When Robin and his Moorish companion come to England and the tyranny of the Sheriff of Nottingham, he decides to fight back as an outlaw.When Robin and his Moorish companion come to England and the tyranny of the Sheriff of Nottingham, he decides to fight back as an outlaw.When Robin and his Moorish companion come to England and the tyranny of the Sheriff of Nottingham, he decides to fight back as an outlaw.
The story doesn't particularly need explaining, but for people who have lived on Mars for their whole lives here it is. Robin of Locksley, a young soldier, returns from the Crusades to find the city of Nottingham and its surrounding area terrorised by the evil Sherrif of Nottingham (Alan Rickman). Robin takes refuge in the nearby Sherwood Forest, where he gathers a band of woodland outlaws who are always stealing money and treasure taken by the Sherrif and giving it back to the poor. His dashing antics impress Maid Marian (Mary Elisabeth Mastrantonio), a childhood friend, and he quickly becomes popular with the poor and honest folk who nickname him Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves.
The film is very old-fashioned, but it occasionally gives away its 1991 release status with modern touches (the fancy camera-work in which the camera is seemingly fixed upon an arrow as it is fired at a target; the introduction of a Moorish warrior character [Morgan Freeman] to broaden the film's cultural reference; Rickman's self-deprecating pantomimic turn as the wicked Sherrif). On the whole, it is an entertaining film with a good balance between the action and the romance. The best performance - surprisingly - comes from Michael Wincott who oozes menace as the Sherrif's despicable cousin Guy of Gisbourne. There are some quite significant factual errors, the best (by "best" I mean "funniest") of which is when Robin and his Moorish companion stand at the foot of the white cliffs of Dover and Robin tells him: "by nightfall we will dine with my father!" Quite a feat, since Nottinghamshire is about 200 miles away and this pair are travelling on foot!
- Dec 10, 2003