Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 114 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: In an incredible twist of fate, a Scottish doctor (McAvoy) on a Ugandan medical mission becomes irreversibly entangled with one of the world's most barbaric figures: Idi Amin (Whitaker). Impressed by Dr. Garrigan's brazen attitude in a moment of crisis, the newly self-appointed Ugandan President Amin hand picks him as his personal physician and closest confidante. Though Garrigan is at first flattered and fascinated by his new position, he soon awakens to Amin's savagery - and his own complicity in it. Horror and betrayal ensue as Garrigan tries to right his wrongs and escape Uganda alive. (Fox Searchlight Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 36
  2. Negative: 0 out of 36
  1. Unlike Sean Penn's demagogue in "All the King's Men," you're able to forget that Whitaker is acting. He embodies the role. When clips of the real Amin are shown at the end, it's almost shocking to realize the extent to which Whitaker has become him.
  2. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    90
    Forest Whitaker, uncorking the power that he usually holds in check, gives a chilling, bravura performance as Ugandan tyrant Idi Amin, whose bloody regime slaughtered more than 300,000 people. This intelligent, sometimes gruesome thriller is based on a novel by Giles Foden.
  3. The movie is an extraordinary personal adventure that views everything through the eyes of its hero as it carries him from one apocalyptic situation to another.
  4. 75
    Director Kevin Macdonald has fashioned a film that is at times nearly as harrowing as his previous endeavor, "Touching the Void."
  5. The story is fanciful, with grotesquely improbable twists involving the fictional Garrigan (James McAvoy) and one of the dictator's three wives (Kerry Washington). But as Amin, Forest Whitaker's command of the screen is so thorough, so frightening, so ripe with malice that you won't move in your seat for fear of catching his eye.
  6. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    70
    An adequate thriller redeemed by Forest Whitaker's sensational turn as Idi Amin.
  7. This veteran actor is always great, and it's just a little bit sad that he has to play a big, scary demon for us to sit up and finally take notice.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 58
  2. Negative: 2 out of 58
  1. Jun 14, 2013
    10
    The last king of Scotland is scorcher of a film that follows the story of the horrid dictatorship that took over Uganda in the 70s. The movie is seen completely through the eyes of young Nicolas Garrigan James Mcavoy), a young Scottish doctor who decides he is tired of Scotland and ready to venture into another country to make a difference.

    Soon after he begins his work in the town he begins a friendship with Idi Amin (Forest Whitaker), a powerful African leader who offers Garrigan a job as his personal doctor. Their developing relationship is wonderful to behold on screen, and for me was the main strength and the key point that made this movie go above and beyond.
    Expand
  2. Nov 28, 2012
    9
    "The Last King Of Scotland" is the mostly true story of Nicholas Garrigan (McAvoy), a young Scottish physician who travels to Uganda and eventually becomes the personal doctor to the dictator, Idi Amin (Whitaker). Directed by Kevin MacDonald, this movie certainly struck a few dissonant chords with me. I'm not saying the film was bad, in fact I found it "The Last King Of Scotland" to be a very remarkable motion picture. However, it is a deeply disturbing piece that aims to show the audience just how deranged Idi Amin was as Uganda's President. Which brings me to the film's most noteworthy aspect - Forest Whitaker's amazing, Academy-Award Winning turn as Idi Amin himself. Forest Whitaker's performance in "The Last King Of Scotland" is incredibly dynamic because at times I found myself laughing, gasping, and cringing in anger at some of the things that Whitaker did on screen. Some of the stuff that Whitaker's Amin does in this movie is truly frightening and really made me realize just how much of a megalomaniacal sociopath Amin was in real life. In fact there is one moment in this movie (one that I won't fully disclose due to it's grisliness) where I found myself just gaping at my television set - yeah stuff gets pretty grotesque. Obviously, Whitaker rightfully earned the Oscar For Best Actor in 2007. As for James McAvoy, he did a great job in his role as the doctor who just can't seem to escape the madness of Idi Amin, and throughout the movie you really learn to feel for his character. The script, of course, was brilliantly written, as it was adapted from the reportedly excellent Giles Foden novel of the same name. In terms of cinematography, I thought that the film's use of close-up shots on Amin really helped to accentuate his sheer madness and insanity. As for the rest of the camera work everything looks clean and efficient. All in all, I found "The Last King Of Scotland" to be a very remarkable, and disconcerting film that effectively used it's brilliant performances and impressive script to highlight the sheer terror that Idi Amin inflicted upon Uganda and it's people. Expand
  3. Jun 2, 2013
    8
    Whitaker completely deserved his Oscar for Best Actor; both he and James McAvoy give fantastic performances to carry this film to a climax that is exciting and thrilling. Many good films came in 06, and this film is one of them. Expand
  4. Nov 6, 2011
    8
    Le Dernier Roi d'Ecosse est un film dont on ne sort pas indemne, de part sa noirceur et sa violence. Non pas qu'il soit violent comme tant d'autres films traitant sur les gouvernements et les génocides africains, mais le film reste percutant par son propos. Soit une histoire d'amitié entre le président ougandais de l'époque Idi Amin Dada et son médecin personnel, Nicholas Garrigan. Mais cette amitié va se détériorer quand ce dernier va découvrir la véritable nature du dirigeant. Un film magistralement interprété (impeccable Forest Whitaker), qui évite les scènes de violence (exécutions, massacres...) en les annonçant par les médias ou bien par des extraits très courts. De ce fait, nous découvrons les atrocités en même temps que Nicholas, ces atrocités qui lui étaient cachées comme pour le reste du monde. Un peu surpenant pour son petit côté pop et bon enfant par moment, Le Dernier Roi d'Ecosse est un film puissant! Collapse
  5. Aug 12, 2013
    8
    In the early 1970’s Scottish doctor Nicholas Garrigan headed to Uganda to help bring medical aid to poverty-stricken locals. He soon he finds himself hired as Idi Amin’s personal physician but quickly discovers the dictators’ charms hide his murderous regime.

    The first half of movie provides a meaty examination of Amin’s savagely violent regime. His false charm quickly gives way to his true nature and Forrest Whitaker gives an excellent portrayal of the dictator coming across as the eccentric and truly terrifying man that he was. Once Garrigan becomes aware of what is really going on in the country the movie becomes more of a thriller than character study as he attempts to escape with his life. Some of the scenes towards the movies end are perhaps a little Hollywood and not completely fitting with the movies original tone. They are however still undeniably exciting and with James McAvoy giving an assured performance throughout The Last King of Scotland is certainly an interesting and entertaining movie.
    Expand
  6. Aug 24, 2013
    8
    The movie presents enough of what is realistic to make this story seem interesting. Forest Whitaker is absorbed into the role, perhaps more intimidating than the real Idi Amin. He manages to make people overlook his teddy bear face to see the terror of Idi Amin and what he caused. Expand
  7. Jun 28, 2013
    8
    Wow, this movie remembers you how people like Amin comes in different countries, but in the same way. The plot is about a guy, that actually didn't exist, it's because (I think) the director wanted to show the events from a different point of view, a "white" man working for the president. This film is really good, there are no regrets. Expand

See all 58 User Reviews