Film review: Robin Hood (2018) is a trite retelling

Jamie Foxx and Taron Egerton in Robin Hood.
Jamie Foxx and Taron Egerton in Robin Hood.

THE reincarnation of Robin Hood (2018) delivers as many cliches as enemies in an action-packed attempt at turning a classic into a contemporary hit.

In this latest superhero version, there are no merry men of Sherwood Forest and the plight of the poor is set in a bleak mining town.

Modern-day Lord Robin of Loxley (Taron Egerton) starts out as a rather unlikable aristocrat and hero-in-waiting without a cause.

Then Cupid throws him an unexpected arrow and the lovesick Robin must part company with Marian to answer the call of military service.

He joins the British crusade against Arabia and, after a particularly bloody battle, saves the life of Little John (Jamie Foxx).

Egerton delivers some epically cheesy lines in a remake blatantly written to accompany some big screen action in the hope of a sequel.

The only redeeming feature is the evolving friendship between the new superhero, dubbed The Hood, and his Moorish mentor (Little John) in their quest to steal from the rich to give to the poor.

When Robin reunites with lost love Marian (Eve Hewson), she is running a soup kitchen in the mines and seemingly a woman of independent mind.

Believing her true love to be dead, she has a new love interest in would-be hero Will (Jamie Dornan) who has his own political agenda.

How disappointing then to see the sassy Marian of the opening scenes later morph into a simpering female sidekick.

Nonetheless, she rallies her man in the fight to conquer evil with sweet mumblings of, “if not you, then who? If not now, then when?”

Will the arrow-firing superhero singlehandedly defeat the Nazi-like Sheriff of Nottingham (Ben Mendelsohn) and in turn, the hellishly sinful Cardinal?

Thankfully, two-hours of trite storytelling levelled at an undemanding audience are interspersed with smatterings of humour from a Beanie-clad Tim Minchin, in the role of a rather lean Friar Tuck.

Robin Hood (2018)

PG-13

Starring: Taron Egerton, Jamie Foxx, Ben Mendelsohn

Director: Otto Bathurst

Two and a half stars

In cinemas now