The 2010 version of Robin Hood has definitely had some mixed reviews along the way, but speaking for myself, when I went to see it in the cinema, I enjoyed it quite a bit.
England - a country near bankrupt, it's men fighting an expensive war in a foreign land, with social division and a large population left skint by ever increasing taxes. Wait a minute, no - it's not 2010, it's actually only 1199 A.D!
Fighting in the army of King Richard in France expert archer Robin Longstride (Crowe) ends up (through various early script gymnastics) returning to England with three comrades to report both the death of the King and to return the family sword of Robert of Locksley to Nottingham and Robert's father and wife Maid Marion (Max Von Sydow and Cate Blanchett). Once there, through a couple more script contortions he and his men remain in Nottingham to fight against some local injustices and also perhaps a greater threat to England herself.
Although the film does certainly take a good 40 minutes or so to set up all it's strands (there's probably a lot of cut material from this section as the result does feel a little clunky in places) and then begin to weave them together once it does get itself into high gear what emerges is actually a very entertaining, lavishly produced and expertly marshalled epic story filled with great performances, battles, witty dialogue, and oddly relevant themes about the relationship between the people of a country and those who lead them and in fact the story also (with some usual historical errors notwithstanding) actually weaves neatly (if not perhaps seamlessly) into the rough history and context of England prior to a certain document of 1215.
Of course, Scott and Crowe have done this before with Gladiator but this isn't quite the simple 'Gladiator 2' even I thought it would be from trailers before I saw it. It's an origin story instead with several notable characters (including the famous Sheriff of Nottingham) not really featuring as much as one would expect. Russell Crowe (yes, the accent is a bit wobbly but at least he tried) is the most commanding he's been in a while and his relationship with Blanchett is nicely developed and Scott himself can marshall this kind of massive project with seeming ease.
There was clearly always a longer edit of Robin Hood out there other than the theatrical one - it's Ridley Scott after all!! And as such it's not the least bit surprising that this is a Director's Cut which Blu-Ray will make look suitably impressive!