! Forward! ARTHUR leads a charge toward the castle. Various shots of them battling on, despite being hit by a variety of farm animals. ARTHUR (as the MAN next to him is squashed by a sheep) Knights! Run away! Midst echoing shouts of "run away" the KNIGHTS retreat to cover with the odd cow or goose hitting them still. The KNIGHTS crouch down under cover. LAUNCELOT The sods! I'll tear them apart. ARTHUR (restraining LAUNCELOT from going out and having a go) No! BEDEVERE I have a plan sir. CUT BACK TO battlements of castle. FRENCH SENTRIES suspiciously peering towards the English lines. Wind whistles. Shot of the empty scrubland or undergrowth or woodland around the castle. Emptiness. Wind. More shots of the FRENCH SENTRIES peering into the dusk. | As night falls. MIX THROUGH TO night On the battlements a brazier burns or | torches on the wall as the SENTRIES peer into the dark. Shots of the | woodland with fires burning where the English lines are. During all this the sounds of extensive carpentry have possibly been herd, followed by silence, followed by renewed outbursts or activity. CLOSE-UP FRENCH looking very nervous. Dawn breaking. Shot of woodland. Nothing. Wind. Dawn still breaking. Shots of the FRENCH. They suddenly hear something. A faintly detectable squeaking which is getting louder. CUT TO WIDE SHOT of castle and woodland. Squeaking getting louder. Shot of the FRENCH TAUNTER pointing. WIDE SHOT again. The squeaking gets louder an enormous twenty-foot-high wooden rabbit is wheeled out of the undergrowth into the open space in front of the castle. The ENGLISH scuttle back into the undergrowth. The rabbit has a large red bow tied round it and a rather crudely written label, which reads "Pour votres amis Francais". The CHIEF TAUNTER looks at it, narrowing his eyes. Then he turns and leaves battlements. CUT TO ARTHUR and COMPANY watching from the bushes. The main gate of the castle opens a little and the CHIEF TAUNTER's head sticks out, then another Froggie head, then another. They mutter to each other in French, look rather pleased, then rush out and start to pull the giant rabbit in. CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and COMPANY behind some bushes watching. ARTHUR Now what happens? BEDEVERE Well now, Launcelot, Galahad, and I wait until nightfall and then leap out of the rabbit and take the French by surprise, not only by surprise but totally unarmed! ARTHUR Who ... Who breaks out? BEDEVERE Er ... We ... Launcelot, Galahad, and I ... Er ... leap out of the rabbit and ... LAUNCELOT covers his eyes. BEDEVERE Look, if we were to build a large wooden badger... ARTHUR cuffs him. ARTHUR looks at the battlements. There is a loud twang. Look of horror. The rabbit comes sailing over the battlements. ARTHUR Run away! More shouts. Run away! | SIR GAWAIN | (to his PAGE as they run away) | It's only a model. | | ARTHUR | Sh! They continue to retreat. The rabbit lands on GAWAIN'S PAGE (who is already weighed down by enormous quantity of luggage). 10 EXTERIOR - CASTLE WALLS - DAY CUT TO a MAN in modern dress standing outside a castle. He speaks straight to CAMERA in a documentary kind of way. SUPERIMPOSE CAPTION: A Very Famous Historian. HISTORIAN'S SPEECH Defeat at the castle seems to have utterly disheartened King Arthur ... The ferocity of the French taunting took him completely by surprise and Arthur became convinced that a new strategy was required if the quest for the Holy Grail were to be brought to a successful conclusion. Arthur, having consulted his closest knights, decided that they should separate, and search for the Grail individually. Now, this is what they did. No sooner... A KNIGHT rides into shot and hacks him to the ground. He rides off. We stay for a moment on the glade. A MIDDLE-AGED LADY in a C. & A. twin-set emerges from the trees and looks in horror at the body of her HUSBAND. MRS HISTORIAN FRANK! CUT TO