Academy Award-winning director Kevin MacDonald re-teams with The Last King of Scotland screenwriter Jeremy Brock for this historical epic set in second century Britain and following young centurion Marcus Aquila on his quest to solve the mystery of the missing Ninth Legion. The year is 135 A.D. It's been 15 years since the Ninth Legion went missing in the mountains of Scotland, and it's up to Marcus Aquila (Channing Tatum) to find out what happened. His own father was the commander of the Ninth, and by discovering what fate befell the fearless leader, Aquila could restore his failing reputation. Crossing Hadrian's Wall and navigating the treacherous highlands of Caledonia won't be easy though, especially since Aquila's only traveling companion is his British slave, Esca (Jamie Bell). Along the way, Aquila will attempt to make peace with his father's memory as he and Esca confront the savage tribes of the land and attempt to recover the lost legion's golden emblem -- the treasured Eagle of the North. Donald Sutherland and Mark Strong fill out the rest of the starring cast. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi
Release Date: Feb 11, 2011
Rated PG-13 Battle sequences and some disturbing images
Runtime: 1 hr. 54 min.
Director: Kevin Macdonald
Cast: Channing Tatum, Jamie Bell, Donald Sutherland, Tahar Rahim, Denis O'Hare
The Eagle is on one of those films that suffers from being released in the wake of a much better, if little seen, film about the same subject matter handled in a much better fashion with better actor. Neil Marshall’s Centurion was fantastic bloody period piece and compared to that The Eagle is a pale soulless facsimile. Kevin Macdonald clumsily directs this unfocused endeavor which meanders and never really allows you to invest in the characters or the storyline. Worse yet, Macdonald can’t direct action very well with all the action shot in extreme close up, making it incredibly difficult to figure out what’s going on during the infrequent action scenes. The story carries all the emotional weight of a pillowcase. Channing Tatum has zero screen presence and even disappears during big chunks of the film. Jamie Bell does most of the heavy lifting and he does the best he can with a hackney script that occasionally borders on homoerotic. It’s not a total failure but just not worth your time when there is a much better iteration of the subject matter. Do yourself a favor skip this one and rent Centurion especially since it’s not neutered with a PG-13 rating.