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This live-action romp from director Claude Zidi was the most expensive French movie ever made - at 274 million francs, then approximately 50 million US dollars - and it might have put most of its budget up on the screen, but it has none of the wit or charm of the earlier animated adaptations, let alone that of Albert Uderzo and René Goscinny's original comic books. With Christian Clavier and Gérard Depardieu well cast as the indomitable Gauls and Roberto Benigni milking every gag as a scheming centurion, the acting is suitably pantomimic. But the tired plot of kidnapping the village druid and the inability of Terry Jones (who penned the English language script and dubbed Depardieu) to duplicate Goscinny's sublime linguistic games undermine the cast's efforts.