Saturday, 29 January 2011

Capital Celluloid - Day 30: Sunday Jan 30, 2011

Robin and Marian: BFI Southbank, 6.20pm NFT2

Director Richard Lester (think Help; A Hard Day's Night) is generally regarded to have lost his way in later years but there are genuine nuggets to be found in a fitful career. The undoubted highlight is Petulia, which is on at the BFI in March as part of a Nic Roeg (cinematographer on that movie) season. Juggernaut (1974) is another ripe for rediscovery as is tonight's offering.

Lester had made his Musketeers romps immediately prior to this but Robin and Marian (Sean Connery and Audrey Hepburn in superb form) is much more thoughtful and elegiac than the gag-filled Dumas adaptations. Critic Tony Rayns is positively rapturous in his review for the Time Out film guide. I haven't seen this for a couple of decades but remember the closing shot and a truly gripping fight to the death involving Connery and the much lamented Robert Shaw as the Sheriff of Nottingham. Here is the trailer.

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