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"There Was A Rich Man From Nottingham..."

  • Dec 21, 2000
  • by
Pros: great story; excellent script; cinematography; scenery; Christian Slater

Cons: I just don't like Kevin Costner.

Everyone knows the story of Robin Hood, England's outlaw who stole from the rich to give to the poor. Robin of Locksley fought against the evil Sheriff of Nottingham and won the heart of Maid Marian, as well as led a band of "Merry Men." The story has been told in many forms, from Disney to Robin Hood: Men in Tights. The best adaptation of this story, in my opinion (aside from the Disney movie), is none other than Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.

The subplots of this movie are terrific. Robin Hood (Kevin Costner) befriends a Moor named Azeem (Morgan Freeman) and heads to England. Once arriving, he finds that his house and family have been destroyed, leaving only the blind Duncan (Walter Sparrow). They run into Little John (Nick Brimble), Will Scarlett (Christian Slater) and the rest of the Merry Men and start stealing from the rich to give to the poor. Along the way, Robin falls in love with Maid Marian (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio).

The scenery is fabulous. The set dressing is great. The cinematography (Douglas Milsome) is absolutely unparalleled. I'm usually not a Costner fan, but I really like this film. The only Costner movie that comes close to Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves in the scenery area is Waterworld, a film which I hated.

The direction is very good, too. Director Kevin Reynolds has also done films such as Waterworld and One Eight Seven. Obviously, his direction is inconsistent at best. I'm glad that he didn't turn this film into a flop.

The script (Pen Densham & John Watson) is what carries the film. As I said before, the story is just great. It's a lot of fun to watch. The cast is all right, though Christian Slater is the only one I feel deserves a mention.

If you haven't seen this flick, you should give it a try. The stunts are pretty cool, there's a love story, and even some comedic elements.


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Candice Cain ()
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I own the Candy Cain Travel Co. in Brookhaven, NY. I am a certified Professional Bridal Consultant with the Association of Bridal Consultants and my agency is certified by IATA and CLIA. I specialize … more
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Kevin Costner's lousy English accent is a small obstacle in this often exciting version of the Robin Hood fable. That aside, it's refreshing to have a preface to the old story in which we meet the robber hero of Sherwood Forest as a soldier in King Richard's Crusades, coming home to find his people under siege from the cruelties of the Sheriff of Nottingham (Alan Rickman). After Robin and his community of outcasts and fighters take to the trees, director Kevin Reynolds (Fandango,187) is on more familiar narrative ground, and he goes for the gusto with lots of original action (Robin shoots two arrows simultaneously from his bow in two directions). Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, as Marion, makes a convincing damsel in distress, and Morgan Freeman brings dignity to his role as Robin's Moor friend. Alan Rickman, however, gets the most attention for his scene-chewing role as the rotten sheriff, an almost campy performance that is highly entertaining but perhaps a little out of sorts with the rest of the film.--Tom Keogh
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