animated frame, with the words "The Tale of Sir Robin" on it. Pleasant pastoral music. MIX THROUGH TO: + VOICE: "The Tale Of Sir Robin" 11 EXTERIOR - GLADE - DAY A KNIGHT is trotting along through a wooden sun-dapled glade, followed by his trusty PAGE banging the usual half coconuts. As we see them approach we hear the beautiful lilting sound of medieval music, and see that the KNIGHT is followed by a small retinue of MUSICIANS in thirteenth-century courtly costume, one sings, and plays the tambourine, one bangs at a tabor (A small drum O.E.D) and one plays the pipes. The KNIGHT looks very proud and firm as we hear the first part of the song, but the combination of the lyrics and the large signs they pass, start to have their effect ... SONG: Bravely bold Sir Robin, rode forth from Camelot, He was not afraid to die, Oh Brave Sir Robin, He was not at all afraid to be killed in nasty ways Brave, brave, brave, brave Sir Robin. He was not in the least bit scared to be mashed into a pulp Or to have his eyes gouged out and his elbows broken; To have his kneecaps split and his body burned away And his limbs all hacked and mangled, brave Sir Robin. His head smashed in, and his heart cut out, And his liver removed, and his bowels unplugged, And his nostrils raped, and his bottom burned off, And his penis split ... and his ... ROBIN Er, That's ... That's enough music for a while, lads. It Looks as though like there's dirty work afoot. SINGERS Brave, Sir Rob ... ROBIN Shut up. They have ridden past the following signs, all in triplicate:- +------------------------------------------------------+ | CAMELOT 43 CERTAIN DEATH I | | CAMELOT 43 CERTAIN DEATH I | | CAMELOT 43 CERTAIN DEATH I | +------------------------------------------------------+ +------------------------------------------------------------+ | BEWARE GO BACK DEAD PEOPLE ONLY | | BEWARE GO BACK DEAD PEOPLE ONLY | | BEWARE GO BACK DEAD PEOPLE ONLY | +------------------------------------------------------------+ 12 EXTERIOR - GLADE - DAY They now pass three KNIGHTS impaled to a tree. With their feet off the ground, with one lance through the lot of them, they are skewered up like a barbecue. Then they pass three KNIGHTS sitting on the ground with one enormous axe through their skulls. They look timorous. | Then a huge tree is absolutely packed with MAIDENS tied to it. They all | look fed up. SIR ROBIN calls out cheerfully as he passes. | | ROBIN | Morning. | | ONE LADY | Bye. | SIR ROBIN rides on a little way with the music building up enormous and terrifying tension, until suddenly there standing before him is an enormous THREE-HEADED KNIGHT. THREE HEADS Halt! Who art thou? SINGERS He is brave Sir Robin, brave Sir Robin, who ... ROBIN (to SINGERS) Shut up. Oh, nobody really. just passing through. THREE HEADS What do you want? SINGERS To fight and ... ROBIN Shut up. Nothing really. just to pass through, good Sir knight. THREE HEADS I'm afraid not. | This is my bit of the forest. Find your own bit. ROBIN I am a Knight of King Arthur's Round Table. | I seek the Holy Grail - Stand aside and let me pass. THREE HEADS You are a Knight of the Round Table? ROBIN I am. From now on the THREE HEADS speak individually. SECOND HEAD Shit. FIRST HEAD In that case I shall have to kill you. SECOND HEAD Shall I? THIRD HEAD Oh, I don't think so. SECOND HEAD I'm not sure. MIDDLE HEAD (to FIRST) What do I think? LEFT HEAD I think kill him. | | SECOND HEAD | I'm still not sure. | | THIRD HEAD | All right. How many of me think I should kill him? | | FIRST HEAD | I do. | | THIRD HEAD | One. | | SECOND HEAD | That's not a quorum. | | FIRST HEAD | It is if I'm the Chairman. | | THIRD HEAD | Oo, it's not. | | SECOND HEAD | I'm the Chairman this week. | | FIRST HEAD | You're not. | | SECOND HEAD | Look, it'll make it much simpler if I vote with me. | | THIRD HEAD | To kill him. | | SECOND HEAD | Yeah. | | THIRD HEAD | (tuts) | Oh, damn. | | FIRST HEAD | (to SIR ROBIN) | Knight, I have decided to kill you. | | THIRD HEAD | With one absenting. | | FIRST HEAD | Knight, I have decided to kill you with one absenting. | | THIRD HEAD | (to SIR ROBIN) | Sorry about this but I have to be fair. | | ROBIN | Oh, that's all right. So you are going to kill me with your big axe. | | FIRST HEAD | Er no, with my sword. | | SECOND HEAD | Dagger. | | THIRD HEAD | Mace is quicker. | | FIRST HEAD | No, no, the sword, it's easier. | | THIRD HEAD | He said axe. | | ROBIN | Look, hurry up six eyes, or I shall cut your head off. | | THIRD HEAD | (to SIR ROBIN, referring to FIRST HEAD) | For God's sake, CUT that one off, and do us all a favour. | | FIRST HEAD | What do you mean? | | THIRD HEAD | Yapping on all the time. | | SECOND HEAD | You're lucky, you're not next to him. | | THIRD HEAD | What do you mean? | | SECOND HEAD | You snore. | | THIRD HEAD | Oo, lies. Anyway, you've got bad breath. | | SECOND HEAD | (aspirating heavily) | I haven't. | | Both THIRD and FIRST HEADS turn away slightly, making faces. | | SECOND HEAD | It's not my fault. It's what you both eat. | | FIRST HEAD | Look, stop this bitching. We've got a knight to kill. | | SECOND HEAD | He's buggered off. | | THIRD HEAD | So he has. He's scarpered. | | FIRST HEAD | That's all your fault. | | THIRD HEAD | No, it's not. | | FIRST HEAD | (swipes at himself) | Take that. | | SECOND HEAD | Ow. | | FIRST HEAD | I'm sorry. | | THIRD HEAD | 'Ere, stop it. I'll teach you. | | The BODY starts laying into itself with sword and mace, while the HEADS | argue and shout with pain. We PAN gently across to the MAIDENS on their | tree. They are still very fed up. | | MAIDEN | I suppose we're lucky he's only got three heads. | | LOVELY | Chance would be a fine thing. + + THIRD HEAD + Oh! let's be nice to him. + + FIRST HEAD + Oh shut up. + + ROBIN + Perhaps I could ... + + FIRST HEAD + Oh! quick! get the sword out I want to cut his head off. + + THIRD HEAD + Oh, cut your own head off. + + SECOND HEAD + Yes - do us all a favour. + + FIRST HEAD + What? + + THIRD HEAD + Yapping on all the time. + + SECOND HEAD + You're lucky, you're not next to him. + + THIRD HEAD + What do you mean? + + SECOND HEAD + You snore. + + THIRD HEAD + Ooh, lies! anyway you've got bad breath. + + SECOND HEAD + Well only because you don't brush my teeth ... + + THIRD HEAD + Oh! stop bickering and let's go and have tea and biscuits. + + FIRST HEAD + All right! All right! We'll kill him first and then have tea + and biscuits. + + SECOND HEAD + Yes. + + THIRD HEAD + Oh! not biscuits ... + + FIRST HEAD + All right! All right! not biscuits - but lets kill him anyway ... + + WIDE-SHOT THE 3-HEADED KNIGHT is alone. + + SECOND HEAD + He's buggered off! + + THIRD HEAD + So he has! He's scarpered. 13 EXTERIOR - GLADE - DAY Quick sequence of SIR ROBIN. The music is jolly and bright, as if triumphant. ROBIN is not at all happy with the lyrics. SINGERS Brave Sir Robin ran away. ROBIN I didn't. SINGERS Bravely ran away, away. ROBIN No, no, no. SINGERS When danger reared its ugly head, He bravely turned his tail and fled Yes, Brave Sir Robin turned about And gallantly he chickened out Bravely taking to his feet He beat a very brave retreat Bravest of the brave Sir Robin Petrified of being dead Soiled his pants then brave Sir Robin Turned away and fled. They disappear into distance. ANIMATION: "The Tale Of Sir Galahad" 14 EXTERIOR - STORM - FOREST - DUSK As the storm rages we pick up GALAHAD forcing his way through brambles and over slippery rocks. Progress is hard. He pauses and at this moment we hear the howling of wolves. GALAHAD turns, then hurries onward even more urgently. Another louder, closer howl is herd and GALAHAD stumbles and falls heavily. Though obviously injured he bravely struggles forward a little and regains his feed reacting with pain. More louder