Welcome to a little corner of the site we like to call, Movie Spotlight! This is where we take the time to showcase some films from the past, present and maybe even from the future! Okay, that’s a lie, there aren’t any films from the future here. We do have candy and an assortment of cheese though – so sit back, relax and take a gander. You might discover a film you never knew about for your Netflix or Showmax watchlist!
The story follows Robin, who finds himself in prison in Jerusalem. After some swift assistance from a new friend and a fake beard later, he swims his way back to England to discover his family estate has been confiscated by the evil Prince John and his constantly relocating mole. Robin then goes on a quest to restore his family’s honor and makes some new friends along the way in the form of Little John, Will Scarlett O’Hara and of course Rabbi Tuckman. – See what I mean about the select areas where characters were renamed/altered? Clever Hobbitses outsmart poor Legal Smeagol.
Anyway, along the route of adventure, Robin also meets Marian…as it is, after all a Robin Hood movie, isn’t it? Not to mention Robin has to somehow get past her chastity belt just like in the original legend. This is historical fact, people.
So, what makes this film so great?
Okay, okay. This isn’t exactly an unknown film. Actually, it’s quite legendary. I mean, aside from the fact that it’s Robin Hood, who doesn’t know the tale or this movie? Steal from the rich, give to the poor. Rabbi Tuckman. Marian, Little John and all that. We all know the entire story off by heart, don’t we? Wait…we don’t? What do you mean you never saw this movie? What’s wrong with you? Okay, sit your ass down. You got some reading to do…
Let’s begin with the fact that over the years Hollywood hasn’t skimped on giving us lots of different versions of Robin Hood. Some were better than others and some entirely slipped from memory (Russel Crowe, 2010, Robin Hood). Despite all the alternatives, In my mind there only ever were 3 versions of Robin Hood I could tolerate, these being Disney’s 1973 animated Robin Hood (dem red fox), the 1991 classic starring Kevin Costner, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves…and then there was Mel Brooks and his 1993 version, Robin Hood: Men In Tights.
While this movie isn’t exactly a bastion of originality, it had a charm that far outweighed other films of the time. Even by today’s standards, Robin Hood: Men In Tights is a relevant, modern tale of how white men can’t jump.
Mel Brooks stuck close to the chest on this film and replaced key elements in select areas while still trying to keep true to the core legend. The film itself is an almost direct ripoff of Kevin Costner’s Robin Hood from two years earlier and as a result, Mel Brooks had to change some things just in case anyone had any ideas of suing him. He replaced Robin’s companion Azeem with Ahchoo, replaced Duncan with Blinkin and so on and so forth. The result turned out to be…quite the tall tale.
While Robin Hood: Men In Tights isn’t considered a musical, it contains a series of surprisingly strong musical numbers, one of which even went on to appear on the official soundtrack album sung to some acclaim by Debbie James, named ‘Marian’. The production quality and instrumental value of the album version of this song could very well fool you into thinking you’re listening to a song that has absolutely nothing to do with this film at all. If you care to, you may listen to it by clicking here.
The titular song, ‘Men In Tights’ is surprisingly catchy too and accompanies the overall tone of the film excellently seeing as most of the film, in general, is presented by Sherwood themed rappers named ‘The Merry Men Singers’. I would suppose the end result of all this is that Men In Tights is at least partially considered or was intended as a musical or at very least a theater production but I think it all managed to translate very well to film.
The sheer lightheartedness of the film, the brilliantly thought through comedy and cleverly placed bits of hilarity mixed with superb casting choices make this film a treat for all ages of any era. Robin Hood: Men In Tights might not appeal to everyone but if you’re among those like me who consider it a cult classic will forever value it for what it is.
Robin Hood: Men In Tights is truly memorable, not only for being one of the absolute best Mel Brooks films ever but for showing us just what exactly a ‘spoof’ film should be. It doesn’t take itself seriously at all and contains just the right amount comedy without having to turn vulgar like most spoof films we’ve gotten accustomed to in the modern age.
A true classic. Robin Hood: Men In Tights is that sort of film that will forever hold a special place in the hearts of all movie lovers and if you haven’t seen it yet, do yourself a favor, go see it now!