A 1991 movie starring Kevin Costner
, Morgan Freeman
, Alan Rickman
, and Christian Slater
, with an appearance by Sean Connery
The plot is not much different than earlier adaptations of the tale of Robin Hood. Robin of Locksley (Kevin Costner) escapes to England after fighting the Turks in the Crusades. With him is a Moor named Azeem(Morgan Freeman) who will stay with Robin until he repays Robin for saving his life.
Upon Robin's return, he finds that his father has been murdered and the Sheriff of Nottingham has taken rule over the lands. Robin heads to the Forest of Sherwood where he joins a band of exiled villagers and becomes their leader. He leads the people to overthrow the Sheriff and his minions, as well as win the heart of his childhood friend, Maid Marian (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio).
The movie tried to be a serious and modern remake of a classic story, the definitive Robin Hood movie. It had a US$50million budget and big Hollywood stars to try to make it a summer blockbuster. It grossed $165million in US theaters alone, so it did a good job.
Morgan Freeman really stole the show for this one. He plays a Muslim, perhaps the smartest and nicest one in the entire world of film. He shows knowledge like the making of gunpowder, cesearan section, and building telescopes, all while the Christians still fear demons in the forest.
A child went up to him and said "Did God paint you?" Freeman answers "Yes." "Why?" the child asks. "Because Allah loves wondrous variety." I wouldn't call this totally fair to Islam, since there were some nasty Turkish barbarians in the beginning, but this is a refreshing start; you rarely see good Muslims in movies.
Viewers had to nitpick on a few issues. First of all, Kevin Costner did not have a british accent, which is a gigantic requirement for his character. Actually, none of the characters have a british accent. Also, it wasn't filmed in the real Sherwood forest (the wrong kind of trees maybe?). Historically, it's trash. The fact that it features Kevin Costner can make it a good movie or a bad one depending on your taste. However, one critic pointed out that in every Robin Hood, Robin is the least interesting character; the cast around him we remember. Visually it looks good, with realistic setting and detail.
The movie tries to play it off as a romance and drama. There is some comedy in it, as well as a few memorable lines like "I'll cut your heart out with a spoon." Overall, it's worth watching at least once.
Some time later, Mel Brooks made a great parody of this with Robin Hood: Men in Tights. Disney also made a sequel with Princess of Thieves.