Review: Robin Hood

“The more the merrier.”

Cinematic failure is often borne out of ineptitude, creative bankruptcy or simple repetition, but ego must not be overlooked as a prime suspect, especially in the case of a project that feels bloated and unnecessary in the moments when it should always seem slick and inviting: the trailer.  You know you face considerable issues when filmmakers decide to take a character that has been treated about 40 different ways for over 70 years, but do it again, calling it “the untold story.”  There have been Robin Hood films ranging from drama to action to erotica (1969’s The Ribald Tales of Robin Hood).  These films varied in quality and success, by turns sweetly amusing (Robin and Marian) and lowbrow (Robin Hood: Men in Tights), with heroes whose casting was classic (Errol Flynn) and wrongheaded (Kevin Costner).  Even Disney got their share with an animated fox.  One look at the trailer for Robin Hood brings to mind a dozen other bloated, period-battle epics, two of which (Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven) were helmed by the film’s director, Ridley Scott.  The bottom line:  Robin Hood‘s source material and genre-style framework both deserve a rest.

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