To single out one person for the utter travesty that is Robin Hood is unfair. I know that. I’m sorry the privilege has to fall on your shoulders, but when I was looking at my list of plot holes and general asinine moments from Otto Bathurst’s Robin Hood, I narrowed in on an item that you were very heavily involved in. A single source of lighting which probably went unnoticed by the general audience but threw me into an absolute fit of rage. Yes, I’m talking about the cleavage shot.
First of all, that quip about a list is true. The neurons in my brain were firing with such gusto after my screening of Robin Hood, I knew my commentary couldn’t wait until I got home. I just had to jot down all the things wrong with this movie as I scarfed down some chicken tacos in an empty Montana’s BBQ & Bar.
The cleavage shot, as I have so eloquently dubbed it, is just that. As Eve Hewson, who plays Marian, rifles through some parchments in search of a MacGuffin, there is a distinct focus on her chest. The room Marian is in is visibly dim but the giant spotlight beaming down on her cleavage is nothing but a means to objectify the only female character present in Robin Hood.
Seriously, she’s the only one. Aside from a few extras who have no speaking lines, Marian is the only form of female representation in the entirety of Robin Hood.
Your decision to pull all attention to Marian’s breasts sexualizes her character, reducing her to mere eye candy. It makes all the effort put in to writing her to be strong, independent, and outspoken worthless.
I don’t know if this decision was a visionary move from the director or you pushed to “brighten” the room up a bit. Whoever’s call it was, it was a very misguided one.
It gets even more frustrating when you factor in how hard the movie tries to appeal to Millennials and Gen Z by tackling the political tensions of our time, like #MeToo, capitalism, war mongering, Islamophobia—it’s all there. But similar to your handy work, it’s sloppy, flaccid, and forced.
Which begs the question, why? Why did the cleavage scene need to be a thing? What did it add to the overall narrative? In fact, why did this entire movie need to be a thing?
The argument could be made that I’m being too sensitive. That I’m blowing this whole cleavage situation out of proportion. After all, the shot only lasts a few seconds. That’s fair. I could just be brainwashed by ’feminazis’ into hating my own sex. In that case, allow me to present my Montana’s list of all the shit wrong with Robin Hood. Just so I can prove the entire thing is one, giant facepalm.
Spoilers ahead but nobody should see this movie so it doesn’t matter:
Robin Hood has PTSD after viewing the horrors of war, but that doesn’t stop him from using innocent bystanders as human shields against a barrage of arrows.
Jamie Foxx’s Little John stows away on a boat for three months without any access to food or water
Despite being Arabic, Little John has a British accent which seems to turn on and off as the movie progresses.
Robin Hood’s first appearance is a straight copy and paste of the shipyard fight scene in Batman Begins.
Will Scarlet tells Ben Mendelsohn’s Sheriff of Nottingham that he has ambition and is a man of the people despite only voicing his opinion, once.
Will Scarlet turns to the dark side after seeing his love interest, Marian, kissing Robin Hood. Tough loss for a man who did jack shit when his girlfriend got punched in the face by an armed guard and kidnapped earlier on in the film.
Will Scarlet also gets half his face burned a-la Harvey Dent in The Dark Knight (more Batman plagiarism).
Ben Mendelsohn’s Sheriff of Nottingham is the most powerful man in his district but chooses to use a common friar as his personal assistant. That friar also happens to have close ties to Robin Hood. What a coincidence.
The villains love to laugh maniacally only for one of them to scream, “silence” at the top of his lungs and kill the mood. This happened twice.
The villains are also cartoonishly evil. Not on purpose. They’re just awfully written.
The Sheriff orders his men to go into town and steal money and possessions from the people. A dick move which quickly turns into little girls getting shoved into the back of a carriage? Is she a prized possession or did some guard just go way overboard?
Robin Hood is chased up a stairwell on horseback. The shot is cool but it would’ve been way more efficient to just run up the stairs on foot and not maneuver a 1000-pound animal through a tight space.
Robin Hood says he leaves no man behind even though his grand scheme is to lead a rebellion army into battle against the military. Did Robin Hood not think that maybe one or two people might get arrested or killed in the process?
The cleavage shot in Robin Hood is just one of the many exhaustive things wrong with it. It’s a metaphor for the low-brow decision-making that went into Robin Hood’s entire production. I am a huge fan of Taron Egerton but even his charisma and natural charm can’t make up for how bored, annoyed, and frustrated I was.
Much like you chose to shine a light onto Marian, I’m shining a light on what I consider to be one of the worst pictures of 2018.