It's really hard to call 'Robin Hood Prince of Thieves' overrated since it did not receive critical acclaim, but the box office success of the miserable film was huge. Everyone I knew loved it and still some people admit they enjoy watching the merry Kevin Costner lead his band of robbers through Sherwood Forrest.
I was really excited to see this movie as a teenager. As a wee lad I was thrilled by the original 'The Adventures of Robin Hood'. My dad bought me a toy bow and arrow set and I shot empty pop cans off the fence with it. When I was twelve I upgraded to a compound bow and shot at targets placed upon hay bales. I also can't count how many times I would run about with toy sword in hand pretending I was kicking the shit out of Prince John and robbing the filthy rich.
The movie came and I took my high school sweetheart. I sat there and thought what a piece of dog turd. Not only did Kevin Costner not look, act, or talk like any Robin Hood anyone imagined, but he displayed zero chemistry with the horrible actress Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio. The look of the movie was dark, dreary, and really never captured the life of any of the legends. The only saving grace of the movie was Alan Rickman who really seemed to have fun with role. The dialogue was muted and even the swordplay was mediocre. Don't get me started on the ridiculous attempts at humor.
Now when you think of Robin Hood you normally associate it with family fare, but is showing the Sheriff of Nottingham trying to rape Maid Marian really necessary? Does the movie need to start off with chopping off hands? Since when did anyone view Robin Hood as the brooding thoughtful type and not the character that was full of life and love?
We walked out of the theatre and before I could apologize for taking her to see it she started to skip and tell me how she loved it. I walked along side her thanking God I didn't say something.
And then came the Bryan Adams song. Everyone in my generation knows it for you couldn't escape it. The love ballad sung by our favorite Canadian hit the airways at full steam. Every couple I knew in high school had it designated as their song. I even heard it being played in various retail outfits and yes even at weddings. I wonder if those couples who chose that song for their nuptuals feel ashamed of it.
The song would just not go away. Every station you tuned into had it playing for what seemed like an endless loop. It was miserable I tell you.
A trip down memory lane:
"I draw on my memories but blended with a lot of fantasy...but let's set the record straight on something! The Summer of '69 has nothing to do with the actual year 1969. It's about making love and looking back at the good old times." - Bryan Adams