Robin Hood Directed by: Ridley Scott Starring: Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchette, Mark Strong Rating: R Release Date: May 14, 2010
TRAILER SCORE: 6/10
MY THOUGHTS: Ever since Russell Crowe hefted a phone at a guy making minimum wage and then threw a momentous hissy-fit, he's morphed, at warp speed, from a snarling gladiator to a pudgy infant prone to public tantrums. Should an actor's private shenanigans influence the way we look at his art, especially when that actor is as undeniably fine-tuned as Crowe? I don't know--let's ask Mr. Cruise if anyone's opinion of him changed after he bounced around on Oprah's couch like a wild-eyed lunatic.
I understand that Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe are engaged in a bromance of epic proportions, but you don't get the d*ck to play Robin Hood, no matter how good he is at Let's Pretend. Robin Hood is beloved chiefly for his distinct lack of d*ckishness. I don't care if you have Russell bursting out of the water in slow-mo, roaring his balding little head off; he's an arrogant bastard, and loudly so. He's voluminously obnoxious, so high is he on his own talent, which is, admittedly, prodigious. The roles that are perfect for Crowe at this point are the Ed Hoffmans of the world: hefty, prickish, manipulative and with a raging God complex. He should basically always play a geniune outlet of his own personality.
The trailer itself is uninspired, a measly bit of seatack for everyone who loved Gladiator. As I watched it, I thought, "At least it has Cate Blanchette," whom I adore as one of the most magnificent, classiest actors of our day...and then I thought, "She has to kiss that fat, phone hurling man-baby on his big man-baby mouth. Yuck." Ridley Scott loves his epics and it must have been true love the first time he and Crowe's eyes met from across the room, but I'm anticipating another 1492 when I look at Robin Hood: you know, vaguely historic in that "Hey, aren't you so and so from where ever?" kind of way, pretty to look at, and overly smug about its hero's flawed humanity. It looks gritty and dirty and Crowe has his earnest face on and wears a leather vest. You present the world with Robin Hood directly after Gladiator and you'd have a more avid response. At this point, too much time has gone by, and we've all had to tolerate Crowe openly being himself for way too long.