EG - OK, this was my big winner that I couldn't wait for Red to see. About 10 minutes in we were both getting bored. There are absolutely no orcs in this film! I think I may have been thinking of the wrong movie.
I'll tell you what it does have:
- A motivational speech that would make Tony Robbins feel like he has been wasting his life.
- A perfect vehicle for getting stunning actress Emma Thompson to marry a schlubby looking director.
- The best medieval battle commited to celluloid.
- And an impossibly young Christian Bale in the role of the aptly named "Boy."
Red - You can't go to school for acting and not get to know this play. "O, for a muse of fire that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention..." The prologues are amazing. The parts in between the prologues occasionally get dull, but I found the pacing generally good.
Branagh is quite good in the title role. I totally buy that the former party guy has grown into a king. He has some very human moments throughout the film, as well as times where he knows he has to be a king and steps up. He also did a helluva job directing.
The young Christian Bale is a treat. The scene between Branagh and his future missus is nice indeed. I'll second what EG says about the battles, because he watched them and I didn't.
I was terribly remiss in posting this, so it's not as clear in my mind as I'd like, but I'm going to echo EG's 3.5 Yoricks.