Beowulf Image
Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 4 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 30 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Beowulf (Kieran Bew) returns to his hometown after 20 years to pay respects to the Thane of Herot, Hrothgar (William Hurt) and his wife Rheda (Joanne Whalley), only to have the town attacked by a creature and find himself accused of murder in this ITV-produced drama based on the Old EnglishBeowulf (Kieran Bew) returns to his hometown after 20 years to pay respects to the Thane of Herot, Hrothgar (William Hurt) and his wife Rheda (Joanne Whalley), only to have the town attacked by a creature and find himself accused of murder in this ITV-produced drama based on the Old English epic poem. Expand
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure, Fantasy

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Reviewed by: Dan Caffrey
    Jan 22, 2016
    75
    Even the most cerebral series in the genre (which Beowulf certainly is not) should still appeal somewhat to viewers’ collective dragon brain, especially if it’s the kind of show that might have an actual dragon in its future. And after seeing those trolls bound across the sand less than 30 seconds in, Beowulf definitely seems like that kind of show.
  2. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Jan 19, 2016
    75
    The 13-episode series may be imitative, but it’s well plotted, acted and directed. Bew is solid in the title role as is Speleers who, despite his odd Ed Grimley haircut, is every bit the petty, envious and devious villain you’d want Beowulf to face.
  3. Reviewed by: Maureen Ryan
    Jan 25, 2016
    60
    For fans of fantasy, this might be worth a try; there’s just enough of interest to make one wonder if Beowulf’s future alliances and aspirations will place it within striking distance of “Vikings,” on par with the enjoyable “Shannara Chronicles” and maybe ahead of BBC America’s very similar drama, “The Last Kingdom.”
  4. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Jan 25, 2016
    50
    The fact remains that sword 'n' sheepskin is now a genre, and even if you are taking it back to its roots, you have to bring something new. Creators James Dormer, Tim Haines, and Katie Newman do not. Instead, they seem content to simply join the heroic hordes, relying on ever-improving CG and familiar modern tropes--the witty best friend, a couple of feisty women, court roiling with intrigue--to extend the narrative and cinematic limits of the original text.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 6
  2. Negative: 2 out of 6
  1. Jan 27, 2016
    10
    Great, entertaining show. Should not even be compared to game of thrones. This is a fun series with great action sequences and monsters. AlsoGreat, entertaining show. Should not even be compared to game of thrones. This is a fun series with great action sequences and monsters. Also awesome sound design and acting is very good. Much better than the Shannara Chronicles. Expand
  2. Feb 23, 2016
    8
    I have to agree with AA that this show should not be compared with GOT(although to to say it's not riding on that franchise's coattails wouldI have to agree with AA that this show should not be compared with GOT(although to to say it's not riding on that franchise's coattails would be folly), as it exists wholly within its own world with its own rules, which, as JP pointed out are not always completely authentic in the fantasy world, if such a qualification exists. While the Shannara Chronicles are a guilty pleasure for me though, this show is in a whole other category as it has me literally chomping at the bit for the next episode. I just finished watching episode 5, and even though the presence of sand worms made me think that the series was becoming a wee bit too eclectic(Dune, etc.), I was still happy with the way things ultimately worked out. I'd like to say I'm in it for the long haul but I think my whole point would be that there is none since this is a mini-series anyway. P.S. I can't help laughing when I think how much I dreaded studying this poem in school and now find it so pithy and entertaining(yes, i know this has very little to do with original story!) Expand
  3. Mar 25, 2016
    6
    Some of the acting is laughable, but Kieran Bew does a solid performance as Beowulf. The same can be said of many of the plot lines andSome of the acting is laughable, but Kieran Bew does a solid performance as Beowulf. The same can be said of many of the plot lines and action scenes, but there is enough solid here to draw you back in for another episode. Sure, Last Kingdom has much better writing and acting but Beowulf is unique enough and has potential to hold its own. Expand
  4. Jan 24, 2016
    6
    This series should be called Game of Clones, not Beowulf. As a version of the Anglo-Saxon poem, it fails in too many ways to list, though I’mThis series should be called Game of Clones, not Beowulf. As a version of the Anglo-Saxon poem, it fails in too many ways to list, though I’m sure some reviewers will try. The question is whether it succeeds as a mash-up of GoT, Vikings, LOTR, and other medieval-inflected fantasy franchises, which, from the opening strains of the Djawadi-derived title music, it obviously wants to be.

    I don’t think there’s a clear answer. For me, watching the series is a little like drinking NA beer or eating “spaghetti” that’s really spiral-cut zucchini. It’s not really what I want, but I can psych myself into thinking it’s all right. So instead of Ned Stark, here’s Beowulf, another long-haired, scruffy, slightly-past-it warrior with a Northern accent, and he’s okay, if you don’t think too hard about the original. Instead of widow-turned-earl Lagertha, here’s widow-turned-earl Rheda, who’s no badass shield maiden, to be sure, but can still defend herself with violence. Okay, with the threat of violence. Pretty decent, right?

    My verdict? Well, I watched three episodes, even though it took me two tries to get through the first one. (I had to work on forgetting the poem Beowulf before I could resume watching.) And I wasn’t hate-watching the episodes. What kept me going were the monsters, not because they were all that great visually, but because they started to reveal some interesting relationships (past and present) with human beings. I also rather liked the the over-the-top costumes and sets. And I’m quite spellbound by Gísli Örn Garðarsson. So I’m game, I guess.
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  5. Feb 7, 2016
    0
    Horrific, lots of holes, acting is ok, but the writing is poor. Filled with supposed monsters that cant fight and can be brought down byHorrific, lots of holes, acting is ok, but the writing is poor. Filled with supposed monsters that cant fight and can be brought down by humans with couple of blows to the head!!! I thought monsters are strong! The fight scenes are soooo weak. Such a let down. Beowulf fights 5 men in one scene , instead of all of them trying to get hom, they come in one by one to fight and got knocked out with one punch!!!!! Horrific Expand
  6. Mar 20, 2016
    0
    Beowulf was just dire.
    I happened to be at the London Comic Con audience last year and the title drew my interest so I went to listen to the
    Beowulf was just dire.
    I happened to be at the London Comic Con audience last year and the title drew my interest so I went to listen to the panel and heard Katie Newman the ITV Producer explain how she dreamed up this vague concept related to Beowulf and then handed it to James Dormer to write- and I thought to myself this has a very little chance of being any good. You would think that ITV would have taken an established literary series like HBO did with Game of Thrones. The BBC learned its lesson with the awful Atlantis and used Bernard Cornwell's established series to create The Last Kingdom- which is not quite in the GOT league but is much much better than this mess.
    The best thing on screen is the CGI and that's not saying much.
    Thought I would give it another chance but the second episode was even worse than the first, monsters without provenance, wooden acting, a non existent plot and characters that appear to have emerged straight from 'The A Team'. A bigger waste of £17 million would be hard to fathom.
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