The Kid Who Would be King is just one of those films that doesn’t get made anymore. Childhood fantasy that is strange and dark and a little too kinky for young audiences to be entirely comfortable with. Like those 80s Jim Henson movies, and the worlds of fleshy, wet puppetry they inspired. Rebecca Ferguson’s Morgana begins the film bound underground by the roots of Britain’s trees that she writhes against in order to break free from a country that is weakening. By the end she has transformed into draconic form, her beaklike face disconcertingly leathery, like the puppets these things used to be.
I don’t know exactly how it is where you are, but in the UK cinema isn’t generally a participatory sport. Outside of comedy or horror there’s very few acceptable reactions one is allowed to have. I’ve been to screenings with the director present where the audience were too British to have the courtesy to applaud. Sure, not all films are hits, but you’d think polite uncomfortable appreciation would be something that we’d mastered as a culture.