Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves at 30: a joyless hit that should stay in the 90s

Kevin Costner made for a charmless and embarrassingly miscast local legend in a dark and chaotic mess that audiences in 1991 adoredRobin Hood doesn’t have to be like Errol Flynn, and perhaps it’s a fool’s game to try.

But the 1938 swashbuckler The Adventures of Robin Hood, shot in truly glorious Technicolor, was not only the defining film of Flynn’s career, but the standard of who we understand Sir Robin of Locksley to be – a rebel, a romantic, a jester, a happy warrior for justice and, above all, unburdened and light on his feet.

Flynn always had a great sense of himself as an entertainer, and his Robin has those qualities, too.

It wasn’t enough merely to set things right for the poor and oppressed, and win the hand of Maid Marian.

He had to do it with style.So again, Robin Hood doesn’t have to be like Errol Flynn.

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