The Duellists

Watch The Duellists

"Fencing is a science. Loving is a passion. Duelling is an obsession."
  • PG
  • 1977
  • 1 hr 40 min
  • 7.4  (25,608)
  • 70

The Duellists is a historical drama film set in the 19th century that follows the story of two French soldiers, Lieutenant Gabriel Feraud (Harvey Keitel) and Lieutenant Armand d'Hubert (Keith Carradine), who develop a long-standing rivalry that leads to a series of duels over the course of many years. The movie is based on a short story called "The Duel" by Joseph Conrad, and it is director Ridley Scott's first feature film. The film is well-regarded for its stunning cinematography, as well as its depiction of military life in Napoleonic-era France.

The story begins in 1800 with the two young officers meeting for the first time, during the Napoleonic Wars. Feraud immediately takes offense to d'Hubert, believing that he has insulted him by merely looking at him. Feraud challenges d'Hubert to a duel, which he accepts, but their encounter is interrupted before they can fight.

Despite attempts by their superiors to make peace between them, the two men can't seem to settle their differences. They fight another duel, which d'Hubert wins. However, Feraud refuses to accept the outcome and continues to harass d'Hubert, even after he is sent to a new regiment.

Over the years, their feud becomes more intense, leading to multiple duels, each one more violent and dangerous than the last. As they escalate, their superiors begin to lose patience, and d'Hubert is ordered to either kill Feraud or retire from the military.

The Duellists is a slow-burning tale of obsession, honor, and the destructive power of pride. The film is visually stunning, with beautiful, meticulously-detailed costumes and landscapes that transport the viewer to 19th century France. The duels themselves are impeccably choreographed, and each one feels like a true-life-or-death struggle.

The two leads, Keitel and Carradine, deliver outstanding performances, with Keitel portraying Feraud as a hotheaded, passionate man who values his honor above all else. Carradine, on the other hand, plays d'Hubert as a more reserved, thoughtful character, who is willing to do whatever it takes to put an end to the conflict.

The film is also notable for its supporting cast, which includes Albert Finney as a General who tries to reason with the two men, and Tom Conti as d'Hubert's loyal friend and comrade.

Overall, The Duellists is a masterful film that showcases Ridley Scott's talent for visually stunning, character-driven storytelling. It is one of the best historical dramas of the 1970s, and a must-see for fans of the genre.

The Duellists is a 1977 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 40 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.4 and a MetaScore of 70.

The Duellists
Where to Watch The Duellists
The Duellists is available to watch free on Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, Microsoft Movies & TV, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Duellists for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 40 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.4  (25,608)
  • Metascore