The Three Musketeers is a take-off, variant, and/or satire of the original Dumas tale which surely did not have airships of any kind (the movie has galleons attached to zeppelins as fictionalized airships based upon real technology of the day, in the movie, the sought-after technology of war), beauties rappelling down palace walls in abbreviated costumes, or horse owners getting ticketed for the fact that their horses left their manure in the street. Though historical inaccuracies abound as well as entertain, the role of Cardinal Richelieu as an aspirant to power behind the throne, remains the same, and echoes the historical Cardinal Richelieu and the deeds attributed to him. Though Cardinal Richelieu as portrayed as an able statesman, and a cunning spymaster with a private army of sorts, the “cardinal’s guard”, with whom the underemployed musketeers pick fights to have something to do; the Cardinal’s plotting, scheming, and conspiratorial activities only nominally serve his King and/or his Church. Cardinal Richelieu ostensibly seeks money and/or power; how the plot he masterminds to engineer war in Europe beginning with hostilities between England and France serves to do anything besides create disorder and kill people, is not specified. Of course, the “good guys” (the musketeers) foil the plot. However, in this instance, things are resolved in such a way as to make the Cardinal look as if he were instrumental in delivering the hot new (fictional) weapons technology to the French King, and uncovering a scapegoat in a somewhat different plot scenario. The Cardinal is humbled, goes along with the rationalization offered by one of the musketeers, bows and scrapes before the king, and all ends happily, because, after all, France is, at this time in history, a Catholic country.

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