The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) Poster

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4/10
What a pity!
Leofwine_draca31 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
I came to this off the back of ATTACK THE BLOCK, a film that many of us adore. It was smart, fresh, witty, exciting and appealing and one of the best films of 2011. Joe Cornish's follow-up took years to come through, and I guess I was hoping for more of the same. I didn't get it. The writer/director's previously-displayed creativity is entirely missing, leaving this a generic 'young adult' fantasy preoccupied with tired tropes and generic staging. The whole thing has a bargain basement LORD OF THE RINGS rip-off feel to it, but made without any of the expected British charm. Instead they up the comedy stakes and as a result this becomes completely embarrassing at times, a made-up-as-they-go-along kind of feel to it. The acting is also routinely poor, with unrestained overacting from certain performers and a general lack of conviction from all involved; with the offspring of both Celia Imrie and Andy Serkis in the cast and neither displaying any kind of talent, this whiffs of nepotism too. Add in the usual pretty but soulless CGI action that's blighted many a modern movie, you have a general waste of time, although it does pick up a little at the end for a lively climax.
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6/10
Arthurian adventure
SnoopyStyle20 March 2019
The movie starts by retelling the Arthurian legend. Morgana threatens to return when the world descends back to darkness. Arthur declares that Excalibur shall also return. In the present day, Alex Elliot and his best friend Bedders are bullied by Lance and Kaye. His father is long gone and his mother is helpless. One night, he pulls Excalibur out of a rock. A new kid arrives at school. He is Merlin in disguise and reveals that Morgana shall rise in four days during an eclipse.

This has good potential to bring Arthurian adventure into the modern world. There are issues with the kids and eventually, they awkwardly work them out. First, the group is better off with only one bully. By having two bullies, the characteristic gets diffused. It would be better to have three friends and one bully. Second, the bully's great backstabbing move should not be taking Excalibur. His backstabbing move should be running away from the fight. If he takes the sword, he declares himself to be the heroic king and takes on the biggest challenge. It should be the exact opposite. He should be scared of the danger and his redemption is rejoining the team. On the other hand, I like the general concept and the group does slowly grow on me. The idea of uniting enemies for the round table is an interesting idea. It does need better execution.
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beautiful
Kirpianuscus11 December 2019
It has all the virtues to be that nice film who you expect. In essence, a sort of cocktail of Medieval legends and contemporary kids - parts of a huge adventure, the eyes of Louis Ashbourn Serkis. the fast hands movements of Angus Imrie and, sure, Patrick Steward . Good special effects- surprising in few sequences, lovely values in new light, the spirit of classic kids books and a lot of fun. In my case, few tears, to. So, just beauiful work.
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3/10
I don't huddle
nogodnomasters13 February 2019
Warning: Spoilers
The story follows that of King Arthur. Alex (Louis Ashbourne Serkis) raised by a single mom discovers he is descended from King Arthur. England and the world is divided (didn't mention Brexit) and Morgana is poised to return. Alex must mount an army of kids to defeat her.

The acting was bad and the plot dragged along. The dialogue wasn't cute and clever like it should be for a kid's film. They had demons in flames but no Nicolas Cage. Even Patrick Stewart didn't help.
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Entertaining diversion, English kids must fight evil during a solar eclipse.
TxMike25 October 2019
I watched this at home on BluRay from my public library, while my wife was in Galveston. I would not normally have sought this out but seeing a trailer for it on a different disc piqued my interest. (No dear readers, it is not "peaked". Look it up.)

I am not the target audience, being of grandfatherly age and all, but I have always been interested in the various Arthurian and Excalibur stories. And I enjoy watching movies of all kinds, and imagining what it was like for the production crew to make the movie.

I will quote one professional review, "Alex is a normal teenager with normal teenager problems. He sleeps too late, keeps to himself a bit too much, and deals with a normal assortment of disapproving teachers and bullies. But when Alex accidentally pulls the mystical sword Excalibur from a local construction site, he is visited by the wizard Merlin and warned of a great danger: Evil sorceress Morgana is returning to Earth to wipe out humanity once and for all. Now, Alex has four days to unpack the secrets of Excalibur, raise an army, and wage a war against Morgana's army of undead warriors, all without getting a wedgie from his newly appointed Knights of the Round Table."

