It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This raucous historical romp spins the iconic legend into something that's relentlessly entertaining, even if it never quite satisfies because it's in such a hurry to set up a sequel. Thankfully, there are some deeper themes along the way that give the actors something to chew on besides the scenery.
In post-Roman Britain, King Uther (Eric Bana) has been killed by his brother Vortigern (Jude Law), who made a deal that involved some very black magic. But Vortigern is haunted by the fact that Uther's infant son Arthur somehow escaped and will someday return to pull the sword Excalibur from the stone and claim his rightful throne. Meanwhile in Londinium, Arthur (Charlie Hunnam) has no idea who he really is. Raised in a brothel and trained as a muscled fighter, he has a nice little racket going on. So discovering his identity is a shock. He's immediately spirited away by a mage (Astrid Berges-Frisbey) and some rebels (Djimon Hounsou and Aiden Gillen) who help him plot how to take back his crown.
The entire film is essentially a chase as Vortigern and his chief goon (Peter Ferdinando) pursue Arthur and his growing band of rebels. That all of this is leading to an epic confrontation is no surprise. But Ritchie oddly frames each action sequence as a splintered montage, which means we're only ever watching a series of key images with no momentum or context. Some of these work cleverly, but they begin to wear us out: we know what's happening but we're not able to experience it ourselves. Thankfully the dialogue has a witty present-day snap that brings the characters and the camaraderie between them to vivid life.
Continue reading: King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword Review
Arthur grew up as a peasant on the streets of Londonium having escaped the terror that was unleashed upon his father Uther Pendragon's kingdom when he was just a boy. But despite growing up away from his royal roots, there was always something special about him; a determination and a willingness to stand up and fight no matter how big the enemy or how slim the chances of survival. This does not go unnoticed by the current King Vortigern, who took over the throne all those years ago. Arthur is captured and imprisoned by Vortigern's men and it's then he learns of his true destiny. And that destiny is sealed when he manages to pull the sword of Excalibur from the legendary stone with the world watching. Vortigern will stop at nothing to keep his ill-gotten crown, but still he underestimates the power that the sword wields. Using his newfound power, he joins with the kingdom's resistance to regain what's rightfully his and avenge his father along the way.
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Arthur might have an extraordinary destiny, but after his birthright was taken from him at a young age, he has grown up an agent of the streets of Londonium and now the idea that he has royal blood is almost laughable. That is until he manages to unsheath the mighty sword of Excalibur from a stone; a feat that can only be achieved be he who is worthy of the throne. This forces him to make a choice, he can ignore the destiny that is pressing in around him or he can seize it once and for all. He joins the kingdom's resistance and it's there he meets the beautiful Guinevere who encourages him to learn of the power that he wields and defeat the tyrannous Vortigern, avenging his parents and ending his rule for good.
Continue: King Arthur Legend of the Sword Trailer
Freddie Fox seen attending the 2016 London Evening Standard Theatre Awards held at the Old Vic Theatre - London, United Kingdom - Sunday 13th November 2016
For the most part, Arthur has taught himself all the life lessons he knows, he lives a rough life with his friends in the town, fighting comes as standard for the young man, however Arthur's life is about to change for better and worse. When Arthur is challenged to pull the famous sword from the stone he achieves something that all men before him have failed to do, he retrieves the sword.
Arthur's life story becomes a little clearer, Arthur is the son of Uther Pendragon a noble king loved by his people but when he dies his crown and seat on the throne are stolen by Vortigern who will go to any lengths to secure his future as leader of the kingdom. Since the death of Pendragon, the whole country has slowly fallen into chaos - particularly the capital, Londinium. Vortigern rules with an iron fist and his willingness to use dark magic cause more and more problems.
As Arthur learns about his past, he unites with a group of rebels but the new owner of Excalibur is far from enthusiastic at fighting Vortigern's army. As time passes Arthur realises that he must be the one to restore some peace to the city but with Vortigern leading his troops it's not going to be an easy battle.
Continue: King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Trailer
Igor Strausman is the less thought about assistant of the insane but brilliant Victor Frankenstein. He's as genius as the passionate medical student he aids in experiments, but more rational when it comes to ethics. He does, however, share Frankenstein's obsession with eternal life and becomes equally as excited when they manage to bring a dead animal back to life. This in itself marks a unique scientific advancement, but Frankenstein's morbid curiosity fails to stop there. He wants to be able to create human life, but doing this involves sourcing body parts from mortuaries - and any other place they can find. Igor's timid nature, though deeply involved passion for the project, keeps him from doing his best to dissuade Frankenstein from completing their 'monster', until it's too late. Now they have a rogue beast on their hands, not to mention the police who are out for blood.
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Freddie Fox - LCM s/s 2016: One For The Boys Charity Ball held at the Roundhouse - Arrivals. - London, United Kingdom - Friday 12th June 2015
Solid acting and adept filmmaking help make up for the fact that this film asks us to spend a couple of hours in the presence of a group of truly despicable characters. They're played by some of the brightest (and most beautiful) rising stars in the movies at the moment, but each one of these young men is vile to the core. So the fact that these are supposed to be Britain's brightest and best hope for the future makes the film pretty terrifying.
It's set at Oxford University, where the elite Riot Club (including Douglas Booth, Sam Reid, Freddie Fox, Matthew Beard, Ben Schnetzer and Olly Alexander) are on the lookout for wealthy white students to complete their 10-man membership. They find suitable candidates in new arrivals: the sneering Alistair (Sam Claflin) and conflicted Miles (Max Irons), whose one drawback is that he's seeing a common girl (Holliday Grainger). After the rigorous initiation process, Alistair and Miles are welcomed to the hedonistic gang at a lavish dinner in the private room of a country pub. But things turn nasty as they drunkenly hurl abuse at the pub manager (Gordon Brown), his daughter (Jessica Brown Findlay) and a high-class hooker (Natalie Dormer) they hire for the night.
Based on the play Posh by screenwriter Laura Wade, the film is centred around this increasingly chaotic dinner party. Although nothing that happens is particularly surprising, because these young men are such relentlessly bigoted, misogynist snobs that it's impossible to believe they belong anywhere other than prison. They certainly don't deserve their self-appointed status as the top students at Oxford, who are getting debauchery out of their systems before taking the lead in British politics and business. But then, that's precisely Wade's point, and she makes it loudly. Thankfully, director Lone Scherfig balances things by offering glimpses into these young men's dark souls while skilfully capturing the old-world subculture and a strong sense of irony.
Continue reading: The Riot Club Review
During the UK miners strike between 1984 and 1985, working families are in desperate need of support. They're feeling victimised and abandoned by society as threats over their livelihood remain imminent. But they're not the only ones feeling ostracised in their own country and that's how the Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners campaign was born. Homophobia is rife in the UK, with the National Union of Mineworkers even refusing help from the LGSM campaigners for fear of how people may see them. Instead, they take their support to a small town in Wales where the majority of workers there are miners. In an extraordinary show of acceptance in an unlikely era, the town allows their new supporters to raise funds for their village. The townspeople may be humorously ignorant about life as a homosexual, but they're judging no longer.
Continue: Pride Trailer
It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...
Arthur grew up as a peasant on the streets of Londonium having escaped the terror...
Arthur might have an extraordinary destiny, but after his birthright was taken from him at...
For the most part, Arthur has taught himself all the life lessons he knows, he...