In a heroic tale of redemption and honor, Marcus Aquila (Channing Tatum), embarks on a journey to reclaim the lost emblem of Rome; the golden eagle. The story begins with Marcus, a young Roman solider, commanding his first legion in Roman-ruled Britain. The Romans are in a continued war with barbarian tribes of the Northern regions. Shortly after arriving, Marcus is injured while saving some of his captured men. He is recognized by Rome for his valor, but is devastated when he is also given a honorable discharge.
The viewer later learns that Marcus’ father was the great Roman commander of the ninth legion sent into the barbaric territories with Rome’s greatest treasure- the golden eagle. The solid-gold eagle symbolized all of the honor and greatness of Rome. But the ninth legion never returned, the eagle was lost, and Marcus’ family lost their honor. By achieving personal military success, Marcus had hoped to restore his family’s good name- but all seemed lost after his injury.
While Marcus struggles to cope with his new sedentary life, he attends a gladiator match and saves a slave from execution. The slave, Esca (Jamie Bell), becomes Marcus’ personal servant and vows his allegiance to him for saving his life. The story continues as Marcus hears word that the Eagle was spotted in the Northern territories. Although it is believed that no Roman could survive in Barbarian lands, Marcus vows to return with the Eagle. Esca, born of a barbarian tribe, accompanies Marcus.
The journey is long and arduous, heightened by the tension between the two men. Born in two different worlds, Esca and Marcus are forced to see the war from both sides for the first time. The boundary of slave an master is blurred, and an unlikely friendship is formed.
The relationship between the Marcus and Esca is the main reason to watch The Eagle. The men, so indebted to their causes, break down the barriers and learn that war is never just black and white. With action, adventure, and an eloquent plot, this film is a must.