So yes, especially for a wet and cold afternoon in Texas, this is an entertaining diversion, the scenery is spectacular, special effects are done very well and the soundtrack has suitable very low bass to rattle loose glasses in the wet bar.
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8/10
Many of my peers have been wondering if this flick . . .
oscaralbert5 February 2019
Warning: Spoilers
. . . is more of a "Round Table" feature, or a "Hobbit" show. Perhaps the correct answer is that it draws heavily from both worlds. Like Middle Earth, THE KID WHO WOULD BE KING's England has trees that sometimes walk around. The kid's quest sounds more like something that "Bilbo" or "Frodo" would do, rather than a likely pursuit of "King Arthur's." However, names such as "Pendragon," "Sir Lance," "Sir Kaye," "Morgana," and "The Lady of the Lake" are sprinkled around here liberally, not to mention "Excalibur the Sword." With Stonehenge serving as just one of many "Harry Potter"-like transportation portals, and Merlin turning himself into an owl reminiscent of Potter's "Hedwig" whenever the occasion suits him, many viewers will be waiting for the "March Hare" to come hopping along to make for Grand Slam coverage of the main British Fantasy Quartet (sorry, "Peter Pan," "Narnia," and "Pooh," but you all finish out of the running!). Older viewers may wish to wait for the R-Rated home release of THE KID WHO WOULD BE KING, because Morgana is kind of hot.
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8/10
Better than it was reasonable to expect from a children's movie
siderite7 November 2019
British folklore (Arthur and his pesky knights), family friendly with a good moral, kiddie adolescent protagonists and it feels like the good episodes of Doctor Who. Don't expect something spectacular, but consider the quality of other kids movies, the money grabbing condescending crap that assumes all children are morons. This is not like that. Top marks to Angus Imrie, who played a great kid Merlin and who I don't doubt would make for a good Doctor some day? Reminded me of Richard E. Grant.
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6/10
Cute kids movie
cherold14 May 2019
When I saw a trailer for this film about a kid who in the modern age who pulls a sword from a cement block and finds he has a destiny to save England and the world it struck me as a cute but unexceptional kids flick. Then I saw it was directed by Joe Cornish, who had done the first-rate Attack the Block I figured I'd take a look.

Ultimately, it's exactly the movie the trailer suggested. It's a kids adventure movie reminiscent of a lot of other kids adventure movies. I would have given up early on if not for a very amusing, quirky performance by Angus Imrie.

It's well done but rather predictable. It's got some fun special effects and a big battle finale that's nicely done. The cast is pretty good, with little Louis Ashbourne Serkis surprisingly commanding as the chosen one.

The movie doesn't always make sense. Imrie is a teen Merlin because Merlin ages backwards, yet sometimes he suddenly becomes the old Merlin without ever offering an explanation as to why or how that would even work. The mythology is inconsistent and sloppy and often seems more designed more to make a moral point than because it makes sense in the context of the story.

I did enjoy it more often than not. There are some very solid scenes and I did consider rating this 7 stars. If a decent fantasy aimed at young people sounds appealing to you then check it out.
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6/10
Just because we've, essentially, seen it before doesn't mean it isn't good.
Pjtaylor-96-13804428 February 2019
Let's be honest, we've all seen 'The Kid Who Would Be King (2019)' before. It's a kid-friendly, modern-day reimagining of an old legend entered around a 'chosen one' narrative and an ensemble of single-trait characters. That doesn't mean that it's without its merits, though. It may occupy a well-worn genre but it occupies it well, comfortably conforming to - and occasionally contorting - the conventions it knows so keenly. It also has a good amount of edge, self-censoring only through its central conceits, and, as such, it feels much closer to the fondly-remembered 'kid' films of yesteryear than most of the stuff being pumped out today (and not just because it's live-action). This actually makes it feel incredibly authentic as each moment seems to serve the story. Whether it's scary, funny, heartfelt or just plain action-packed, the flick always makes a point of staying true to itself, having an excellent understanding of its target audience in the process. Of course, this means that much of the piece is painted in pretty broad strokes. The humour is never really successful and the character-work is all incredibly basic. Still, it's appreciated. By the time the finale rolls around, you'll be invested in the characters and will actively want to see them succeed. Speaking of the finale, it's probably the best part; it's exciting, well-staged and uniquely large-scale. Unfortunately, it's preceded by a pace-killing 'fake-out' that's not only obvious but also just far too long. Without it, I feel the picture would have moved much more smoothly into its final movement and, generally, been all the more successful. It doesn't destroy the experience, though. Overall, the movie is a fun and well-executed entry into a widely-seen genre. It's, essentially, as predictable as it is enjoyable. It's not groundbreaking, nor extremely engaging, but it's entertaining enough to be worth a watch, especially - I suppose - if you aren't as familiar with its framework as I am. 6/10
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8/10
Delightful
ThomasDrufke6 February 2019
Coming off of Attack the Block, it was thought Joe Cornish would be the next hot commodity amongst young Hollywood Directors, however he took a long 8 years to make his next film. The Kid Who Would Be King, which is essentially a kid version of Attack the Block (with small important differences of course), is a smart and undeniably fun follow up for Cornish. Combining witty humor that appeals to all ages and great action, it's hard not to like this one. I came for Rebecca Ferguson's first true villain role, I left loving the kids AKA the young Knights of the Roundtable.

