Monday, October 22, 2018

A New Film About King Robert the Bruce

Florence Pugh as Elizabeth de Burgh and Chris Pine as Robert Bruce in Outlaw King
Chris Pine as The Outlaw King
Josie O'Brien as Marjorie Bruce
A film I have been waiting for all my life. It had better be good. Judging from the trailer, it looks historically accurate. From Entertainment Weekly:
As 14th-century Gaelic nobleman Robert the Bruce, the sunny Los Angeles native manages to look surprisingly right in chain mail, hiding his California jawline beneath a tangled beard and adopting a convincing-enough Scottish burr. He’ll need at least some of that wooly gravitas to inspire his countrymen to rise up against King Edward I (a great, casually imperious Stephen Dillane) and take back their land and pride from the English.

Bruce finds his loyal tribe, including Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s fiercely endearing Lord of Douglas and a lovely, independent-minded bride (Lady Macbeth‘s Florence Pugh). He also has a mortal enemy in Edward (Billy Howle of Dunkirk and On Chesil Beach), a mad-eyed prince with a bowl cut to match his psychopathic tendencies. (William Wallace also appears briefly as secondary character, though he’s made of something much darker and more feral than Mel Gibson’s imagining).
Mackenzie falls a little too in love with his battle scenes; by the fourth clash of blood and swords it all starts to feel like déjà vu, with different horses. At nearly two and a half hours, there’s clearly room to trim (though one chaotic escape scene near the end may be the best river nightmare since Revenant). But he also films it beautifully in the natural light of candles, torches, and overcast skies, and there’s a solidness to the old-fashioned conventions of his storytelling. Unlike Bruce’s scrappy band of rebels, Outlaw never really has the element of surprise: It just comes in blazing, like a king. (Read more.)
Trailer, HERE. Scottish reaction on film, HERE. Another review, HERE. Share

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