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Your Highness

A movie directed by David Gordon Green

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Get Your "HIGH" and Mighty Quest On!

  • Apr 10, 2011
Reviewer is biased.
Loves: Natalie Portman
Likes: Robin Hood Men In Tights
                    Likes: Zooey Deschanel
                    Enjoys: Spoofs and Parodies
                    Loves: Medieval Fantasies
                    Likes: Monsters and wenches
                    Not too fond of: Danny McBride
                    Hates: Bad movies
                    Reviewer also has a twisted sense of humor.

Spoofs and parodies. I’ve always had a bad taste in my mouth after cheap spoofs and parodies such as “Vampires Suck”, “We Are Spartans” and “Epic Movie” seemed to have plagued movie theaters. Seems like I wasn’t going to see the likes of “Hotshots”, “Robin Hood: Men in Tights” and “Airplane” anymore. Well, seeing as “Your Highness” is directed by David Gordon Green, after his successful “Pineapple Express”, I hoped for a better film than all the garbage wanna-be spoofs through the recent years. Going into this film, one needs to remember what he is going in for.

                Natalie Portman as Isabel, Danny R. McBride as Thadeous and James Franco as Fabious in "Your Highness."

“Your Highness” is a film that seemed to have been thought up while the filmmakers were drinking. It is a guy’s film, filled with very crude humor, language that has plenty of sexual references and nudity (it is rated R), all conveniently wrapped around the staples of medieval fantasy epics. The film is expensive to produce and needed some fine-tuning after Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg had pitched the concept to Judd Apatow. McBride and co-writer Ben Best seemed to have cooked up the script while they were at a party, drunk; or maybe watching “Lord of the Rings”, “Clash of the Titans” and “The Sword and the Sorcerer” on dvd while having lots of beer and pizza. There is a pun around this film’s title after all; “Your HIGHness” (get it?)

Thaddeus (Danny McBride) is the second son to a king (Charles Dance); he spends his days smoking out the goatmen, chasing chambermaids and sometimes farm animals. The crown prince called Fabious (Fabio get it?) is the other son who goes out to fulfill acts of heroism. One day, returning from an excursion where he had slain a “cyclops”, he brings home a worthy “virgin” bride called Belladonna (Zooey Deschanel) who he has rescued from a tower in a faraway land. On the day of their wedding, an evil wizard called Leezar (Justin Theroux) wants her back to fulfill an ancient prophecy. Apparently, if Leezar manages to impregnate this virgin while two moons converge, their offspring will be a mighty dragon and he can rule the land.

                       Justin Theroux in "Your Highness."

 Natalie Portman as Princess Isabel in "Your Highness."  Zooey Deschanel as Belladonna in "Your Highness."

Now, Fabious (James Franco, 127 Hours) must go on a quest to rescue Belladonna once again with Thaddeus accompanying him so that he could prove his worth as a prince. Along for the quest is Thaddeus squire, Courtney (Rasmus Hardiker) and a woman warrior called Isabelle (an amazing Natalie Portman) whom they have met in a gladiatorial arena. Together, armed with their English accents, they must find the hidden “Unicorn” sword with the aid of a magical compass provided by a pervert wizard through the maze of a horny minotaur so they can save Belladonna and slay Leezar….(whew!)

Believe me, I am not spoiling anything with my summary, It is pretty straight-forward as that. “Your Highness” has a predictable premise and it doesn’t pretend to be something it is not. This film is a parody of sword and sorcery and it uses modern language to accommodate all the crude and dirty jokes that made “stoner” movies successful in their own way. There are plenty of weed jokes, sexual references, and dirty humor. To appreciate a film such as this one has to be able to find humor in dialogue such as “if your vagina is as good as my hand then….” or in riddles whose answers are acts of perversion, then you may like this movie. The thing is, I know that the direction uses this style as its backbone; the problem is, the medieval references were there but it never uses its jokes to further the themes of the film.

                              Danny R. McBride as Thadeous, Rasmus Hardiker as Courtney, James Franco as Fabious and Natalie Portman as Isabel in "Your Highness."

