What is it with Robin Hood films never quite working? Aside from the Disney one I’ve never heard of one that’s received no source of criticism. In fact, the one probably with the biggest cult status at this point is the film starring Kevin Cosner??? That being said it’s been quite a while since we have had a Robin Hood film, the last one being that film starring Russell Crowe??? from 2010. A film I have actually commented on before saying I wasn’t a fan of. But now in 2018 we have another one out.
Don’t bother looking at the writers, I couldn’t find anything they had done prior to this. This time we have the director Otto Bathurst, if you haven’t heard of him, that’s because he hasn’t directed any films prior to this. He is a TV director. Directing a few episodes of Peaky Blinders as well as one episode of Black Mirror, if you’re curious, it is the episode titled National Anthem.
Ok, I went to this film thinking that I might get something interesting. I was sadly, sadly mistaken. Robin Hood of Loxley, played by Taron Egerton crusades, but is then later sent home after declining an order. When he gets home the Sherriff of Nottingham, played by Ben Mendelsohn (who seems to always want to be the villain) has closed all his property and is drying up the taxes through the roof. Not to mention his fiancée Marian, played by Eve Hewson, has believed him to be dead so as a result has moved on and married Will Scarlet, played by Jamie Dornan. With nothing left to lose he’s taken up training with a man who followed him home, named Little John, played by Jamie Foxx after freeing him and saving his son during the process of the crusade. Now Robin- or Rob as he is constantly referred to in this film because the film thinks it’s gangster or something like that… has to steal from the Sheriff and give back to the people, whilst also getting in his good graces as a lord to try and find where the money is coming in for this supposed war effort.
I didn’t go to Robin Hood with too much expectation, but dear God, it’s no secret. Robin Hood is one of the most ineptly made films of the year! I am staggered that this film is as bad as it is. Everything’s all over the place. The action scenes are appallingly shot, the direction is non-existent, the actors are giving terrible performances- none of them believable, and this film has absolutely no idea what it wants to be. It’s clearly not a historical one, they threw that out the window, not to mention the costume designs have absolutely no period accuracy. In fact, it was so bad that my house mate actually believed the film was a modern re-interpretation, and was shocked when I informed him it was actually taking place in the time of Robin Hood.
Everything about the film feels completely out of place. The direction of this film clearly has a fetish for open fire, because there are tonnes of scenes with fire in them. Especially fire bursting out for no good reason. Not to mention the way the fire crossbows and arrows, making it look like a trailer for a Call of Duty game.
The film also seems to want to turn Robin Hood into a Super Hero, because everything has to be a Super Hero film now. Not helped by the fact that the costume for Robin Hood is going to be very familiar to anyone who is a fan of the series Arrow. In fact, it looks so much like that, from just the trailer alone, it wouldn’t surprise me if DC comics tried to sue them.
Lionsgate is the studio bank rolling the film and between this and Power Rangers, it is very clear they are trying to start some more franchises to compete with Marvel. But with Power Rangers failing at the Box Office and this likely to do the same.
Taron Egerton is the only one really putting his all into this. It actually shows he is pretty decent all things considered. His character though is just so bland and boring, but you could just replace the actor with anyone, same with all the characters.
Little John for example is so weird. He is basically the trainer character. He genuinely does have a few bad ass moments but not really enough to warrant a good actor like himself in this role. In fact, it definitely seemed like they were borrowing quite a bit from Morgan Freemans character, in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, and the more you borrow from that film, the better off you will be. Yeah, I actually liked the Kevin ??? Film, it’s deliciously camp.
If you are expecting any of the other famous merry men in this film, sad to say they are not really in this film. The only one really that I can mention is Friar Tuck who is played by Tim Minchin, just another one of the odd casting choices for the film. His accent in Nottinghamshire stands out so much, you’ve got to wonder what the hell they were thinking. It is again another waste of a talented person. Not to mention that Jamie Dornan seems to be really out of his element and the script fails him more than anyone else and you can see where the arc is going from a mile away. In a better film he would have been one of the best parts of it, unfortunately it’s squandered and that’s just with going ‘oh, it’s that guy from 50 shades of grey’, and after that series is fully done, I’m amazed anyone even has a career.
This film is shot appallingly. This is one of the worst shot films I have seen all year. The cuts are terrible, it reminded me very much of that Assassins Creed movie I reviewed, in that I was struggling to spot any shot that lasted longer than 5 seconds. The film is shot and edited like a trailer. This is even more shocking when you consider that it was actual archery used in the film. The directors hired actual archery experts to train the actors, but they’re wasted in this film because the shots don’t allow for us to see the skill involved. Not to mention that half the arrows are fricking CG! What is the point of hiring experts to train your actors, when half your film’s going to be computer generated anyway. If you haven’t suspected, much like the set, these special effects are laughable.
I’m not going to lie; Robin Hood was a difficult one to get through. I sat through this film and by the time I got out to the Black Friday sales, I realised I had lost 2 hours of my life to this film and lost out on purchasing Dark Souls Remastered for £10, which for those not in the know is a frigging bargain for a massive game. Just so I could see the film on time. So, forgive me if I’m a bit salty about it.
All joking aside, this film really is genuinely one of the worst films I have seen all year. It is appalling in every sense of the word. It borrows from several action clichés and it seems like they borrowed a lot from Guy Ritchie’s, King Arthur Legend of the Sword, which this film reminded me of quite heavily. Much like that film, this one is laughably bad. It has no historical accuracy so there is no point going for that, and it is not even that fun. The film doesn’t really embrace its ridiculousness, it tries to act very serious.
My god is it bad in every sense of the word. The acting is appalling, the film has no direction whatsoever and is forced to go into several different parts. The dialogue is atrocious and because of the cinematography and special effects it is barely watchable.
The fact that everyone who went to the cinema when I saw this stayed in there is amazing to me. I wanted to leave so many times. The film is so generic that it’s actually boring. This is such a boring movie. Save your money, there are a lot better films coming out in December. The amount of money you would’ve put forward to this ticket, you can now buy a really great Christmas gift for someone, or just do something nice for your day. And obviously your ticket would help fund a sequel to this tripe, which the ending of the film actually teases. Thanks.
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