For many of us, there’s always one or two films that we remember very distinctly and fondly. We recall exactly when we saw it, how excited we were to see in on the big screen for the 1st time, and lots of other details related to the movie. I am blessed with lots of those memories. I really am! Then again, I am not what you would call your “average” movie-goer. For me, “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves” is just one of many.
It was an exciting time for movies. The year was 1991, I was still in college at the time, but I was keenly aware of films. I had my subscription to Premiere Magazine and I always bought by Entertainment Weekly Guide to Summer Movies hot off the press. So, I was very excited about the buzz surrounding some of the films coming out that year (“Terminator 2: Judgment Day”, “JFK”, “Beauty & the Beast”, “The Fisher King”, “The Last Boy Scout”, “Mobsters”, “New Jack City”, “Run”, “The Rocketeer”, “Regarding Henry”, “Fried Green Tomatoes”, “Rush”, and “Silence of the Lambs” – WHAT A YEAR!!!) and I knew a lot about them. Back then, print media was alive and well and the Internet had yet to become the easily accessible avenue of information that it is today.
I have always been a fan of Fantasy as a genre. Ask anyone who knows me. So, when you put Kevin Costner in a role that didn’t seem very like him and it’s in the Fantasy genre, I had to see it. It seems like a lifetime ago that I read that Costner was having problems with his British accent. Can you imagine? In the film he actually only “uses” an accent twice, and both times are utter failures. But hey – at least it showed that he cared enough to try, right? Yes, I remember a lot of details about this movie. Of course, who could forget that song??? “Everything I Do” by Bryan Adams was a monster hit that year. It won a Grammy, spent 7 weeks at #1 on Billboard, and was nominated for an Oscar; it was that big.
If you go back and revisit a film (such as I do on a regular basis) that you have fond memories of and recall all sorts of details about SEEING it for the very 1st time, you may be both shocked and delighted all over again. I myself am always shocked at the age of some of the actors in such films. For example, Morgan Freeman in “Robin Hood” seems to be a older man – I know it has been almost 2 decades – but compared to his age today, it seems the man has aged 40 years! Alan Rickman is known to many young movie-goers as Professor Snape from the Harry Potter films, but this was his 2nd major blockbuster hit for American audiences. He looks to so much more robust and energetic in “Robin Hood”! His camp and over-the-top lines are priceless in “Robin Hood” though! (Without question, he steals the whole movie!)
I also find myself delighted by some of these actors too. Morgan Freeman plays Azeem, the noble Moor who is full of charm and intelligence. It is SUCH a different role form what Morgan usually does! Rickman has been cast so many times in films to utilize his sarcastic voice that you often forget he can do comedic roles and pulls off some amazing lines in the process! So, even though you see how young they were when they made this movie, you also find yourself delighted by how courageous they were as actors back then. Revisiting a movie can bring all kinds of wonders to you, especially when you haven’t seen it in a LONG while!
I was a big Costner fan at the time, as well as being a fan of Morgan Freeman & Christian Slater. It had action, romance, an epic ballad song to go with it, one of the best movie scores ever composed, some fantastic cinematography, and one of the oldest heroic tales known to man. I am a big Robin Hood fan as well. I have been so ever since Errol Flynn donned his green tights and swash-buckled his way into Olivia de Havilland’s heart. Did you know that the love story of Robin Hood & Maid Marian is the oldest (and greatest) love story known as “popular fiction”? It predates the tales of King Arthur and Camelot, and it was quite possible based on real history. Regardless, the tale is a classic one, filled with romance and action as our hero rises to the occasion to save the people of England from a would-be tyrant.
I love this movie for all that it contains, from the casting to the script, the action to the story. I don’t recommend it often to people because I think they will find it a little grim at parts and won’t by Costner as Robin Hood. It isn’t a truly GREAT film, but I list it among one of MY favorites. So, if you are in the mood to revisit a “classic” (I guess that’s what a great film from 1991 would qualify as), and you like adventure films, then by all means check out “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”!
…and that’s it for this edition of THE REEL VOICE
- Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) (pagesunbound.wordpress.com)