closer howling. He grips his sword valiantly and as he glances around a flash of lightning reveals the silhouette of a huge terrifying castle, perhaps looking rather derelict. He makes up his mind in an instant and stumbles manfully toward it. More louder howling. He reaches the forbidding and enormous doors of the castle and beats on the doors with the handle of his sword, looking over his shoulder the while. Pause. He beats again, shouting: GALAHAD Open. Open the doors. In the name of King Arthur. Open the doors. | I am Sir Galahad, a knight of the Round Table. | | Some suitable noises are herd inside. | | I am on a quest for the Holy Grail. I seek shelter. Some rattling chainy noises come from inside with huge bolts being drawn. The wolves' howling is very close. As the door creaks open GALAHAD steps quickly inside. 15 INTERIOR - CASTLE - NIGHT From inside we see GALAHAD enter, wiping the rain from his eyes, and turn as the door crashes behind him. GALAHAD turns to the door reacting to the fact he is trapped. ZOOT (OUT OF VISION) Hello! GALAHAD turns back. We see from his POV the lovely ZOOT standing by him smiling enchantingly and a number of equally delectable GIRLIES draped around in the seductively poulticed room. They look at him smilingly and wave. GIRLIES Hello! ZOOT Welcome, gentle Sir knight, welcome to the Castle Anthrax. GALAHAD The Castle Anthrax? ZOOT Yes. It's not a very good name, is it? But we are nice and we shall attend to your every ... every need! GALAHAD Er ... + You are the keepers of the Holy Grail? ZOOT The what? But you are tired and you must rest awhile. Midget! Crapper! MIDGET AND CRAPPER Yes, O Zoot? ZOOT Prepare a bed for our guest. MIDGET AND CRAPPER (grovelling with delight) Oh thank you, Zoot, thank you, thank you. ZOOT Away varletesses! (to GALAHAD) The beds here are warm and soft and very, very big. GALAHAD Well, look er, I ... ZOOT What is your name, handsome knight? GALAHAD Er ... Sir Galahad... the Chaste. ZOOT Mine is Zoot. Just Zoot (she is very close to him for a moment) But come. She turns away and leads him towards a door leading to a corner leading to the bedchamber GALAHAD Well Look, I'm afraid I really ought to be ... ZOOT Sir Galahad!! There is a gasp from the other GIRLS ZOOT You would not be so ungallant as to refuse our hospitality. GALAHAD looks at the other GIRLS. They are clearly on the verge of being offended. GALAHAD Well ... ZOOT (she moves off and GALAHAD unwillingly follows) I'm afraid our life must seem very dull and quiet compared to yours. We are but eightscore young blondes, all between sixteen and nineteen-and-a-half, cut off in this castle, with no one to protect us. Oooh. It is a lonely life ... bathing ... dressing ... undressing ... making exciting underwear.... They reach the end of the corridor and enter the bedchamber. ZOOT turns ZOOT We are just not used to handsome knights ... (she notices him limping) But you are wounded! GALAHAD No, It's nothing! ZOOT You must see the doctors immediately. (she claps again) You must lie down. She almost forces him to lie on the bed as PIGLET and WINSTON enter the room. They are equally beautiful and dressed exotically. They approach GALAHAD. PIGLET Well, what seems to be the trouble? GALAHAD They're doctors? ZOOT They have a basic medical training, yes. Now you must try to rest. Dr. Winston! Dr. Piglet! Practice your art!! WINSTON Try to relax. GALAHAD No look, really, this isn't nescess ... PIGLET We must examine you. GALAHAD There's nothing wrong with ... that. PIGLET (slightly irritated) Please ... we are doctors. ZOOT reappears. GALAHAD tries for one brief moment to relax. Then there is a sharp boing from the lower part of his armour. WINSTON glances quickly in the appropriate direction as GALAHAD sits up and starts getting off the bed and collecting his armour, saying: GALAHAD No, no, this cannot be. I am sworn to chastity! PIGLET