8.0/10
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6/10
The Vidiot Reviews...
capone66617 April 2019
The Kid Who Would be King

Anti-vaxxers will be happy to know that out of all the people killed by the black plague, no one had autism.

The modern knights in this fantasy however have been inoculated, so the disorder remains a threat.

Alex (Louis Ashbourne Serkis) fancies himself a hero, but the bullies at his school see him and his friend (Dean Chaumoo) as targets. That is, until Alex finds a mysterious sword in a construction site that turns out to be Excalibur. The re-emergence of the weapon also signals the regeneration of the sorceress Morgana (Rebecca Ferguson), who will stop at nothing to retrieve the blade.

A modern retelling of King Arthur lore, this kid-centric update starts off as a rollicking adventure, but dawdles through pointless training montages and bonding sessions. While the special effects are top-notch, the generic story is second-rate.

Furthermore, if Arthurian legend ruled modern England, even Merlin couldn't fix Brexit. Yellow Light

vidiotreviews.blogspot.ca
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4/10
Five to Ten Yr Olds
westsideschl7 May 2019
Tiresome plot hooks used countlessly times before as follows: 1. You start out almost immediately with a bullying scene (bullies always are bigger & meaner looking) unfortunately it continues as one of the main storylines. 2. Usual breakfast scene & of course late for school; oh as usual only mom because dad disappeared long ago. 3. Usual demonic female underground w/roots entangling her, but she looks good for being buried for so many centuries. Her helpers of course are black, skeletal thingies w/red glaring eyes. 4. Merlin shows and makes things swirl to show he's magical. Oddities: 1. The sword: Somehow it shows up sticking out of some concrete in the middle of an urban construction site, and no one noticed? 2. To make our lead character stand out there are scenes of hundreds of students going to school all dressed in black except two in black & white & one in red (guess who). Conclusion: Acting, dialogue OK for age group. Props, sets, CGI, etc. cheap. Best suited for five to ten year olds who have never seen this well worn, copied & recopied plot.
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8/10
Awesome family action flick with slick Sci-Fi
UniqueParticle21 January 2020
Fun adventure story that's inspirational and delightfully confident! I love the magic aspects, sound design is soothing, the battles are epic, and several parts are funny. Nice experience for any age unfortunate IMDb has it at 6.0 definitely deserves better! A nice treat that might surprise you.
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6/10
Entertaining but forgettable and boring.
cruise0125 April 2019
The Kid Who Would Be King (3 out of 5 stars).

The Kid Who Would Be King is a decent fantasy adventure film that modernizes the King Arthur's story as a regular 12 year old boy Alex (Louis Ashbourne Serkis) comes across an Excalibur after being chased by bullies. He picks up the sword and notices that an evil sorceress Morgana (Rebecca Ferguson) and her army of skeletons show up to cause chaos.

Kids will enjoy the film. Adults may find it to be cheesy and boring. It is cheesy with the dialogue. And characters are trying to be funny. Like the modern Merlin (Angus Imrie) who does all this click clacking with his arms and fingers to do magic. And the older version of Merlin is played by Patrick Stewart. The humor is a hit and miss for adults. I did not like it or find it amusing.

Louis Ashbourne Serkis was decent playing the main character. Rebecca Ferguson was good playing the villain but was very much underwritten. Which you really do not know much about her character besides she practices dark magic and is evil.

The visual effects are cheesy which are not top notch. But there is enough action to keep the adults entertained at least.

