Well, it looks like any franchise hopes Warner Bros. had for King Arthur: Legend of the Sword are dead in the water, with the Guy Ritchie-directed fantasy adventure suffering a miserable opening weekend in the States with just $14.3 million in box office receipts.
The film, which spent eight years in development, cost the studio a hefty $175 million to produce – including costly reshoots following what Deadline describes as “a train wreck” of an early cut – along with many millions more in marketing.
King Arthur has of course faced some stiff competition, with Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 retaining top spot this weekend with an estimated $61.9 million, while the Amy Schumer / Goldie Hawn comedy Snatched also came out on top with $16.5 million.
The movie has also been slammed by critics, with a 27% Rotten Tomatoes score, although it does seem to be going down well with audiences (well, the ones who turned up, anyway), with moviegoers giving it an A- according to CinemaScore. Our reviews were also fairly kind, with Rob Kojder awarding it ★★★★ and Shaun Munro ★★★.
Acclaimed filmmaker Guy Ritchie brings his dynamic style to the epic fantasy action adventure “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.” Starring Charlie Hunnam in the title role, the film is an iconoclastic take on the classic Excalibur myth, tracing Arthur’s journey from the streets to the throne.
When the child Arthur’s father is murdered, Vortigern (Jude Law), Arthur’s uncle, seizes the crown. Robbed of his birthright and with no idea who he truly is, Arthur comes up the hard way in the back alleys of the city. But once he pulls the sword from the stone, his life is turned upside down and he is forced to acknowledge his true legacy…whether he likes it or not
Starring with Hunnam (FX’s “Sons of Anarchy”) and Oscar nominee Law (“Cold Mountain,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley”) are Astrid Bergès-Frisbey (“Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides”) as Mage; Oscar nominee Djimon Hounsou (“Blood Diamond,” “In America”) as Bedivere; Aidan Gillen (HBO’s “Game of Thrones”) as Goosefat Bill; and Eric Bana (“Star Trek”) as Arthur’s father, King Uther Pendragon.