                             Deobia Oparei as Thundarian, James Franco as Prince Fabiousin and Simon Farnaby as Manious the Bold in "Your Highness."

What happens is a script that seems built on improvisation and ad-libbing. This wouldn’t be a bad thing, but it also renders the set designs and costumes almost useless save for just looking 'spiffy'. The production values were very nice and indeed, they looked very expensive. The film has its share of visual CGI effects and they were fitting to the film’s premise. Don’t get me wrong, the film is funny at certain points (I laughed out loud on some scenes), albeit there were times that it seemed to have forgotten that it was supposed to be funny. It was almost like the script began to run out of gas and jokes; near the end, it felt like it was trying too hard to be funny.

I am not too fond of McBride but Franco can be funny when he is in his element. The two struggled to get the comedic juices flowing, but hey, I could take it. The script also wastes the potential of Belladonna’s lack of social skills. Deschanel could’ve given more to her role but instead, she is wasted as an element for ‘cleavage’. What really pleased me was the presence of Natalie Portman (Black Swan); she was awesome in her role as a woman-warrior “ala-Jedi Knight” and she stole the show from Franco and McBride. She invests a lot in her role, but unfortunately even a finely-honed actress as she could not establish a chemistry with McBride.

                       Natalie Portman as Isabel and Danny R. McBride as Thadeous in "Your Highness."

                      A scene from "Your Highness."

I guess you can say that I didn’t hate “Your Highness”. I wasn’t expecting much, and while I didn’t get much, I thought it was an ‘okay’ diversion if I was sitting at home with a beer and a pizza. The issue was the script could’ve used more ‘fine-tuning’ (F-bombs can only work so far) and for a film like this, it is important to stay true to the theme; while having no qualms about taking the movie a lot further. I think they put too much thought on the “HIGH-ness” part and forgot to inject some solid medieval humor. Still, it was better than the 'wanna-be' parodies and spoofs in recent years. Give me a beer and a huge pepperoni pizza, it would enhance its viewing experience.

RENTAL [2 ½ + Out of 5 Stars]

