Down 156 this week

The Eagle (2011)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Adventure, Drama  |  11 February 2011 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.2/10 from 50,702 users   Metascore: 55/100
Reviews: 191 user | 216 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

In Roman-ruled Britain, a young Roman soldier endeavors to honor his father's memory by finding his lost legion's golden emblem.



(screenplay), (novel)
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Centurion (2010)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A splinter group of Roman soldiers fight for their lives behind enemy lines after their legion is decimated in a devastating guerrilla attack.

Director: Neil Marshall
Stars: Michael Fassbender, Dominic West, Olga Kurylenko
Ironclad (2011)
Action | Adventure | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

In 13th-century England, a small group of Knights Templar fight to defend Rochester Castle against the tyrannical King John.

Director: Jonathan English
Stars: Paul Giamatti, Jason Flemyng, Brian Cox
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

As the Roman empire crumbles, young Romulus Augustus flees the city and embarks on a perilous voyage to Britain to track down a legion of supporters.

Director: Doug Lefler
Stars: Colin Firth, Ben Kingsley, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Solomon Kane (2009)
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A ruthless mercenary renounces violence after learning his soul is bound for hell. When a young girl is kidnapped and her family slain by a sorcerer's murderous cult, he is forced to fight and seek his redemption slaying evil.

Director: Michael J. Bassett
Stars: James Purefoy, Max von Sydow, Rachel Hurd-Wood
Pathfinder (2007)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A Viking boy is left behind after his clan battles a Native American tribe. Raised within the tribe, he ultimately becomes their savior in a fight against the Norsemen.

Director: Marcus Nispel
Stars: Karl Urban, Clancy Brown, Moon Bloodgood
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Arn, the son of a high-ranking Swedish nobleman is educated in a monastery and sent to the Holy Land as a knight templar to do penance for a forbidden love.

Director: Peter Flinth
Stars: Joakim Nätterqvist, Sofia Helin, Stellan Skarsgård
Action | Adventure | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A man, having fallen in love with the wrong woman, is sent by the sultan himself on a diplomatic mission to a distant land as an ambassador. Stopping at a Viking village port to restock on supplies, he finds himself unwittingly embroiled on a quest to banish a mysterious threat in a distant Viking land.

Directors: John McTiernan, Michael Crichton
Stars: Antonio Banderas, Diane Venora, Dennis Storhøi
Fighting (2009)
Action | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

In New York City, a young counterfeiter is introduced to the world of underground street fighting by a seasoned scam artist, who becomes his manager on the bare-knuckling brawling circuit.

Director: Dito Montiel
Stars: Channing Tatum, Terrence Howard, Luis Guzmán
King Arthur (2004)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A demystified take on the tale of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Director: Antoine Fuqua
Stars: Clive Owen, Stephen Dillane, Keira Knightley
Black Death (2010)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Set during the time of the first outbreak of bubonic plague in England, a young monk is given the task of learning the truth about reports of people being brought back to life in a small village.

Director: Christopher Smith
Stars: Eddie Redmayne, Sean Bean, Carice van Houten
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

14th-century knights transport a suspected witch to a monastery, where monks deduce her powers could be the source of the Black Plague.

Director: Dominic Sena
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Ron Perlman, Claire Foy
Robin Hood (2010)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 13th century England, Robin and his band of marauders confront corruption in a local village and lead an uprising against the crown that will forever alter the balance of world power.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett, Matthew Macfadyen


Cast overview, first billed only:
István Göz ...
Cohort Centurion
Bence Gerö ...
Celt Boy / Young Marcus
Zsolt László ...
Aladár Laklóth ...
Flavius Aquila
Marcell Miklós ...
Fort Legionary 1
Bálint Magyar ...
Fort Legionary 2
Ferenc Pataki ...
Fort Legionary 3
Bálint Antal ...
Young Legionary
Lukács Bicskey ...
James Hayes ...


In 140 AD, twenty years after the unexplained disappearance of the entire Ninth Legion in the mountains of Scotland, young centurion Marcus Aquila (Tatum) arrives from Rome to solve the mystery and restore the reputation of his father, the commander of the Ninth. Accompanied only by his British slave Esca (Bell), Marcus sets out across Hadrian's Wall into the uncharted highlands of Caledonia - to confront its savage tribes, make peace with his father's memory, and retrieve the lost legion's golden emblem, the Eagle of the Ninth. Written by Focus Features

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The destiny of a soldier. The honour of a slave. The fate of an empire.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for battle sequences and some disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |



Release Date:

11 February 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'aigle de la neuvième légion  »

Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$8,684,464 (USA) (11 February 2011)


