Braveheart sequel, Robert the Bruce, is way less epic and heroic (Review)

Mel Gibson’s Braveheart is a “historical” film that follows William Wallace’s journey from a Scottish commoner to a leader fighting for his country’s freedom. Robert the Bruce was featured in the film, and in history, he would become the king of Scotland and help liberate his country from England’s rule. 25 years after the release of Braveheart, we finally get a sequel with Angus Macfadyen reprising his role as Robert the Bruce, which is now available on Digital and VOD.

There are many tales to be told for Robert the Bruce. Filmmakers could focus on his victory against the English army at Loudoun Hill or any of his other victories against Edward II of England. However, the filmmakers wanted to do something smaller where Robert the Bruce spends the majority of his time with a family that saved him. What we have is a film that should have been called “Robert the Defeated: Saved by the Family.” There are no epic battles, no epic fights from Robert the Bruce, and there’s a lack of focus on its storytelling.

Set in 1306, Robert the Bruce has been losing battle after battle from the might of England. A bounty has been set for Robert the Bruce, and soldiers that fought alongside him are now hunting him. A family discovers his body and takes him in, and they will help motivate the king to live and fight another day.

Yes, the majority of the story is about how Robert the Bruce is saved by a mother, her son, nephew, and niece. In the final act, I started to get flashbacks from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi where the Ewoks are fighting the stormtroopers.

For a movie called Robert the Bruce, we really don’t see the Scotland warrior being heroic. He has one small victory against a rival, but the rest of the film has him running for his life and becoming useless. He’s mostly in the backseat and incapacitated.

The film also lacks focus as we skip from one group of characters to another group of characters. Just when you thought the movie was going to follow a particular group, it transitions to another, making you wonder why the characters even had extended time on the screen.

The one shining beacon in the film is the return of Angus Macfadyen as Robert the Bruce, and it’s a nice continuity for fans of Braveheart. The performances from the cast are solid with what they’re given.

Final Reaction

Have your expectations set low since Robert the Bruce is an entirely different film from Braveheart. The film lacks focus as it jumps from one group of characters to another group. There are no epic battles and no heroics from Robert the Bruce, and what we’re left with is a movie that would be suited if it didn’t feature or wasn’t named after the titular character.

Score: 2/5 Atoms

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