It seems as time goes by Netflix Originals just keep getting better and better.
First we got multiple hit series like “Stranger Things” and “F is for Family,” and more recently, Netflix released multiple hit movies like “Sierra Burgess is a Loser” and “Set It Up.”
The latest film in this trend of quality productions being put out by Netflix is “Outlaw King” starring Chris Pine.
“Outlaw King” tells the story of Robert the Bruce, played by Pine, the Scottish Lord who stood up to the British occupation of Scotland in the 14th century.
If this story sounds familiar, it’s because it is very similar to that of the Mel Gibson classic “Braveheart.”
While there are similarities in the basis of the plot, the intricacies and details of each film are very different.
The plot of “Outlaw King” takes place right after the events of “Braveheart,” making the two films pretty good companions. It’s kind of like watching “All the President’s Men” right after “The Post.”
While they tell different stories about similar events, the two movies are good companion pieces for each other and lend themselves well to double features.
The opening scene of “Outlaw King” was something that I will be talking about for a while. Before the title card even comes across the screen, the audience is treated to an almost 10-minute long unbroken tracking shot that sets the movie up for greatness.
In one sweeping shot, the audience is treated to Robert the Bruce swearing allegiance to the King of England, an excellently choreographed sword fight, and the siege of a Scottish castle by an English trebuchet and its explosive ammunition.
I love a good long take, and this one goes down in the books for me as one of the best.
Chris Pine is amazing as Robert the Bruce. His Scottish accent is fully integrated, and his performance is moving in not only his more emotional scenes, but also when he is in battle.
And while I’m talking about battles, the action scenes of “Outlaw King” are really top notch.
While they lack the grandeur of the battle scenes of “Braveheart,” “Outlaw King’s” fights take a much more intimate and personal look to each interaction that the Scots fight with the English.
While there is a good amount of shaky cam in each battle scene, it’s not so prevalent that it is distracting to the audience.
I personally didn’t find myself taken out of the moment by it, but I could see where some people may prefer the more traditional cinematography of “Braveheart.”
I really enjoyed “Outlaw King,” but I have to say that I am pretty biased.
I love “Braveheart” and I was really looking forward to “Outlaw King” coming out.
My mom, on the other hand, could not have cared less for the premise, yet was fully invested in the story as soon as the movie began. This is all the evidence I need to prove that “Outlaw King” is a genuinely good movie.
She enjoyed it so much that when she got up for a snack she asked me to pause it, something that I know for a fact she wouldn’t have done if she didn’t really love the movie.
While my mom liked the movie, I would not recommend watching this with your folks.
There is excessive violence and a couple scenes of full-frontal nudity. These elements together don’t really make for the best family movie night.
That being said, I give “Outlaw King” my full endorsement. While it may not be just as good as “Braveheart,” it certainly holds up as an excellent historical action film.