Will Taron Egerton’s “Robin Hood” be the New “A Knight’s Tale”?

Matthew Loffhagen
Summit Entertainment
(Photo: Summit Entertainment)

Having watched the first full trailer (or the second if you count the teaser from a couple of months ago) for the new “Robin Hood” starring Taron Egerton, I’m weirdly on board.

This movie looks absolutely ridiculous. It’s a big, overly polished, illogical trailer that’s filled with historical inaccuracies.

At the same time, it looks like it might just be a lot of fun.

I like a lot of what I see here. Taron Egerton is always a pleasure to see on screen, and Jamie Foxx does a great job as this movie’s Morgan Freeman. I like that the character of Little John is now more of a trainer and a mentor than a sidekick, as it gives him a little more relevance to the story and shifts the balance of power when compared to “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”.

I’m also weirdly on board with the pointless casino scene. None of this is in any way rooted in reality, but then, the whole Robin Hood myth is more fiction than fact at the best of times.

It’s Okay To Be Silly

Certainly, historical accuracy doesn’t make a Robin Hood story more interesting. Ridley Scott’s “Robin Hood” starring Russell Crowe was an attempt to make a movie that was more grounded in the real history of the time, with all its Magna Carter action. That film didn’t exactly make for engaging viewing (although I may be the only person alive who actually enjoyed it).

Russell Crowe Robin Hood
Source: Universal

If accuracy can’t save a Robin Hood film, then perhaps anachronisms shouldn’t necessarily be used to condemn one.

I admit I balked when I saw Egerton’s Robin wearing a longsleeve T-shirt, clearly stitched together by a sewing machine. His black leather jacket also looks a bit stupid.

I also think it’s weird that Egerton is using his “Kingsman” London chav accent for a supposed nobleman in Medieval Nottingham, which I suspect is merely the result of typecasting for an actor that’s more versatile than most people believe.

Robin Hood and Little John
Source: Summit Entertainment

Nevertheless, based on the trailer, there’s some solid actors in this movie, delivering fun and engaging performances. There’s some big action spectacles that, while ridiculous, also look like a lot of fun.

I Will Fong You

This movie reminds me a lot of “A Knight’s Tale” from first glance. That film is a similar mismatched anachronistic mess, and yet, thanks to the charm of the main cast, it’s easy to overlook its frankly weird interpretation of a medieval time period. “We Will Rock You” can be forgiven as a deliberate stylistic choice.

I’m willing to give the new “Robin Hood” the benefit of the doubt. If the Kevin Costner “Prince of Thieves” is the benchmark for a movie adaptation of this classic myth, then it’s not like this film needs to be overly gritty and serious to live up to the character’s legacy on the big screen.

Even if this film is yet again steering very far away from the classic Merry Men. Clearly nobody but Mel Brooks has the guts to make a movie in which Robin Hood wears tights.