Poster art for "Your Highness." Poster art for "Your Highness."
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May 22, 2011
Every time I saw a trailer for this, all I could think of is: "Portman is a honey and the one guy looks alright" but THEN, the fat obnoxious guy shows up. I heard this is a turd with little humor or even the drug humor that stoner comedy fans would like. Portman deserves better and I think you are biased when you see this. I'll wait for a rental, and the pizza. You are right though about one thing, this would beat the hell out of a Seltserberg movie any day of the week.
May 23, 2011
I tell yah, I love Portman so much that it made "No Strings Attached" better than I thought, despite the fact that I dislike Kutcher...yeah, I am biased LOL!
May 23, 2011
OOOOOCH, Kootcher. Has there been a more blatent case of a pretty boy with no talent who keeps getting work?
May 23, 2011
yeah, I know. His delivery of the dialogue were so lame but thankfully Portman was there to catch him. The guy knows which actresses to work with...
May 23, 2011
When you're a vapid beefcake, you can any woman you want I guess. Must be how he got Demi Moore.
May 23, 2011
probably.....LOL! You know another good movie he ruined for me was "the Butterfly Effect"...
April 19, 2011
That figures... what can you get out of a film with the Crown Prince named as Fabious?!
April 19, 2011
I know what you mean. LOL!
April 11, 2011
Great review WP, I like Franco and agree he can be really funny, also I have to say I actually do like McBride.
April 11, 2011
Yup, Franco can be real funny as in "Pineapple Express". He has that look that makes him seem like humorously unstable LOL!
April 11, 2011
This one does not interest me, but I do love Natalie Portman, so maybe lol. Great review!
April 11, 2011
She's the first thing for me that made the film bearable and somewhat fun. I love Portman! :)
April 11, 2011
I may do a double feature of this along with "Sucker Punch" and as a result I expect my IQ will drop a few points. ; )
April 11, 2011
hah. I actually thought of giving this a weak 3 star rating rather than a 2.5, but I dunno, the jokes started to wane after awhile. I laughed, but I dunno, something was missing...
May 08, 2011
oh, your IQ would drop very significantly if you see this, Sucker Punch and Fast Five back-to-back LOL!
May 08, 2011
You'd have to have a really low IQ in order to want to watch all of those back to back. LMAO!
May 08, 2011
that is true LOL!!. among those three films, "Sucker Punch" would be my fave...
More Your Highness reviews
review by . November 19, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
* out of ****     It would seem that even a fine filmmaker such as David Gordon Green has succumbed to the demands and faults of Hollywood. This is most apparent in "Your Highness", his newest film; and it's also his first bad one. His last movie was "Pineapple Express", and it meant new horizons for the director; I thought it was a funny flick. But this is just plain juvenile, in every sense of the word. It isn't even playful in its stupidity; rendering it useless, boring, and …
review by . April 13, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         According to Wikipedia, the wrap party for Your Highness was held in Belfast at the Harland & Wolff Shipyard. Harland & Wolff, as you may know, oversaw the construction of the Titanic – and wouldn’t you know it, the wrap party took place in a part of the Shipyard known as the Titanic Quarter. Did director David Gordon Green forget what happened to the Titanic? There are some omens you just can’t ignore. Like the Bubonic …
review by . April 07, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
'Your Highness' 'Two Jews On Film' Hath Different Views On This Fantasy Medievil Spoof (Video)
   'Your Highness' directed by David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express) and written by Danny McBride and Ben Best is the story of two brothers Prince Fabious (James Franco) and Prince Thadeous (Danny McBride) who embark on a dangerous mission to save Fabious' bride-to-be, Belladonna (Zooey Deschanel).        The film opens with Prince Thadeus and his sidekick, Courtney (Rasmus Hardiker) about to be hung by a village of drawfs. Thadeous …
review by . April 08, 2011
   If you go into Your Highness thinking of it as lesson in modern-day cinema, you’ll leave with these three conclusions: 1) Danny McBride is still not much of a screenwriter 2) David Gordon Green still hasn’t found is stride directing “action comedies” and 3) Justin Theroux is an incredibly underrated comedic actor. It was evident that he (Theroux) could pen a script or two based off the success of Tropic Thunder and Iron Man 2, but who would have thought he would …
review by . April 07, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Total buzzkill.
YOUR HIGHNESS   Written by Danny McBride and Ben Best   Directed by David Gordon Green   Starring Danny McBride, James Franco, Zooey Deschanel, Justin Theroux and Natalie Portman       Isabel: It is my legacy to do anything to stop those who fuck to make dragons.       I don’t know about you but if I am going to get high, it’s because I want to laugh and have a good time. Apparently, when Danny McBride wants …
Quick Tip by . December 20, 2011
I recently saw the unrated cut of “Your Highness”. It is almost pretty much the same except for some extended scenes and the addition of blood and some gore on select fight scenes. I did feel that the theatrical cut was the better paced film, but the action and the added blood made the film much more entertaining in an action standpoint. Natalie Portman really saved this film for me.      The Bluray was also filled with good features. I had a ball watching the alternate …
review by . April 11, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
I don’t smoke pot. I’ve never puffed the magic dragon, hung out with Cheech and Chong, or enjoyed the “wonders” of 420. That being said, I had no problem enjoying Your Highness, the newest stoner comedy by David Gordon Green, James Franco, and Danny McBride, alumni of one of my favorite comedies that’s also a big stoner comedy, Pineapple Express. Your Highness is obviously a pet project of Danny McBride’s and Green’s, containing elements any 13 year old …
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About this movie


Your Highness is an upcoming fantasy comedy film set to be released April 8, 2011. Filming began in the summer of 2009 in Northern Ireland, and concluded in October 2009.
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Director: David Gordon Green
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Thriller
Release Date: 8 April 2011 (USA)
MPAA Rating: R
Screen Writer: Ben Best, Danny McBride
Runtime: 102 min
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