I was really in two minds if I wanted to make the effort to see Napoleon in the theatre. Directed by Ridley Scott and starring Joaquin Phoenix (Joker, Beau is Afraid), those are two people that I sometimes love and sometimes…. Do not. However, Napoleon has been getting some major mixed reviews with some saying it is a masterpiece and others saying that they hated it.

How to Download Napoleon

Napoleon was released on November 22, 2023. You can download it from Apple TV. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and check the current availability.

Napoleon: The Movie Review

Historical Accuracy and Drama

I found it interesting how most of the French reviews for the movie have been mostly negative. There has been a lot of talk about the movie not exactly being all that historically accurate. That was not something that bothered me to be honest, Ridley Scott has proven that he can make these big epic “history” style movies and I was interested enough to decide to go and see this before it left my theatre.

The movie is about the rise and fall of Napoleon Bonaparte. We see him become the ruler of France and then lose it all. One of the things that I was not aware of before I saw the movie was that much of the drama and the movie in general was dedicated to his relationship with his first wife, Josephine.

Exploring Napoleon’s Personal Life

This was way more interesting than I thought it would be! It was kind of fun how these two had a modern-day celebrity-like relationship that had the papers talking and the people gossiping. I think that Vanessa Kirby was great as Josephine and she had a great chemistry with Joaquin Phoenix.

Joaquin Phoenix’s Portrayal of Napoleon

I will be honest, off the top of my head the only other movie incarnation of Napoleon that I think I have seen is the one in Bill & Ted and I much preferred that! As you would expect, Phoenix gives it his all here and I liked how they showed that he was a brilliant tactician on the battlefield and how he loved his country, but he was willing to do whatever it took and sacrifice countless people to ensure France was number one.

The Battle Scenes and Visual Effects

The battle scenes in the movie are fantastic! These were so well done that I did not know what was real and what was CGI most of the time. There is a scene that has a battle taking place on a frozen lake that was one of the best scenes I have seen in a movie this year and by far my favorite and most memorable scene from this movie.

Final Thoughts on Napoleon

There is a lot of good stuff in Napoleon, but there is a lot of stuff here that is filler and if I am being brutally honest, it does have some great highlights, but most of the movie is forgettable. It can be rather dull and there are these longwinded scenes that feel like they are Oscar bait that just go on and on and honestly, I just did not care.

The movie comes in at over 2 and a half hours and if they had cut around 30 minutes and kept it more focused and quicker-paced, it would have been a much better and more exciting movie. I am not sure I will be in a rush to see this one again, but in a couple of years, if I find this on Blu-Ray or even 4K for cheap, I would consider giving it another chance.

Napoleon is a visually striking biopic with mixed reviews, focusing on Napoleon's rise and fall and his relationship with Josephine. Download it.
6 Total Score
Napoleon Review Summary

Sound & Music
  • The movie can be visually stunning
  • It has some amazing battles
  • The battle on the frozen lake was amazing
  • I liked the tabloid drama stuff with Napoleon and Josephine
  • The movie is rather slow paced and boring
  • I have heard that is far from being historically accurate
User Rating: 4.5 (2 votes)
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Jason Delacey

Jason Delacey

Jason is a 40-year-old writer from Northern England. He has been playing video games his whole life and writing about them for over a decade. As well as enjoying gaming into the wee hours of the morning, Jason is a real film fanatic too! He is open to watching all genres of movies from animated singing animals to brutal horror!

Jason loves to give his honest opinion on games, movies, TV shows and is always willing to give anything a try!

Favorite Games: Resident Evil 4, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time, Bioshock Infinite, Super Mario World, The Last of Us, Halo 2, Streets of Rage 2, Overwatch.

Favorite Movies: Terminator 2, The Empire Strikes Back, Avengers Infinity War, Bloodsport, The Transformers The Movie. Dogma, BASEketball, From Dusk Till Dawn

Favorite TV Shows: X-Files, Supernatural, Lost, American Horror Story, The Mandalorian, Stranger Things.