Robin Hood
(guest review by Dante Bean)

So I kept hearing about how awful this was. But I dig the Crowe and Ridley has always been good to me. However, I really wish they had stuck to their original "Nottingham" premise. While this origin story is mostly fresh, I would have much preferred a take where Hood is a menace and the Sheriff is our protagonist.

The cast is entirely on auto pilot here. Because these are by and large AAA actors, that isn't really a bad thing. But no performance stuck out. Crowe is literally Gladiator in chain mail. Every actor has more or less made this movie before. I will say that if Mark Strong (recently in Sherlock and Kick Ass) becomes type cast as your go to bad guy, I'm really okay with that.

It's overlong, and it feels like it. The entire second act is mostly a snore. You can see the rewrites on the screen for the script. Things get forced and often happen for no reason. Hood and Marion don't get along, and without warning are in love. The battles have no jaw dropping wow moments, but decent enough. Again, I think Scott could do this type of thing in his sleep. One annoying thing, however. Cut were made here for the PG-13 rating. For a movie where people are getting slashed up, getting riddled with arrows and taking axes to their faces, there is no blood in the entire movie until our primary villain bites it. That is annoying nonsense. I'm not a gore junkie or anything, but it makes the whole thing feel like a reenactment and takes me out of it. Kind of like what they did to Pearl Harbor.

Lots of reviews bitch about how this has nothing to do with Robin Hood at all, and doesn't even address the character we know. I find this to be bullshit. From an Entertainment Weekly review.

"Things you won't be seeing in Robin Hood:

* A scene in which Robin steals from the rich and gives to the poor. - Makes me wonder if they even saw the movie.
* A moment where Robin's men behave in a way that could remotely be described as "merry." - Same thing. Some of the more annoying scenes are his men, which are often used for comic relief and can be seen singing and dancing in pubs, celebrating and banging whores.
* A pinch of lightness (often), comedy (there is TOO MUCH comic relief) or adventure (the whole thing is an adventure flick).

Other complaints such as the lack of legendary moments (the blind archery contest, the tension between he and the Sheriff) are irrelevant since they HAVE NOT HAPPENED YET.

3 Things I Liked About This Movie
- Pretty interesting as an origin story
- Scott knows how to film a bunch of mangy dudes getting hacked up
- Mark Strong is a delight

3 Things I Didn't Like About This Movie
- Heavy editing for a PG-13 rating
- Obviously written, and rewritten, and rewritten and rewritten again script
- The entire second act triple dips into boring too many times

I'm not saying this is a masterpiece, it isn't. I'm not even saying you should go see it, it's just alright. But please beware of the often frivolous complaints, they're often without merit. And much like Scott's Kingdom of Heaven, I suspect that there is a really good movie here that will come way of the eventual Director's Cut DVD, but right now, it's just a mediocre one.