Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided us with a free copy of the Blu-ray reviewed here. The opinions I share are my own.
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The Movie: 7/10
Legends, swords, magic, mud, it’s always a good starting formula for a fun story, and when you get giant elephants added in, well, that’s just entertainment gold…or is it? I’m not from the UK, so I’ve not been told the story of King Arthur my whole life. That’s a good thing when I go into any of the movies about this guy. I still am not sure about the original tale, but that’s fine, this way I don’t judge the addition of giant elephants:)
For this telling of the story we have the brother killing the king, as always, and the son of the king being hidden away until it’s time to save the whole kingdom from the horrible brother who has made himself the king. Does this sound familiar? Yea, Scar and little Simba of the Lion King told this story too. I almost said it was like the Disney animated Robin Hood from the 70’s too, but that was based on another brother of another king trying to usurp the thrown….British fantasy history is confusing! I’m glad our country is only a couple hundred years old, no time to invent legends or myths about magic and kings and usurping and other stuff like that.
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword is a fun jaunt, yes, fun jaunt. I knew it wouldn’t be a masterpiece, I mean, come on, we all saw the trailers. It is meant to be a big action adventure with Jude Law and Charlie Hunnam being tough and sometimes weird but mostly doing action and adventure, it’s not rocket science. I went along for the ride, but had to blur my eyes for the part where he is dragged around by a giant bird and fighting giant rodents, that not only looked semi-crappy, but it was boring and slowed the whole movie down considerably.
The Ursula character is amazingly gross and creepy, and if anyone ever makes the Little Mermaid into a live action, dark and gory film, get whoever designed her to do it all! If it seems like I’m not focused on the actual movie, it’s because it comes back to me in a kind of blur of memories. I have giant elephants, of course, Ursula and her slimy mermaid-esque companions, awkward giant rodents, some magic, a guy with a fiery cape fighting King Arthur, and a few other bits and pieces. It doesn’t all sit in my brain as a solid story. I think that might be why it didn’t get the backing for 5 more movies to tell more of King Arthur’s story. It’s fun and full of eye candy, but it’s got no substance or big WOW moments to hold it together.
I had a good time watching King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, however, it will fade quickly in my mind giving way to other tales with kings and magic like Disney’s animated Robin Hood from 1972, now THAT was a memorable telling of some legendary tale from the British Empire days. For the spectacle of it all, and for Charlie Hunnam’s lively performance, I would say have a few beers, get some snacks and watch this movie….and then watch Robin Hood:) It will be a great night.
- Arthur With Swagger (10 Minutes) – A look at the Guy Ritchie influence in the film.
- Sword From The Stone (19 Minutes) – A making of which has lots of on set interviews with cast and crew.
- Parry & Bleed (6 Minutes) – A look at the fight choreography needed to pull off the fight scenes.
- Building On The Past (14 Minutes) – A look at the legend of King Arthur and what was changed to make a more modern version.
- Inside The Cut: The Action Of King Arthur (6 Minutes) – A short look at the films many action scenes.
- Camelot In 93 Days (10 Minutes) – A video diary of the whole shoot.
- Legend Of Excalibur (6 Minutes) – A look at the famous sword used throughout the movie.
- Scenic Scotland (5 Minutes) – Scotland is a beautiful place here we get to see why.
- 4kUHD, Blu-ray & UV Digital Copy
Cover Art and Menus: 6/10
I don’t usually like covers like this, the two big players facing each other down, it’s a bit tired. This time, however, it seems just right for the movie. I wouldn’t have it as a poster, just because I am terribly in love with the movie.
Audio & Video: 7/10
Both the 4K Release and the standard Blu-ray are included in this pack and the 4K has the edge on the Blu-ray due to its use of HDR which manages to brighten up a lot of the gloomy scenes. The film was shot digitally using the Arri Alexa camera which means the image is sharp, black levels are good and flesh tones are perfectly matched. If I have any complaints it’s how gloomy the movie looks, I know this is medieval times but I think they had the sun back then, not everything needs to be covered in dirt and fog.
The Dolby Atmos track here is a stunner with sound coming from every angle you can think of. The dialog is clear and centered and very easy to understand even with the thick British/Scottish accents. Sound does seem to be slightly out of sync at the start of the movie, I don’t know if it’s bad ADR or an actual issue but it does clear up about 7 minutes in.
King Arthur is a mixed bag, like it or loathe it the 4K/Blu-ray presentation is up to par.
Overall Score 7/10