The Nameless Horror

Robin Hood

Saw this at the weekend and it’s good. Much more BRAVEHEART than PRINCE OF THIEVES, and don’t go if you want to see rollicking good swashbuckling and Alan Rickman, because it has neither. Ridley Scott doesn’t do anything less than gritty with extra mud, and this is no exception. And yes, it’s an origin story rather than a “what I did after being made an outlaw” one, but to be honest, it’s not like we haven’t seen the latter a dozen times already, so why not do the “before”? Crowe’s accent wanders a little and (the very good) King John’s switch back to villain after going from villain to “I could be a hero!” is a mite quick - I get why it happens, and I rather suspect there was a ten-minute scene somewhere there that got cut; it’s not a movie-breaker, but worth noting - but overall it’s good. Decent script, action’s violent without being bloody (hello, 12A rating), there’s character arcs and people acting and stuff, and the Robin-Marian relationship works, and changes over time, nicely. The villains (led, as every movie bad guy group is at the moment, by Mark Strong) are suitably villainous, the heroes are suitably rugged, and Friar Tuck is suitably drunk. Also, nice to see the Magna Carta getting a look in on a Robin Hood tale, since that’s what King John is best known for in real life.

Also, Max Von Sydow gets to use the phrase “tumescent growth”.