Yachtsman Steve Drexel bets his friends that he can swim ashore on a remote south-seas island with nothing but a toothbrush and be 'living the life of Riley' when they return. With handmade... See full summary »
A. Edward Sutherland
Amid big-budget medieval pageantry, King Richard goes on the Crusades leaving his brother Prince John as regent, who promptly emerges as a cruel, grasping, treacherous tyrant. Apprised of England's peril by message from his lady-love Marian, the dashing Earl of Huntingdon endangers his life and honor by returning to oppose John, but finds himself and his friends outlawed, and Marian apparently dead. Enter Robin Hood, acrobatic champion of the oppressed, laboring to set things right through swash buckling feats and cliffhanging perils! Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
What other actor could leap around Sherwood Forest like Doug does? It is almost skipping! Certainly Errol Flynn was too butch for such things - and Kevin Costner couldn't do a jig if his ass was on fire. But beautiful balletic Fairbanks proves here that he was the ultimate swashbuckling hero - skipping and all! Needless to say his stunts are superb, the sets amazing and the crowd scenes crowded (have there ever been that many merry men ever?).
Allan Dwan was not the greatest silent director - his visual style is not as strong as say Fred Niblo or Rex Ingram - but there are some memorable visuals - and a particularly gorgeous final image.
The film gets off to a rather slow start - I could have done with less of the build-up to the Sherwood scenes, which are certainly the highlight. But Wallace Beery, Enid Bennett and Alan Hale (he played Little John again in 1939) are all excellent. Special mention should go to Sam De Grasse as the villainous Prince John - he is terrific. The rest of the characters don't get much of a look in - it's Fairbanks all the way - and who can resist that?
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