£2,770,774 (UK) (15 April 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When the troops are being woken up before the night attack on the fort, one of the soldiers complains about the helmets. As he laces the cheek plates, an injury is visible on his chin. This is derived directly from contemporary accounts of the laces on the helmets cutting into soldiers' chins being a common complaint. See more »


When the Roman patrol is dispatched out to look for the lost grain shipment, a signifier is seen leading them out. That is incorrect. The signifier was the bearer of a Roman legion or smaller subunit's standard, eagle, or symbol of the emperor. A signifier would not have been part of a routine patrol. See more »


[first lines]
Marcus Aquila: Marcus Flavius Aquila, Fourth Cohort of Gaul, Second Legion, come to relieve the command.
Lutorius: Lutorius Drusillus Salinator, acting senior officer.
Marcus Aquila: Where's the garrison commander?
Lutorius: He left this morning, sir. Couldn't wait to get away.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"This motion picture used sustainability strategies to reduce its carbon emissions and environmental impact." See more »


Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.5 (2011) See more »


The Return of the Eagle
Performed by Torc featuring Eoghan Neff, Flaithri Neff (as The Neff Brothers) and Atli Örvarsson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

If I'm wrong then I shall die: And that's how it should be.
11 April 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The Eagle is directed by Kevin Macdonald and adapted to screenplay by Jeremy Brock from the book The Eagle of the Ninth written by Rosemary Sutcliff. It stars Channing Tatum, Jamie Bell, Donald Sutherland, Tahar Rahim and Mark Strong. Music is scored by Atli Örvarsson and cinematography by Anthony Dod Mantle.

In 120 AD, The Roman Ninth Legion marched into Caledonia, they, along with their precious Golden Eagle standard, were never seen again. 20 years later and Marcus Flavius Aquila (Tatum) arrives in Britain to serve as a garrison commander. He carries a burden, though, for the Ninth Legion was led by his father. It is perhaps his destiny that he go forth into Caledonia to maybe solve the mystery and restore honour to the family name?

Better angry than dead.

A film of two different, but equally enjoyable, halves, The Eagle is a delightful throw back to the swords and shields movies of old. All things are in place for a rollicking tale of courage, friendship and honour, and the film mostly delivers on its premise. First half is all about character introduction and motives required for plotting. We get some clanking sword play and splendid synchronised army manoeuvres as a garrison defence unfolds. Great to report that CGI and digital blood are not dominating proceedings, this is very human, even if the editing is of the whippy kind. A turn of events then sees Marcus come by way of Bell's slave, incidents are defined and we then move into the second half of the picture.

Life, life, LIFE!

Here is where the film becomes a character piece as two men from different walks of life, enemies with anger and determination gnawing away at their souls, traverse the magnificent Scottish Highlands (Dod Mantle's photography is breath taking at times) to solve the mystery of The Ninth. What follows is an invigorating olde world adventure where mistrust, redemption and unknown tribes reside. Dialogue stays sharp and Macdonald never lest the pace sag. There's a pleasant adherence to period flavourings, with the Romans and their foes given an intelligent make over by the writer, while it's really refreshing to find there isn't a token female love interest jimmied into the story.

Film, perhaps inevitably given the modest budget and expectations afforded it, is far from flawless, but it's becoming increasingly difficult to understand just what the modern audience, or indeed old classics movie fans, expect of a genre film such as this? The churlish decry the casting of American Tatum in the lead, but what he lacks in actual depth of talent is more than compensated for by him knowing how to make the role of Marcus work. With impressive physicality and square jawed machismo, he cuts a splendid rugged figure, he also knows how to brood, essential for any stoic hero stung by a slur on his family name. Bell slots in nicely as the weak of body but strong of mind slave, Esca, the unrecognisable Rahim scores very well as a warrior tribesman, while the technical touches within the picture (including Örvarsson's score) are genre compliant.

Sutherland's casting is odd, and Mark Strong is badly wasted, and the ending, whilst satisfactory, is not as grandiose as it should be. The latter more galling given the one they rejected, that's available in the extras on the DVD, would have closed the film down far better. Yet this is a far better film than its box office take and internet ratings suggests it is. The days of magnificent historical epics and eye dazzling choreographed sword fights sadly look a long way off now. That doesn't mean that fans of such films have to accept any genre offering that comes their way, for example such as Neil Marshall's very uneven Centurion, but something like the smaller scale treats of The Eagle deserve our support. 7.5/10

24 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Translation when Esca and the painted seal were around the fire meld85
What works for Ben-Hur does not work for this joniq2002
How well portrayed are the Indigenous Scottish tribes rologas81
Random Testudo... worst centurion ever. ComradeJK
What language are the natives (Celts) speaking? newagedna
Can't appreciate it Jezreeel
Discuss The Eagle (2011) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: