With a name such as mine, I have always emulated Robin Hood as a kind of patron saint. It was therefore with great anticipation that I went to see the new Robin Hood movie.
I was not impressed. The film offers neither good character development nor the type of sustained suspense of an action thriller. Completely bereft of all poetry and romance (not to mention the absence of any sword fighting or a good quarter staff brawl), the movie had little continuity with the Robin Hood of myth.
But there was one thing the movie gets right: Robin Hood was no socialist.
We know very little about the historical Robin Hood. But we do know that he was not a proto-Obama figure, redistributing wealth to achieve a utopia of economic quality.
But didn’t Robin Hood steal from the rich to give to the poor? If the legends are to be believed, he merely attempted to give back to the people what the government and the corrupt clergy had taken from them. Ridley Scott gets this exactly right in portraying Robin Hood as the defender of a people being taxed to death by a corrupt government.