Overall, The Kid Who Would Be King is a fair film. The plot is mediocre. The modern children version of King Arthur's story is cheesy and forgettable. The acting is decent.
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5/10
Good Enough
pennyelenabooks28 August 2019
Although entertaining at times, the kid who would be king is too much of a kid's movie. I guess for younger audiances (part of that creepy creature though) it is a good adventure, as it has everything. However, for me, it felt like a lord of the rings rip off.
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8/10
It was so good that damn screaming toddler couldn't ruin it.
pmtelefon27 January 2019
But that kid tried his best. He didn't stop acting up the entire movie, including the trailers. It's outrageous that anyone would bring a child that age to any movie let alone a movie like this. When I said something to the mother at the end of the movie, she said nothing and gave me a stupid smile. Do you think the message of "The Kid Who Would Be King" sank into her thick head? Do you think all of the talk about selflessness got through to her ? I doubt it. Anyway, the movie is a lot of fun. The story, acting and special effects were all solid. If I was twelve years old, it would have been my favorite movie.
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6/10
Great TV Show Pilot, Okay Movie
matthewssilverhammer1 February 2019
The Arthurian legends were the YA novels of their day. Full of magic, humanism, drama, and adventure, they carry the epic traits of so many of the modern tales we get wrapped up in. Now those tales have returned, boasting the influences of so many of the stories it helped to birth (Harry Potter, Star Wars): the oafishly wise mentor, the unassuming hero, the otherworldly foes, the good-hearted sidekicks. It's a plot as old as time and as predictable as any old fable, but with strong characters and cool lore, The Kid Who Would Be King manages to be forgettable, childish fun. When young Alex finds and removes a sword from a cinder block, it becomes clear that he may be the descendant of King Arthur himself. Joined by a team of outcast schoolmates, they go on an Amblin-esque quest, including the action ingenuity and lovable loser protagonists of beloved films like Goonies. On the same note, it also includes the obnoxious tendencies of those 80s films that parents squint their eyes at (constant yelling, demonizing of adults). Luckily, director Cornish displays a care rarely seen in modern live-action kids fare, as proved by big themes like modern politics and little details like dirty fingernails. Ultimately though, this is a silly little movie, which isn't a bad thing. The hero's-journey opening and the final battle are a blast, combining the best elements of Home Alone, Hook, and even Lord of the Rings, and its calling card in those moments is its over-the-top-ness. Do I wish it was maybe either more substantive or more overtly juvenile? Sure. But my 6-year-old was fully engrossed throughout, so what do I know?
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7/10
Was not expecting much but I was very entertained.
subxerogravity29 January 2019
It's very good.

Totally reminds me of The Goonies.

It's all about a young crew of misfits coming together to go on an adventure of a lifetime. So Goonies, very 80s, yet nicely updated for 2019 (but I can still hear Cindy Lauper singing as the kids gallop on horses)

Totally for children. It's very funny, but Some of the dialog was corny as hell but it's met to be as uplifting as possible, even with some of the dark elements.

I noticed that the movie also seems to have a sugarcoated message on how messed up the world is and only kids can save the future (A very realistic message under the guise of a fantasy movie. As they say across the pound, it's quite brilliant). Very sugarcoated but so very clear that I was expecting more references about the head of America to be done.

Very promising. The type of movie that all kids should have a copy of at home.
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8/10
A fun fantasy adventure
DarkVulcan2929 January 2019
I liked the setting a fantasy tale in modern times, a lot better than that dumb King Arthur movie, This movie is not a masterpiece, but it never tries to be, just a fun adventure for the whole family. Loyal fans of Harry Potter and Star Wars probably will find this amusing.





