IMDb ; Metacritic

You all know the legend of Robin Hood, he stole from the rich and gave to the poor, living in Sherwood Forest with his band of merry men, his main nemesis being the evil Sheriff of Nottingham. And there have been many version of Robin over the years. My personal favourite still remains the tv show from the 80s Robin of Sherwood. It managed to get the balance between myth and reality just about right, in my opinion, of course. But even Kevin Costner’s version was damn fine fun. This is not.

Robin Hood - Ridley Scott

Robin Hood - Ridley Scott

And don’t be looking for anything that identifies Russell Crowe as Robin, because apart from the name and the fact that he uses a bow on occasion you won’t get it. Sure the names are all familiar but that’s about it. Now I have no problem with re-interpreting myths and legends. Sometimes to make them more gritty, sometimes to emphasize the magical. Sometimes just to fool around and because it can be great fun. This just seemed so pointless.

And honestly I could go on and on about what I didn’t like. I won’t totally bore you. I’m just going to run through a few of the things I disliked the most.

First off, about half an hour or so in I was bored. Bored, of Robin Hood! How Scott & Helgeland managed to achieve that I’m not sure. But I was. Not so bored I fell asleep or anything, but nevertheless, this was not a good sign. And then there was the way some of the actors seemed to be trying to imitate other actors/characters. I think it was King Richard who on occasion sounded like Richard Harris. And Prince John tried to pull a Commodus on occasion. Crowe was his usual Crowe-ness. I can’t really complain about his acting because it didn’t seem like he had any material to work with. He was adequate when he should have been great. You need your Robin to excel, especially when you are making so many changes to the story and characters, you need to give the audience a reason to like our changed heroes. I had none.

And then there was the fact that everything seemed so pedestrian, as though no effort was put into anything. The action scenes looked lazy for the most part. One or two did work well, but none was great.

Then there was the ending… Don’t worry, I wouldn’t spoil it on you, I’m just going to say that it made no sense whatsoever. Not unless this was a really badly done origin story and Scott is going to try and inflict a franchise on us. I shudder to think about that!

For the most part I found Marion to be one of the more engaging characters, but given the other lack of characters, that wasn’t really that hard, so I found it all the more annoying when she turned out to be such a dunce in the final action scene Show Spoiler ▼

And when Robin made his loving declaration to her[1] I was left feeling “what! where did that come from.” I mean, I could’ve seen them growing together, but that sudden statement came out of nowhere.

I’m going to stop now, before I launch into the what was the story with the forest children, and why what was their purpose. Maybe I should mention some positives… Oh yeah, I thought the horse charge on the beach was really well done, and the horses looked like they really were in battle. So that was cool. Very pretty horses were used. And the ponies were cute. And erm… I’ll shut-up now.

Other reviews: Hoglad’s dungeon ; Screen rant ; Smells like screen spirit ; The flickcast ; Pajamas media

Linknotes:

  1. that is not a spoiler, you all knew it would happen

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6 Responses

  1. Skye says:

    The first trailer I saw for this, I was like "oooh creepy this could be good" but then I saw a longer trailer, and then a longer thing in the theater… and the more I saw, the less interesting it looked. Cute ponies just aren't enough to justify a babysitter.

    • Fence says:

      Yeah the trailers did nothing to make me think this might be a good film. But it's Robin Hood, you know, I had to go. And even my low expectations weren't met :( Even with the cute ponies

  2. Carl V. says:

    Seems like we had some similar experiences. I thought the scenery was beautiful and I always like Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett, but I didn't feel like there were given anything worthy of their talent in this one. I liked the idea of the historical aspect, but it just never flowed well at all, and nothing about the film was "fun", which is what I go to see Robin Hood for. So much wasted potential here.

  3. Finest Robin Hood film ever, much better than Prince of thieves. Fantastic original story and fine action. Russel Crowe is first-rate. Fantastic film

  1. 15 May 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bosca. Bosca said: Robin Hood: Robin Hood – Ridley ScottDir: Ridley Scott – Writ: Brian Helgeland based on legend. Russell Crowe … http://bit.ly/9XQoiF […]