Film Review: Robin Hood!
Welcome to Robin Hood, Version 2010.
Only, he’s not “R Hood” in Ridley Scott’s version – he’s now Robin Longstride, left an outlaw after fighting in King Richard’s crusading army.
Band of mercenaries in tow (you know the gang: burly Little John, uppity little Will Scarlet), he vows to return a sword, pretends to be Maid Marion’s long-gone husband to protect her hamlet and takes on the swindling new King John, not to mention French goon Godfrey (played excellently by everyone’s new favourite bad guy Mark Strong).
Russell Crowe grunts his way around Sherwood Forest impressively for a man of his age, but this tale isn’t as interesting as any original. Still, as the movie ends telling us “The Legend Begins”, the sequel should be amazing.
Stick It On The Poster: 'Gladiator is uprooted to Sherwood Forest for arrow-flying action'
How do the legends compare?
Ridley Scott’s re-jig really rips up the history books. Here’s how the two versions match up…
WHO: Robin Hood
NOW: Robin Longstaff (Russell Crowe)
Early scripts had our legendary Robin doubling up as the Sheriff Of Nottingham.
Here though, Robin “The Hood” Longstride (who in the legend is named Robin Loxley) takes on the name as a tax-dodge. And to make it into the lady’s chamber.
WHO: Maid Marion
NOW: Marion Loxley (Cate Blanchett)
Cate Blanchett is the no-nonsense Northerner who is set to lose her home to the Sheriff Of Nottingham.
Originally, Marion was an Earl’s daughter, but there’s no blue blood to be seen here, even when she rides into battle alongside Robin.
WHO: Richard The Lionheart
NOW: King Richard (Danny Huston)
Introduced at the end of a long crusade, King Richard has become one cowardly lion.
Unlike previous incarnations, where King John was the idiot swindling son and Richard was the decent one spreading Christianity to the world’s heathens.
WHO: Sheriff Of Nottingham
NOW: Sheriff Of Nottingham (Matthew Macfadyen)
Similar character, but here over-shadowed in badness by the evil French infiltrator Godfrey (Mark Strong).
Looks like the Sheriff should be Robin’s main adversary when they get round to a sequel, though…