Don’t compare OUTLAW KING to BRAVEHEART, compare it to IRONCLAD. This is brutal, dirty history, and there’s not a kilt in sight. Chris Pine is a softly spoken and dignified Robert the Bruce, Florence Pugh is a fiery counterpoint to their relationship and Aaron Taylor-Johnson is unrecognisable to the extent that I didn’t realise he played Bruce’s deadliest warrior until the credits. They get the key historical details right (locations, styles of warfare, ceremonies and rituals) though perhaps tone some down for the sake of watchability (for instance, there’s no way the witnesses in the king’s bedchamber would allow consummation to not take place on his wedding night). I’m not sure a lot of the film will stay with me, but it’s all very watchable and a much more worthy marker of a key passage of Scottish history. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to read about if black ops knights were really a thing… SSP
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Writer and film fanatic fond of black comedies, sci-fi, animation and films about dysfunctional families.
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