Mixed or average reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 14
  2. Negative: 4 out of 14
  1. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jul 8, 2011
    As a critic who complains about painless and brainless action movies, I hoist a glass of mead to the men and maidens of Ironclad.
  2. Reviewed by: Wade Major
    Jul 5, 2011
    Casting is almost uniformly first rate with Cox, Purefoy and the always brilliant Giamatti providing noteworthy standouts.
  3. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Jul 8, 2011
    A long way from his TV portrayal of John Adams, Giamatti seems to be having an especially good time as a splenetic King John, who would not be out of place in a Monty Python movie.
  4. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    Jul 5, 2011
    Like all sieges, this offers moments of choppy terror and excitement followed by dull sit-it-out-and-starve spots. Straddled between uproarious schoolboy tosh and serious historical movie, this still offers enough dismemberments, royal tantrums and portcullis-rammings to make for a lively Saturday night out.
  5. Reviewed by: Sam Adams
    Jul 7, 2011
    The movie's gathering of third-rank action heroes provides sufficient brawn but precious little onscreen charisma, although Brian Cox's reliable bluster lights up his handful of scenes as a bellicose baron.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Hartlaub
    Jul 7, 2011
    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?
  7. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Jul 7, 2011
    Ironclad alternately feels, plays and sounds like an abridged television mini-series and a feature-length video game.
  8. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Jul 5, 2011
    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.
  9. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    Jul 8, 2011
    Though the hambone acting quotient is high (and not necessarily unenjoyable), the loud, closely photographed limb-hacking becomes as monotonous as the movie's unrelentingly gray palette.
  10. Reviewed by: Leslie Felperin
    Jul 5, 2011
    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.
  11. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Jul 7, 2011
    As history it's bunk; as inappropriate historical fiction, it's awfully close to comedy.
  12. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Jul 5, 2011
    By making John such an unrepentant freedom-opposing monster, Ironclad denies itself any moral thorniness.
  13. Reviewed by: Ray Bennett
    Jul 5, 2011
    A gore fest aimed at indiscriminate action fans. Those interested in learning more about goings on in medieval history will probably find the splatter tedious and off-putting.
  14. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Jul 5, 2011
    This bloody, messy action film devolves into a plain ol' bloody mess.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 37 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 14
  2. Negative: 1 out of 14
  1. Jan 1, 2013
    This is one of my favourite movies of all time, despite what others say. It has many of the aspect of Braveheart, although it focuses muchThis is one of my favourite movies of all time, despite what others say. It has many of the aspect of Braveheart, although it focuses much less on freedom and the rights of the people (though that's the main storyline) and much more on the actual combat. The combat scenes here are great; there's so much decapitation and blood and cleaving people in half. This, for me, balances out any subpar-ness of the plot. It's like when you're playing something like Skyrim--when you've jumped on top of a dragon and are pounding its skull with an enchanted mace, do you really care why you're doing it? Full Review »
  2. Dec 31, 2011
    Ironclad gives you just what you want from a down-and-dirty action-oriented historical thriller. The story keeps you engaged throughout, andIronclad gives you just what you want from a down-and-dirty action-oriented historical thriller. The story keeps you engaged throughout, and the film as a whole is tense and exciting. The film doesn't pull any punches when depicting the often savage nature of medieval warfare - the battle scenes are grittily realised and shockingly brutal - you're right in the middle of the action and can almost smell the blood and sweat as it sprays across the screen. You also get a standout performance from Paul Giamatti, playing a psychotic King John - he steals every scene he's in, and makes for a captivating antagonist. The heroes of this story are a little less compelling - James Purefoy's Templar Thomas Marshall is wooden and underdeveloped, and the rest of the cast is filled out with old reliables from British TV (Jason Flemyng, Mackenzie Crook) and thesps (Brian Cox, Derek Jacobi). Charles Dance is also in the film, and is great as always, but has far too little screen-time to make any real impact. Ironclad's script leaves a lot to be desired, but is far from woeful - it does its job, that is to say, providing the cement that sticks together the numerous set pieces. Ironclad makes for an engaging thriller set in a fascinating period of English history. So long as all you're looking for is a piece of diverting entertainment, the film has a lot to offer. And perhaps most pleasingly, Ironclad isn't the least bit pretentious, unlike another Medieval epic centering on a certain inhabitant of Sherwood forest released the year before... Full Review »
  3. Oct 19, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Great action movie, based in a real events, maybe is not with top actors of the media, but great actors, great action, we learn some history at least this movie makes sense, lately I have been disappointed with movies like the last Hunger Games, waist of money to watch, just makes no sense in the end. This movie have sense at least, well done. Full Review »