The Kid Who Would Be King is a noble and true take on a classic for the modern world. I don’t think there’s ever been a truly definitive movie about King Arthur. I’ve always known the basics of the story, but The Kid Who Would Be King really made me appreciate Arthurian legend. Although the idea of kids becoming knights of the round table is admittedly silly, the movie is surprisingly epic. Director Joe Cornish does for fantasy what I assume he did for sci-fi with Attack the Block.
I’m so glad I decided to go see The Kid Who Would Be King by myself. Moreso when I realize it was the second to last 20th Century Fox film before the Disney merger. Which is ironic considering how Disneyfied the movie feels. Louis Ashbourne Serkis, son of Andy Serkis is a strong child lead as Alexander Elliot. He mirrors Arthur’s journey in modern day England. Alex pulls Excalibur from a stone pillar, meets a young Merlin in disguise, unites friends & bullies to his roundtable, and sets out to vanquish the evil enchantress Morgana.
Bedders, Lance, and Kaye are a likeable bunch of schoolmates who similarly mirror Bedivere, Lancelot, and Kay respectively. They learn all about the important Chivalric Code to remain honest and virtuous in their quest. Rebecca Ferguson is a menacing Morgana and Sir Patrick Stewart was born to play Merlin. Although Merlin’s younger actor steals the show with his magical snaps and British humor. The young knights learn to fight in time for an eclipse that requires the entire school’s help. The Kid Who Would Be King is honestly a fun, heartfelt, action filled King Arthur for kids.