Thursday, 29 July 2010


I’d been looking forward to the release of the current Robin Hood film. I have disliked all other Ridley Scott / Russell Crowe collaborations and I had already concluded that the film was going to be terrible. But it’s Robin Hood and there are so many depictions of this “heroic outlaw” that no matter the outcome, for me it’s a must see.

Now I admit to going into the cinema blindly, not knowing what the purpose of this film was. All the way through, I was waiting for King John to say the one line that the trailer reiterated: “I declare him to be an OUTLAAAAAW”. Not for any other reason than I believed from this point the film would start to get interesting. I waited an hour… nothing. Two hours? Nope. It only comes at the end. Why? Well, there's been rumours of a sequel, this being part one: how Robin became an outlaw, which is not as interesting as would seem. If I’d had known this to be the case, I would not have attempted to bind myself to the series.

From the start, it’s arrows-a-flying! Unlike the graceful sound that they usually adopt in films, the arrows were forceful and quick sounding, and made me a little frightened. In this version, Russell Crowe plays a selfish Robin Hood, one who seems to be a reluctant leader. The whole story lies on coincidence and luck. He accidentally interrupts a hijacking, sees to an injured Knight and feels obligated to deliver the final request of the dying man. From this stems the plot. He enters the house of Maid Marian (who is not actually a maid at all) and tells her father-in-law, a very elderly blind man, the last words of his son. This man, on hearing Robin’s name and birthplace suddenly becomes shocked and although he doesn’t initially tell Robin, he knows who Robin is and decides to take him in. I am not entirely convinced with the plot and I just can't warm to Russell Crowe’s character, I feel no attachment to Robin, he comes across as continuously selfish and it's difficult to ignore the changing accents, at one point he sounds like David Dickinson.

I did however like the representation of the Sheriff. Of course it’ll never beat Alan Rickman, but he did deliver the best line in the whole film (see below). I also felt more attachment to John and more sympathy towards his situation. Even Mark Strong’s turncoat character is a more impressive and definite character.

Best Line: “Robin of Longstride, also known as Robin of the hood”. Ok, I know it’s not actually that hilarious a line, but being from South London, hearing this in general from anyone over 14 is pretty hilarious, let alone in the middle of a medieval tale.