The Videogum Movie Club: Robin Hood

By Gabe Delahaye / May 17, 2010

Shrug. Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood prequel, or whatever that was, is a completely successful “movie.” It was professionally made by people who know what they are doing, starring professional actors who know what they are doing, based on a beloved folk tale that has remained popular throughout the years precisely because it remains consistently relevant and appealing. By all accounts, the movie had action and adventure and relatively well-rounded characters. The only problem is who cares. I mean, if it was 2010 and the world DIDN’T have a prequel (?) remake of Robin Hood starring old Grouchy Beer Face (so grouchy! so puffy!), no one would bat an eye. We just don’t need it. You could say that about most movies, I suppose, but you could really say it about this movie. The entire thing just felt…unnecessary.

Unless, of course, you are a Tea Bagger.

Am I right Tea Baggers? When that first title card came up talking about how you had to take justice into your own hands when the government was out of control or whatever, I could see Sarah Palin nodding from my window. Don’t tread on Robin Hood! I’m not saying this movie was pro-Tea Bag Movement, but I am saying that the Tea Bag Movement sees everything through tea-colored glasses, and there was definitely a way in which you could imagine them seeing Robin Hood as a modern day racist, homophobic hater of affordable medical coverage for children.

Of course, the movie doesn’t really explain why outlaws are required to aright society, because Robin Hood isn’t an outlaw in this movie. He’s a grouch for sure. And he fights a lot. But he doesn’t actually steal from the rich to give to the poor. Well, one time he steals from the church to give to the poor. But that’s different. I’m not defending the church, since they can barely even be bothered to defend themselves, but I also don’t actually think that taxes are an inherently bad thing, so it’s hard for me to get all up in arms about people being taxed. Besides, a lot of times taxes are the individual contribution to the well-being of society, rather than the nefarious plot of a power-crazed double-agent trying to sow the seeds of civil war in order to further his foreign political station. You know what I mean?

I’m also still not entirely sure why he becomes an outlaw, even though that was supposedly what this whole movie is about. I mean, I know he becomes an outlaw because the king (who is a jerk) declares him to be an outlaw. Got it. But it’s kind of weird how the king stops being a jerk for a long time, and then seems to decide to be a jerk again at the last second. It also seems like he’s mostly mad because one time Robin Hood almost got crushed by two boats, but then it turned out that he didn’t get crushed by two boats, and he was just screaming in the water like ARRGGGHHHHHH and that is what made the French surrender? Was it the screaming, or the not being crushed by two boats? The French were just like “Zut, Robin Hood is Le Best!” Maybe the king was just mad because of how it didn’t make sense. I mean, Robin Hood was never in charge of those armies to begin with, and he didn’t give any rousing Braveheart speeches (on the field of battle, I know he was pretty pumped at the Town Hall Meeting). As best I could tell, he shot some arrows and then disappeared to help his girlfriend. Relax, France. Be consistent, King.

Like I said, though, the actors were very professional. I particularly enjoyed Oscar Isaac as the mean king (so whiny! Stop Whining!!) and Max Von Sydow as Mr. Loxley. He was so blind! I wish he was my dad. Oh, and the smirk monster from Lost was pretty good as Little John. (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH LIL JOHN — dad joke from the future.) And my very favorite part of the movie was in the scene where Lady Marion comes to talk to Robin Hood by the fire and he is wearing a TANK TOP. You know how it was back then. You need something breathable to wear under your CHAIN WALLET MAIL. (I have got the dad jokes, now all I need is the kid!)

My least favorite part of the movie was the ending where it is just blatantly setting up for a sequel. Slow down! I barely even stopped watching this movie yet! I know this was just a prequel to 2 Robin 2 Hood: Sherwood Drift anyway, but there is something particularly pushy about a movie that is so confident in its inevitable follow up when you didn’t even like the first one that much. But fair enough. Have fun. I will be over here, GUARDING MY PORCH.

Did you guys even see this one?