Back to your bed! At once! GALAHAD I'm sorry, I must go. GALAHAD hurries to the door and pushes through it. As he leaves the room we CUT TO the reverse to show that he is now in a room full of bathing and romping GIRLIES, all innocent, wide-eyed and beautiful. They smile enchantingly at him as he tries to keep walking without being diverted by the lovely sights assaulting his eyeballs. He nods to them stiffly once or twice and then his eye catches a particularly stunning YOUNG LADY. He visibly gulps with repressed emotion and cannot resist saying: | | GALAHAD | Good evening ... Ah, Zoot! Er ... | | DINGO | No, I am Zoot's identical twin sister, Dingo. | | GALAHAD | Oh. Well, I'm sorry, but I must leave immediately. | | DINGO | (very dramatically) | No! Oh, no! Bad ... bad Zoot. | | GALAHAD | Er, why? | | DINGO | She has been lying again ... she told us you had promised to | stay for ever! | | GALAHAD | Oh! + + GALAHAD + Oh ... will you excuse me? + + DINGO + Where are you going? + + GALAHAD + I have seen the Grail! I have seen it - here in this castle! + + DINGO + No! Oh, no! Bad ... bad Zoot! + + GALAHAD + What is it? + + DINGO + Bad, wicked, naughty Zoot! She has been setting fire to our beacon, + which - I have just remembered - is grail-shaped ... It is not the + first time we've had this problem. + + GALAHAD + It's not the real Grail? + + DINGO Wicked wicked Zoot ... she is a bad person and she must pay the penalty. And here in Castle Anthrax, we have but one punishment ... you must tie her down on a bed ... and spank her. Come! GIRLS A spanking! A spanking! DINGO You must spank her well and after you have spanked her you may deal with her as you like and then ... spank me. AMAZING And spank me! STUNNER And me. LOVELY And me. DINGO Yes, yes, you must give us all a good spanking! GIRLS A spanking. A spanking. There is going to be a spanking tonight. DINGO And after the spanking ... the oral sex. GALAHAD Oh, dear! Well, I... GIRLS The oral sex ... The oral sex. GALAHAD Well, I suppose I could stay a BIT longer. At this moment there is a commotion behind and SIR LAUNCELOT and CONCORD, possibly plus GAWAIN, burst into the bathing area with swords drawn and form themselves round SIR GALAHAD threatening the GIRLS. LAUNCELOT Sir Galahad! GALAHAD Oh ... hello ... LAUNCELOT Quick! GALAHAD Why? LAUNCELOT You are in great peril. DINGO No he isn't LAUNCELOT Silence! Foul temptress! GALAHAD Well, she's got a point. LAUNCELOT We'll cover your escape! GALAHAD Look - I'm fine! GIRLS Sir Galahad! He threatens DINGO. GALAHAD No. Look, I can tackle this lot single-handed! GIRLS Yes, yes, let him Tackle us single-handed! LAUNCELOT Come Sir Galahad, quickly! GALAHAD No, really, I can cope. I can handle this lot easily! DINGO Yes, let him handle us easily. LAUNCELOT No sir. Quick! He starts pulling GALAHAD away. GALAHAD No, please. Please! I can defeat them! There's only a hundred. GIRLS He will beat us easily. We haven't a chance. DINGO Oh shit! By now LAUNCELOT and CONCORDE have hustled GALAHAD out of the bathing area and are running through the outside door. LAUNCELOT We were in the nick of time. You were in great peril. GALAHAD (dragging his feet somewhat) I don't think I was. LAUNCELOT You were, Sir Galahad, You were in terrible peril. GALAHAD Look, let me go back in there and face the peril? LAUNCELOT It's too perilous. They are right outside the castle by now. GALAHAD Look, it's my duty as a knight to try and sample as much peril as I can. LAUNCELOT No, no, we must find the Grail. The thunderstorm is over. A bunch (sic) of PAGES are tethered to a tree with more MEN waiting. Their tethers are untied and the PAGES start banging away with their coconuts. GALAHAD is swept along with them as they ride off. GALAHAD Oh, let me go and have a bit of peril? LAUNCELOT No. It's unhealthy. GALAHAD ... I Bet you're gay. LAUNCELOT No, I'm not. GAWAIN or CONCORDE gives a knowing glance at LAUNCELOT. VOICE comes in as they ride off. VOICE OVER Sir Launcelot had saved Galahad from almost certain temptation but they were still lost, far from the goal of their search for the Holy Grail. Only Bedevere and King Arthur himself, riding day and night, had made any progress. 