Hollywood likes reinvention. So much so, that every few years, an old story is recycled into a new adaptation that the film makers will be successful at the box office.
Hollywood’s most recent reinvention of Robin Hood occurred in 2010. Stepping into the shoes of the legendary outlaw was Russell Crowe. In this movie, Robin Hood starts with the name of Robin Longstride. Maid Marian, Robin’s love interest, played by Cate Blanchett was reinvented as the widow of an aristocrat. Marion’s father in law, Sir Walter Loxley (Max Von Sydow) convinces Robin to impersonate his son, at least long enough to prevent the crown from confiscating his land. While Robin and Marian are pretending to live in wedded bliss, Godfrey (Mark Strong), a member of court who secretly helping the French plan an invasion of England. Robin is soon drawn into the dangerous mix of politics, secret aspirations and the threat of war.
Robin Hood has been done to death by Hollywood. Every generation has had it’s own Robin Hood.
But what I liked about this adaptation is that the filmmakers attempted to ground the story into history of the period, instead of relying purely on the myth. Another factor that appealed to me is that Marian was rewritten from the standard aristocratic damsel in distress to a strong, capable woman who stands up for what she believes in.
I recommend it.