Whoever got the idea to cast skinchy dorky bug-eyed Yank Paul Giamatti as King John of the "Magna Carta" fame, deserves a medal. If you've ever wondered how Paul Giamatti a reliable method actor would play "Ming the Merciless" look no further than "Ironclad" the man rants, raves and chews the scenery like he has gone mad on crystal meth.
I haven't had so much fun watching a berserk historical impersonation since the Glory Days of Rod Steiger playing Napoleon in "Waterloo".
The film itself is lugubrious dreck wallowing in the infamous "First Baron's War" in Englandback in the 1200's. All the battle scenes are ruined by shakey-cam histrionics, Ty Burr got that much right in his review in Friday's Globe, but in Giamatti's performance an over the top gem can be found. "Ironclad" is up at the Danvers Mall, likely it'll be gone by next Friday see it if you can...