16 ANIMATION/LIVE ACTION ARTHUR and BEDEVERE in the depths of a dark forest with an old blind SOOTHSAYER. He lies in a broken down old woodman's hut. ARTHUR And this "Enchanter" of whom you speak, he has seen the grail? The SOOTHSAYER laughs forbiddingly, adding to the general spookiness of this encounter. ARTHUR Where does he live? (he stares into the blind eyes of the OLD MAN) Old man ... where does he live ... SOOTHSAYER He knows of a cave ... a cave which no man has entered. ARTHUR And ... the Grail ... The Grail is there? The BLIND MAN laughs again to himself. SOOTHSAYER There is much danger ... for beyond the cave lies the Gorge of Eternal Peril which no man has ever crossed. ARTHUR But the Grail ... where is the Grail!? SOOTHSAYER Seek you the Bridge of Death ... ARTHUR The Bridge of Death? ... which leads to the Grail? The OLD MAN laughs sinisterly and mockingly. They look down and he is gone. They stand up. Suddenly behind them is a noise. They turn sharply in the door of the little hut is a cat. It miaows and is gone. They slowly back out of the hut. As they touch the doorposts they just flake away into dust. The whole hut is rotten. It collapses Spooky music. They are thoroughly shaken, and they begin to hear noises of people moving in the forest around them. They start to back cautiously away from the hut, suddenly there is heavy footfall behind them. They turn in fear and: Sudden CUT TO BIG CLOSE-UP of a frightening black-browed evil face. TALL KNIGHT OF NI Ni! ARTHUR and BEDEVERE recoil in abject fear. PATSY rears up with coconuts. ARTHUR (to PATSY) Easy ... boy, easy ... ARTHUR peers into the darkness. Who are you? SIX VOICES FROM DARKNESS NI! ... Peng! ... Neeee ... Wom! An extraordinary TALL KNIGHT in all black (possibly John with Mike on his shoulders) walks out from the dark trees. He is extremely fierce and gruesome countenance. He walks towards KING ARTHUR and PATSY, who are wazzing like mad. (Salopian slang, meaning very scared. almost to the point of wetting oneself, e.g. before an important football match or prior to a postering. Salopian slang meaning a beating by the school praeposters. Sorry about the Salopian slant to this stage direction - Ed.) ARTHUR (wazzed stiff) Who are you? TALL KNIGHT We are the Knights Who Say "Ni"! BEDEVERE No! Not the Knights Who Say "Ni"! TALL KNIGHT The same! ARTHUR Who are they? TALL KNIGHT We are the keepers of the sacred words. NI ... Peng ... and Neee ... Wom! BEDEVERE Those who hear them seldom live to tell the tale. TALL KNIGHT The Knights Who Say "Ni"! demand a sacrifice. ARTHUR (to the TALL KNIGHT) Knights Who Say "Ni" ... we are but simple travellers. We seek the Enchanter who lives beyond this wood and who ... TALL KNIGHT NI! ARTHUR (recoiling) Oh! TALL KNIGHT NI! NI! ARTHUR (he cowers in fear) Oh! TALL KNIGHT We shall say Ni! again to you if you do not appease us. ARTHUR All right! What do you want? TALL KNIGHT We want ... a shrubbery! ARTHUR A what? TALL KNIGHT Ni! Ni! Ni ... Peng ... Nee ... Wum! The PAGES rear and snort and rattle their coconuts. ARTHUR All right! All right! ... No more, please. We will find you a shrubbery ... TALL KNIGHT You must return here with a shrubbery or else ... you shall not pass through this wood alive! ARTHUR Thanks you, Knights Who Say Ni! You are fair and just. We will return with a shrubbery. TALL KNIGHT One that looks nice. ARTHUR Of course. TALL KNIGHT And not too expensive. ARTHUR Yes ... TALL KNIGHT Now - go! ARTHUR and BEDEVERE turn and ride off. OTHER KNIGHTS Ni! Ni! Shouts of "Ni" and "Peng" ring behind them. 17 EXTERIOR - DAY CUT BACK TO the HISTORIAN lying in the glade. His WIFE, who has been kneeling beside him, rises as two POLICE PATROLMEN enter the glade. They bend over her HUSBAND. One takes out a notebook. CUT TO and animated title - "The Tale of Sir Launcelot" 18 INTERIOR - PRINCE'S ROOM IN CASTLE - DAY A young, quite embarrassingly unattractive PRINCE is gazing out of a castle window. His FATHER stands beside him. He is also looking out. The PRINCE wears a long white undershirt (like a night shirt). FATHER One day, lad, all this will be yours ... PRINCE What - the curtains? FATHER No! Not the curtains, lad ... All that ... (indicates the vista from the window) all that you can see, stretched out over the hills and valleys ... as far as the eye can see and beyond ... that'll be your kingdom, lad. PRINCE But, Mother ... FATHER Father, lad. PRINCE But, Father, I don't really want any of that. FATHER Listen, lad, I built this kingdom up from nothing. All I had when I started was swamp ... other kings said I was daft to build a castle on a swamp, but I built it all the same ... just to show 'em. It sank into the swamp. So I built a another one ... that sank into the swamp. I built another one ... That fell over and THEN sank into the swamp .... So I built another ... and that stayed up. ... And that's what your gonna get, lad: the most powerful kingdom in this island. PRINCE But I don't want any of that, I'd rather ... FATHER Rather what? PRINCE I'd rather ... just ... sing ... MUSIC INTRO FATHER You're not going to do a song while I'm here! Music stops. Listen, lad, in twenty minutes you're going to be married to a girl whose father owns the biggest tracts of open land in Britain. PRINCE I don't want land. FATHER Listen, Alice ... PRINCE Herbert. FATHER Herbert ... We built this castle on a bloody swamp, we need all the land we can get. PRINCE But I don't like her. FATHER Don't like her? What's wrong with her? She's beautiful ... she's rich ... she's got huge tracts of land ... PRINCE I know ... but ... I want the girl that I marry to have ... a certain ... special ... something ... MUSIC INTO FOR song. FATHER Cut that out! Music cuts off abruptly. You're marrying Princess Lucky, so you'd better get used to the idea! Guards! TWO GUARDS enter and stand to attention on either side of the door One of them has hiccoughs and does so throughout. FATHER Make sure the Prince doesn't leave this room until I come and get him. FIRST GUARD Not ... to leave the room ... even if you come and get him. FATHER No. Until I come and get him. SECOND GUARD Hic. FIRST GUARD Until you come and get him, we're not to enter the room. FATHER No ... You stay in the room and make sure he doesn't leave. FIRST GUARD ... and you'll come and get him. SECOND GUARD Hic. FATHER That's Right. FIRST GUARD We don't need to do anything, apart from just stop him entering the room. FATHER Leaving the room. FIRST GUARD Leaving the room ... yes. FATHER Got it? SECOND GUARD Hic. FARTHER makes to leave. FIRST GUARD Er ... if ... we ... er ... FATHER Yes? FIRST GUARD If we ... er ... (trying to remember what he was going to say) FATHER Look, it's simple. Just stay here and make sure he doesn't leave the room. SECOND GUARD Hic. FATHER Right? FIRST GUARD Oh, I remember ... can he ... er ... can he leave the room with us? FATHER (carefully) No .... keep him in here ... and make sure he doesn't ... FIRST GUARD Oh, yes! we'll keep him in here, obviously. But if he had to leave and we were with him. FATHER No ... just keep him in here. FIRST GUARD Until you, or anyone else ... FATHER No, not anyone else - just me. FIRST GUARD Just you ... SECOND GUARD Hic. FIRST GUARD Get back. FATHER Right. FIRST GUARD Okay. Fine. We'll remain here until you get back. FATHER And make sure he doesn't leave. FIRST GUARD What? FATHER Make sure he doesn't leave. FIRST GUARD The Prince ... ? FATHER Yes ... make sure ... FIRST