A few words about…™ Robin and Marian — in Blu-ray

The image and audio transfer, are typically Columbia, which means, superb. 4 Stars

New discoverers of Richard Lester’s Robin and Marian, a paean to aging in the middle ages, will find more than a bit of resemblance to Tony Harvey’s wonderful The Lion in Winter, which came eight years previous.

Listen to the score of Robin, and you’ll find the textures of John Barry’s work in Lion. And then, of course, there are James Goldman’s screenplays.

The major news, at the time of release, was that Audrey Hepburn was returning to film for the first time in a decade – since her starring role in Wait Until Dark.

Her magnificently delicate features, were showing a bit of bottle age – very much in sync with the appearance of Sean Connery, both the same age, heading toward fifty.

What always struck me about this film, was the weight of things, and how difficult it was for former warriors of a certain age, to lift, forget about fighting with huge steel swords. This is seen in no more obvious light, than in the final battle between Mr. Connery, and the extraordinary Robert Shaw, as the Sheriff of Nottingham, who had made Robin’s life a bit problematic decades earlier, when he was light on his feet, as the great Robin of Sherwood.

This is a small film, with a stellar cast that beautifully stands the test of time.

For those concerned about such things, I had originally thought that this was a new line of MOD titles coming from Sony, of Columbia titles. The disc is, in fact, pressed, regardless of distribution and manufacture.

The image and audio transfer, are typically Columbia, which means, superb.

Image – 5

Audio – 5

Pass / Fail – Pass

Upgrade from DVD – Yes!

Highly Recommended

RAH

Published by

Robert Harris

editor,member

17 Comments

  1. Working titles for the musical version:

    Fifty Is The New Fifty
    My Fair Marian
    Naughty Nottingham
    A Hard Day's Knight

    Okay, maybe not…but definitely a future purchase.:thumbs-up-smiley:

  2. This is a wonderful film. My impression from a prior theater presentation is that ithe film was soft looking, much like the “Great Train Robbery” and other films of that era. Am I mistaken?

    I am unaware of any MOD Blu- rays Do such items exist outside of pirated versions. Do such items exist? Thanks.

  3. I am really looking forward to seeing this on Blu. In many ways apart from Errol Flynn's version of Robin Hood this is my favourite film about Robin. The John Barry score is magnificent and Connery's last lines of the film always bring a tear to my eyes.

  4. Billy Batson

    we need more Blu-rays of films photographed by David Watkin.

    Absolutely! THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE & MARAT/SADE come instantly to mind. Unfortunately, those films are owned by MGM, so I'm not holding my breath.

  5. I don't know. Filmstruck is a very specific niche audience. THE DEVILS has never been released on DVD in the US, and only from the BFI in the UK, not Warner; again, for a very specific niche audience. Of course one can always hope.

  6. Wow! Thank you, Mr. Harris. This release was totally beneath my radar. I love this film. I remember being much taken aback by the ending on my first viewing. Then appreciating how appropriate it was. Fantastic cast. Richard Lester is one of my favorite directors. I wish his Musketeer films (including the somewhat forgotten sequel) would be restored & re-released. Again. Thanks.

  7. Randal Gist

    Wow! Thank you, Mr. Harris. This release was totally beneath my radar. I love this film. I remember being much taken aback by the ending on my first viewing. Then appreciating how appropriate it was. Fantastic cast. Richard Lester is one of my favorite directors. I wish his Musketeer films (including the somewhat forgotten sequel) would be restored & re-released. Again. Thanks.

    Released. Why restored?

  8. I had the Richard Lester Three/Four Musketeers on Blu-ray, but found the picture quality quite disappointing (hardly better than the DVDs). I'd replace the word restored with the words, done properly, maybe even go back to the OCN. It may…or may not happen.

  9. atcolomb

    Nice to see two of my favorite actors Sean Connery & Robert Shaw in the same film…and not forgetting the beautiful Audrey Hepburn.

    Hope you've seen From Russia With Love. Your two favs were together in that one as well.

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