One of the best things about living quietly and simply is that it really doesn't take much to achieve a contented, happy state. My mom, sister and I were able to escape for a while this evening to enjoy the new Robin Hood movie together. Our outing included a visit to that lovely store where many varieties of fun food are available in large quantities for very reasonable prices. More about that later.
Robin Hood (2010) is a Scott Free Film (brother Ridley being at the helm of this one) so right away you have an idea of what to expect: epic battle sequences, stirring music, authentic though artistic representation of history, and a story of valour and honour. This Robin Hood certainly delivers right from the first moments of the cold open - no money montage of which studios, production companies and individuals were responsible for bringing us these two hours and 28 minutes of movie entertainment... a signal to the viewer that the story is more important than the system.
The locations and sets, the costumes and makeup lend verisimilitude, assisting rather than preventing the viewer entering into 12th century England, and the goings-on of Prince John Lackland, Richard the Lionheart, Eleanor of Aquitaine, the English Barons, Godfrey, and King Philip of France. This telling of the tale introduces us to Robin returning to England after the Crusade and how he becomes the outlaw of Nottingham. All the dear, familiar characters from the old stories are present, quickly becoming as dear and familiar as we would hope.
Cate Blanchett as Maid Marion is convincing and well-cast, though at one point, I expected her to tell the gathered soldiers to stand aside so she could take care of the upstart king for she was Elizabeth R! Nonetheless, there doesn't seem to be a role that she cannot handle, and she plays opposite her Robin very nicely. There is good chemistry between the two. Which leaves Mr. Crowe himself - an actor I find extremely attractive (that voice!) but I am equally impressed with his skill at practicing his craft. He portrays these characters so well - men of honour, valour and conviction; sometimes a little broken and in need of being put back together again. There's always a good story in that, isn't there?
We left home in plenty of time (an hour and a half before curtain - the theatre is 20 minutes away) (but we needed snacks) so that we could get good seats (don't like those very-front ones) and let the anticipation build up. Now I am feeling nicely filled up emotionally from a good story well told, and very hung-over from too many Ring-a-los. Nice.
ps - stick around for the closing credits when you see this movie - so creative, and very beautiful!