Robin Hood is the newest version of the classic tale of folklore, this time starring Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service), Jamie Foxx (Django Unchained), and Ben Mendelsohn (Ready Player One). The film follows Robin of Loxley, a lord in medieval England, as he trains to become a thief that steals from the rich to give to the poor.
Ultimately, this movie seems like it was released too late. Big-budget action fare like this would have been a huge draw a decade ago. Now, without franchise recognition or a superstar name attached, films like this simply don’t resonate with audiences anymore. An even bigger problem, though, is that it just isn’t very good.
The movie starts off strongly, with a lot of intriguing aspects. The first big battle sequence makes it feel almost like a modern war film, which is unique and original. Although this scene is certainly over-the-top and inaccurate to the period in which the story was set, it is still crazy and a lot of fun. Unfortunately, the movie does not stick with this enjoyably unique style of action, instead opting to return to the more traditional medieval battle tactics for the rest of the runtime.
The training sequences were also quite enjoyable. Although they don’t do anything to stand out among other heist film training sequences, these scenes are almost always the most enjoyable part of the genre. This is where the actors’ comedic chops are allowed to shine, as the dialogue in these scenes is infused with wit and charm.
After the first few or so action scenes, it feels almost as if the filmmakers gave up on trying to make the movie stand out and instead opted to just repeat the same action sequences from every other version of the story. It becomes boring and redundant, with an overwhelming feeling that it was a waste of potential.
The execution of the film is pretty rough as a whole. The cinematography is overly shaky in many parts. The use of green screen is also far too frequent and obvious. All of the third act looks like it was shot in front of a green screen. That being said, when there were actual sets, the set design is actually quite impressive.
Taron Egerton, Jamie Foxx, and Ben Mendelsohn all do very well in their roles. They each bring their typical charm and wit to the characters. Eve Hewson, who plays Marian, is not a particularly good actress. Compounding that is the way in which she is presented. Although she is supposed to be the voice of the lower class, she is always presented clean, in a pristine white dress, and lit with high key lighting. This was extremely frustrating.
Overall, Robin Hood wasn’t a particularly good movie. It has some strong moments and is mostly entertaining, but largely feels like a waste.
Robin Hood is now playing in theaters everywhere.