Ironclad is as weighed-down as it sounds.
| Original Score: C-
This English sword-battle drama is a mess. But there's a violent simplicity and a lack of pretentiousness that's refreshing.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
The problem is that the movie is only swords and stage blood. The suits of armor are all empty.
| Original Score: 2/4
As a critic who complains about painless and brainless action movies, I hoist a glass of mead to the men and maidens of "Ironclad."
| Original Score: 3/4
The loud, closely photographed limb-hacking becomes as monotonous as the movie's unrelentingly gray palette.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
A gore-filled guilty pleasure...
The core fan base of this English sword battle drama will pay for the boundary-pushing blood and gore. Why bore them with things like plot and context and production values?
The action is cluttered and the story overly compressed, with a lot of yammering about who's aligned with whom and why (no wonder Mr. Giamatti's eyes keep rolling) in between the geysers of red.
| Original Score: 2/5
Through it all, Paul Giamatti spits bilious fury as a ruthless king with a mile-wide mean streak and an army of Danish mercenaries. What's not to like?
As history it's bunk; as inappropriate historical fiction, it's awfully close to comedy.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
This bloody, messy action film devolves into a plain ol' bloody mess.
| Original Score: 1/5
An utterly joyless exercise in blood and dirt.
While Ironclad captures the casual cruelty and flesh-and-bone violence of the 13th century, it fails to do the same in the more intimate material set in the downtime between assaults.
Medieval history lesson with lots of shattered bodies and splattered limbs.
Ironclad might be the perfect actioner for gorehound fanboys gaga for medieval trappings, but all others may find this British-American-German co-production a bit of a drag.
One has to admire the spirit of this independent production, which aims for the sweeping spectacle of 'El Cid', but it falls way short of its epic ambitions.