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All Hail The King! Phenomenal Performances

While modern films available to stream tend to disappoint, there are morsels here and there which not only entertain, but inspire and reignite that passion and feeling which memorable cinematic marvels are known for. The King is easily a movie that will immerse, impress, and entertain as paying moviegoers or modern streaming audiences should expect.

The King - opening scene

As a historical account of a key period in British and European history pulling mostly from Shakespearian literature, The King is one of the finest commitments historians and period film lovers can offer their pure attention to. As one could expect,

There are simply too many phenomenal performances in The King to mention in a simple article such as this, but notably Timothée Chalamet (Dune: Part I and II, Wonka, Lady Bird) delivers quite a visually stunning and memorable performance as Hal, or Henry V future King of England. It doesn’t stop there, in fact, Joel Edgerton (The Green Knight, Obi-Wan Kenobi, The Great Gatsby) practically steals the show as Hal’s trusted friend and inspiration Falstaff. Furthermore, Edgerton shows us his truly expansive talent as a writer of the film along with director David Michôd (Animal Kingdom, The Rover, War Machine).

While the film is a historical and tactical retelling of this timeframe of political turmoil, it is graceful, provocative, and touching as it develops into a story about the tough decisions, manipulation, and difficult responsibility a King inherits. The battle and siege scenes are not only captured beautifully but also encapsulate the harsh brutality of medieval warfare.

The most fascinating aspect of the film is the cinematography and natural lighting brought forth skillfully by cinematographer Adam Arkapaw (Macbeth, True Detective, Animal Kingdom). With darker days and evenings indoors, the lighting is what immerses us into the dark ages before electricity. Note how many of the indoor scenes are shot near a window or breach, as to offer a natural and primitive form of illumination for the subjects. Some candlelit scenes are reminiscent of the gorgeous look one would find in films like Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon.

The phenomenal practical lighting in The King

Director David Michôd brings together an ensemble of pure talent across the board. It’s no surprise that the movie received fairly high acclaim from audiences and critics. The King received an array of nominations while bringing home a few peripheral awards, including Best Screenplay from the FCCA (Film Critics Circle of Australia).

The historical detail highlighted throughout The King from chivalric encounters to strategic and tactical military exploits really makes this a movie that deserved more than simply a top ten spot on Netflix. With a roster of eleven name worthy producers including Michôd, Edgerton and Brad Pitt with Plan B Entertainment, missing out on The King is to miss out on one of the finest historical dramas of our time.

A scene of chivalric battle in The King

Filling in the gaps of historical Shakespearian accounts of the decisive leadership of King Henry V, the fictitious aspects are probably not far-fetched. When it comes to thriving deception in the shadows of the age where sunlight and weather dictated the days happenings, The King is one of the best delivered works of historical drama.

The King is currently available to stream exclusively on Netflix.


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