The young actors play off each other perfectly, even the kid actors, cause they feel like real kids, very relatable, and not just actors. Effects don't disappoint either. Also fun when the characters go on a journey and really begin to click. If you are looking for a film that is a good way to spend two hours then The Kid Who Would Be King is that film for you.
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6/10
Teen Arthur
stevendbeard26 January 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I saw "The Kid Who Would Be King", starring Louis Ashbourne Serkis-Noddy,Toyland Detective, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Oh yeah, he is the son of Andy Serkis, aka Gollum; Angus Imrie-Pond Life, Kingdom_tv; Rebecca Ferguson-The Mission:Impossible movies, The Greatest Showman and Patrick Stewart-Logan, Robin Hood:Men in Tights. This is an updated telling of the King Arthur Sword in the Stone tale starring teens instead of adults. I guess you could call it 'Teen Arthur vs the medieval menace'. Louis plays the young boy that literally gets his hands on Excalibur, the legendary sword of King Arthur. Angus plays Merlin in a teen age body and Patrick is the adult version of Merlin-he is a magician so he can change shape, he also turns into an owl. Angus tells Louis that he must gather an army of other teens to do battle with the evil Morgana, played by Rebecca, to save all of England, and quite possibly the whole wide world. Louis must form his own version of the Knights of the round table and fight Rebecca's demon warriors-luckily, they are pretty easy to kill. The movie is alright to take your family to see, without worrying about tons of blood filling the screen-when the demons die they usually just crumble and disappear. It's rated "PG" for fantasy action and violence, scary images, some bullying and language and has a running time of 2 hours. I wouldn't buy it on DVD but I could see buying it for my grandkids to watch. Otherwise, it would be a good rental.
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5/10
The Kid Who Would Be King
JoBloTheMovieCritic20 July 2019
5/10 - good visuals and a hardy effort can't save this film from mediocrity
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8/10
If I was 12 this would be my favorite film of the year...
CubsandCulture19 April 2019
As a clever re-working of the King Arthur tales this film is very entertaining. The few action set pieces are exciting and the final battle is really fun. The film's sense of humor is spot on for this type of film; The guy who played the younger Merlin is absolutely hysterical in this. The film has just the right tone for a family fantasy flick.

It plays a little long and the pace lags now and then. The third act complications around Alex's father are really not needed, and make the film a bit too serious for the other material.

This is a great film for family fun night.
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8/10
Really good actually! Surprise me!
kwenchow21 April 2019
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is funny and touching! The movie start with some King Arthur animation introduction! I start to guessing this movie will bored! But instead it full of development! The action also very decent! I like the young Merlin character, he really kill it with every scene he is in! And he should cast as next Doctor Strange! IMO! The adult Merlin also have some funny scene! Different from his performance in Logan! After the main actor know his mother cheated him, the adult Merlin told him to continue his cause! Actually I'm crying in this scene! The world is about belief no matter it's reality or fantasy! The movie full of adventure feel! A must watch film!
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8/10
45 Minutes to Explain
pensman21 November 2019
With the success of Harry Potter and The Hunger Games, this film should have garnered a larger audience but it didn't but it might have a chance on HBO. As a child I loved playing with toy knights and knew the story of Arthur and I would have loved this film. That was the 1950's, long before video games thus books and the imagination were the basics of entertainment. My grandchildren are mesmerized by video games with CGI graphics that even my wild imagination would have found beyond anything I could have come up with.

Forty-five minutes into the film one of the characters says, so were supposed to go on a journey, fight dragons and monsters, find a missing father, and save Britain. Yep, that's it. A bullied Alex and his even more bullied friend Bedders have to convince their school tormentors--Lance and Kaye--to join them and get to Cornwall while being pursued by fiery mounted demon knights and aided occasionally by a new student, Mertin Ambrosius Caledonensis.

The young actors are all good and add believably to an unbelievable story. The CGI effects are good and some of the scenery is beautiful. So just sit back and watch the film without negative prejudgements and try to see it through the eyes of the child you once were who believed monsters lurked in closets and under beds. Or if you have young children or grandchildren, huddle on the couch in a darkened room, munch popcorn, and enjoy the story and its messages about trust, courage, friendship, and family.
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8/10
Fun, and surprisingly clever, but somewhat sloppy
aidanratesmovies11 May 2019
The Kid Who Would Be King starts out as an engaging, surprisingly clever kids film, that feel original even while taking hints from other family film classics of the past. However, the film's pacing, as it goes on, is rather a bore, and the film seems to get caught in its own web of storytelling, and frustratingly loses where it wants to go. Even with these issues though, the film manages to keep its heart, and the actors manage to give rather well done performances for kids of their age. The look of the film is nothing new, and it seems rather uninspired at times, but it certainly isn't bad. The film just feels as if it could use a bit of a touch up at times of which could make the scenes they are trying to capture, far more interesting than what it ended up being. The script varies from being smart and clever, to vague and choppy. In the end though, The Kid Who Would Be King manages to be a decent time, which is especially surprising considering the quality in family films today. I had rather small expectations for the film, as it hardly seemed to be of any interest to me, but it was a fun time, and i'm glad I didn't miss it. My Rating: 8.25/10
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