GUARD Oh yes, of course! I thought you meant him! (he points to the other GUARD and laughs to himself) You know it seemed a bit daft me havin' to guard him when he's a guard ... FATHER Is that clear? SECOND GUARD Hic. FIRST GUARD Oh, yes. That's quite clear. No problems. FATHER pulls open the door and makes to leave the room. The GUARDS follow. FATHER (to the GUARDS) Where are you going? FIRST GUARD We're coming with you. FATHER No, I want you to stay here and make sure he doesn't leave the room until I get back. FIRST GUARD Oh, I see, Right. They take up positions on either side of the door. PRINCE But, Father. FATHER Shut your noise, you, and get that suit on! He points to a wedding suit on a table or chair. FATHER throws one last look at the BOY and turns, goes out and slams the door. The PRINCE slumps onto window seat, looking forlornly out of the window. MUSIC INTRO to song ... The door flies open, the music cuts off and FATHER pokes his head in. FATHER And no singing! SECOND GUARD Hic. FATHER (as he goes out.) Go and have a drink of water. FATHER slams the door again. The GUARDS take up their positions. The SON gazes out of the window again ... sighs ... thinks ... a thought strikes him ... he gets up, crosses to his desk and scribbles a quick note and impales it on an arrow ... takes a bow down from the wall ... and fires the arrow out of the window. He looks wetly defiant at the GUARDS, who smile pleasantly. 15 EXTERIOR - A FOREST - DAY CUT TO the middle of the forest. SIR LAUNCELOT is riding along with a trusty servant, CONCORDE. LAUNCELOT And ... o v e r ... we go! He strides over a big tree trunk ... his "horse" does run and jump ... LAUNCELOT (enthusiastically) Well taken, Concorde! CONCORDE Thank you, sir, most kind ... LAUNCELOT And another! CONCORDE misses a beat. Steady! Good ... and the last one ... CONCORDE does the run-up with the coconuts. He does the break for the leap ... there is a thwack. SIR LAUNCELOT is waiting for the horse to land. CONCORDE Message for you, sir. He falls forward revealing the arrow with the note. LAUNCELOT Concorde - speak to me. He realises he might be in danger and so starts to crawl off ... when he notices the note. He takes it out and reads it. LAUNCELOT (reading) "To whoever finds this note - I have been imprisoned by my father who wishes me to marry against my will. Please please please please come and rescue me. I am in the tall tower of Swamp Castle." SIR LAUNCELOT's eyes light up with holy inspiration. LAUNCELOT At last! A call! A cry of distress ... (he draws his sword, and turns to CONCORDE) Concorde! Brave, Concorde ... you shall not have died in vain! CONCORDE I'm not quite dead, sir ... LAUNCELOT (a little deflated) Oh, well ... er brave Concorde! You shall not have been fatally wounded in vain! CONCORDE I think I could pull through, sir. LAUNCELOT Good Concorde ... stay here and rest awhile. He makes to leap off dramatically. CONCORDE I think I'll be all right to come with you, sir. LAUNCELOT I will send help, brave friend, as soon as I have accomplished this most daring, desperate adventure in this genre. CONCORDE Really, I feel fine, sir. LAUNCELOT Farewell, Concorde! CONCORDE It just seems silly ... me lying here. SIR LAUNCELOT plunges off into the forest. 20 EXTERIOR - CASTLE GATEWAY - DAY Two hanging banners one each side of the gate with the monogram: "H & L". TWO SENTRIES with spears ... slightly weddingly ... red ribbons on their right spears. We can hear from inside revelry and celebration music. We hear LAUNCELOT's footsteps. The TWO SENTRIES are watching him. One of them raises his hand. | | FIRST SENTRY | Halt, friend ... | LAUNCELOT leaps into SHOT with a mighty cry and runs the GUARD through and hacks him to the floor. Blood. Swashbuckling music (perhaps). LAUNCELOT races through into the castle screaming. SECOND SENTRY Hey! He looks down at his mutilated comrade.