Sunday, 6 June 2010

40, Robin Hood


Without a "Bryan Adams" in sight I was glad that another crack had been taken at telling the story of Robin Hood. Why? Well because if you think about it, potentially it all the adventure of "Pirates" mixed with the scale of "Gladiator" and if, like me you love your epics this is one not to be missed.

When Disney's Robin Hood came out with a Fox, Bear and Lion taking the lead roles it was simple, as with the Kevin Costner version, Robin of Locksley robbed from the rich and gave to the poor, governed by the evil King John awaiting the return of Good King Richard the Lion Heart from the crusades, John (aided by the Evil Sheriff of Nottingham) raided the simple village folk of all their taxes allowing Robin to run around with his band of Merry men looting the rich folk and giving it back to the poor?............sounds correct? of course it is, everyone knows the story of Robin Hood.

However, not this time. Robin Hood is NOT Robin of Locksley, he is Robin Longstride - a totally different family, who assumes the identity of Robin of Locksley when the real one dies and our hero decides to return his sword to the dead Robins father. On arrival at the Locksley farm / village he meets Marion (Robins wife) and after a lengthy chat with her father in-law assumes the role of Robin of Locksley and takes up his place as the rightful heir and husband???? - There is loads more to this plot line but that about covers the basics.

Okay - so a bit distant from the story we all know but to add a few more twists, King Richard dies early on leaving the actual throne to John - who on the surface is actually quite nice!!! The Sheriff of Nottingham is a bit of a sap, albeit beautifully played by Tom from Spooks but its the Merry Men and Friar Tuck who in my eyes steal the show (and the first time I have seen the actor Kevin Durand play a good guy role - look him up)they are absolutely hilarious!!

This film can easily be portrayed as a prequel to the Robin Hood we all know - it is only after facing the french army head on, led by their King and an English traitor (Mark Strong) bent on instigating civil war so the English borders are weakened do Robin and King John stand side by side, wreaking devastation of the advancing French troops - and for that part its a great partnership. But when the "adoration" of the troops is bestowed upon Robin and not King John does he get declared an outlaw... blah blah blah and then it ends. So a sequel maybe?? well there is no talk of one yet so who know...........maybe in the future.

As you know, I don't normally go on about the plots in this much detail but if you watch this film thinking you know what its all about you will be mistaken - a new plot, a new story and a new twist - personally I loved it.

There has been criticism about the accents, acting etc but don't let it bother you....its hardly noticeable and gets washed away with the great story and fight scenes very quickly.

A host of British & American talent star, including 1 Aussie and in general - this is a great film.

See this if...................Gladiator floats your boat