YMMV / A Knight's Tale

  • Base-Breaking Character: Jocelyn gets a lot of hate from people who dislike William's constant showering of her with praise, as well as a role as The Obstructive Love Interest - or from people who just prefer Kate. But there are others who think her relationship with William is still very sweet, and she does get some of the best lines in the film. A lot of Jocelyn hate tends to come from Die for Our Ship.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Just before his eventual defeat Adhemar imagines Wat, Roland, Kate and William delivering an Ironic Echo of the speech he gave William. It's rather out of place and usually gets cut out of TV airings.
  • Cliché Storm: Some would argue that there isn't very much that's original in this film beyond the main gimmick. Troperiffic clearly comes into play however.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome:
    He's blonde/he's pissed/he'll see you in the lists/Lichtenstein/Lichtenstein!
    He's blonde/he's tanned/he comes from Gelderland/Lichtenstein/Lichtenstein!
    • Chaucer has a solo act later, when collecting the group's money from the Frenchmen betting against William.
    Chaucer: He's quick/he's funny/he makes me lots of money/Lichtenstein/Lichtenstein...
    • The soundtrack in general. The opening set to Queen's "We Will Rock You," concluding with the epic Brian May guitar solo (apparently, in-universe, played on a trumpet). David Bowie's "Golden Years" highlighting the romantic dance between William and Jocelyn, and "The Boys Are Back In Town" as the knights ride in to London for the World Championships.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Jocelyn's lady-in-waiting Christiana is quite popular among fans, despite being a side character who has only minimal lines. A lot of fans state that they found her to be prettier than Jocelyn, and use her in ships.
    • Kate is easily the most popular member of the supporting cast, despite being the last to join them. A lot of people wish she had been the main love interest, though just as many are happy that she is a prominent female character who doesn't end up as somebody's love interest.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: A lot of people feel that Will should have pursued Kate rather than Jocelyn.
  • Foe Romance Subtext: Quite possibly deliberate, according to the DVD Commentary.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • There is no record of what happened to Geoffrey Chaucer for a year in his life, and this film is implied to take place in said year. He says I Should Write a Book About This, and indeed 'The Knight's Tale' is the first chapter in The Canterbury Tales.
    • Geoff also tells two men that he will get revenge on them by humiliating them in fiction. These two men are Peter the Pardoner and Simon the Summoner, who both appear in The Canterbury Tales too.
    • Jocelyn's challenge for Will to lose the tournament and prove his love for her is a direct Shout-Out to the 12th century poem "Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart".
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: One of Chaucer's Red Barons for William is "the seeker of serenity". Wat is played by Alan Tudyk, star of Firefly and its film adaptation Serenity.
  • Ho Yay:
  • Informed Attractiveness: Jocelyn. The general consensus is that while she is lovely, the amount of praise over her looks is extremely over the top, particularly since she wears a lot of bizarre and unflattering outfits and hairstyles. Not helping matters is that other female characters, despite being just as, if not more, attractive, receive no attention or remarks. Granted she is a noblewoman, while they are a maid and blacksmith respectively, but some find it Character Shilling.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: There's fanfiction of Kate/Will, Kate/Wat, Kate/Chaucer, Kate/Roland, and Kate/Adhemar.
  • Magnificent Bastard:
    • A protagonist-friendly example in Edward, the Black Prince of Wales. Nearly every bad thing that has happened to Adhemar in this movie has been at least indirectly caused by Prince Edward — or more accurately, by Adhemar's own refusal to joust him. A short time after this occurs, Adhemar is called away to war — on the Black Prince's orders — where he frequently sees the results of the tournaments that have taken place in his absence, all of them being won by William and the fact of it all causing him great anger. Then, when he comes back, he manages to expose 'Ulrich von Lichtenstein' as William Thatcher; Edward's retaliation is to fully pardon and knight William, urge him to fight in the tournament and then cheer him on.
    • There's also his speech when he knights William:
    This is my word and as such it is beyond contestation
  • Narm:
    • During the final joust, there's WIIILIAAAAAAAAAAAAAAM!]] It doesn't help that the line is said by William himself.
    • Only for Dutch audiences, but Gelderland is a real province in the Netherlands. So its status as a made up homeland for William caused many unplanned laughs.
  • Narm Charm: The romantic dialogue is quite silly in places but still works since William's supposed to be struggling with expressing his feelings. Especially hilarious is when he's fumbling over words and manages to spurt out "Your breasts! They are ... below your throat."
  • Retroactive Recognition:
    • You know Jocelyn's maid? Believe it or not, but that's actually Berenice Bejo, who would go on to receive major critical praise and recognition for her role in The Artist and be nominated for an Academy Award.
    • Heath Ledger, natch. While some fans remember him for his role as William, he would only get his big break on three subsequent movies (even getting an Academy Award in one of them)... all before biting it midway in production of the last.
    • Also, Mark Addy, more widely know for King Robert Baratheon of Game of Thrones.
    • He's not the only Game of Thrones face either. The priest who obliviously takes Jocelyn's deadpan lamentations of So Beautiful, It's a Curse at face value? Mace Tyrell.
  • Tear Jerker: In-Universe example; William's friends all suffer some amount of this when he is about to be taken away for impersonating a knight.
    William: Roland, you would see me run?
    Roland: Yes.
    William: And you, Chaucer
    Chaucer: Yes, with all the pieces of my heart, William.
    William: Wat, you and me, we're not runners.
    Wat: Yes, today we are.
    William: Kate?
    Kate: Run William.
    • And when they were all helping Will compose a love letter. "I miss you like the sun misses the flower".
    • Anything involving William's father is genuinely moving, which is rather odd given the rest of the film's Camp tone.
      • Particularly the flashback to when William's father leaves him with Sir Ecter. Though it's simultaneously a CMOH that his father is trying to let William have a chance to follow his dreams, the look on his face as they say goodbye is utterly heart-wrenching. It's not helped by the fact that in the flashback, his father says he was apprenticed to Sir Ecter for seven years and the flashback was prompted by William admitting he'd not been back to England for twelve years...
    • William's reaction when he sees his father again. His expression when he realises his father truly has gone blind is enough to make anyone tear up but then the moment when William's father realises he's talking to his son will be guaranteed to have you reaching for the tissues.
  • Woolseyism: The idea was that modern audiences would perceive the tournaments the same way a medieval audience would have. It's sort of a transculturation convention.
    • Tilting (the actual name for it, jousting was the name for the whole series of competitions) isn't a very hard sport to follow in the first place; you knock someone off their horse and you win, if neither falls the winner is determined by who broke more lances (or who scored more hits) on his opponent.