Director Kevin Macdonald got his start in documentaries, successfully parlaying the magnificent Touching the Void into a feature-directing stint with The Last King of Scotland. His State of Play was besieged with re-casting problems, so it’s not fair to critique him too harshly for that. But his latest, the embarrassing sword ’n’ sandals flick The Eagle, shows that Macdonald needs to stick to nonfiction for a while. Channing Tatum plays a G.I. Joe soldier of another era, a centurion who ventures to Scotland to reclaim not only his family’s honor, but also a golden eagle that serves as a symbol of Roman superiority. While admittedly polished, The Eagle isn’t inspiring or entertaining. There’s almost a payoff at the end, but only in that way that you feel better once you’re out of a traffic jam.
Director: Kevin Macdonald
Producer: Duncan Kenworthy, Tessa Ross, Miles Ketley and Charles Moore
Cast: Channing Tatum, Jamie Bell, Donald Sutherland, Mark Strong, Tahar Rahim, Denis O'Hare, Paul Ritter, Julian Jones, Douglas Henshall, James Hayes, Dakin Matthews, Pip Carter, Zsolt László and Aladár Laklóth