The Adventures of Robin Hood; Swimming Pool; About a Boy

From the desk of the Movie Snob:

The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938). (B) A newly restored print was recently shown at a local art house theater for a couple of weeks. It’s pretty corny by today’s standards, but a lot of swashbuckling fun nevertheless. The packed theater broke out into applause at the end. Robin and Marian give a couple of speeches about the glories of a united England that are oddly anachronistic but surely reflect the concerns of the film-maker’s day, when the shadow of Nazism was already advancing across the Continent.

Swimming Pool. (B-) Sarah Morton is an older British woman, a writer of popular mystery novels, and a soul badly in need of a holiday to recharge her batteries. Her publisher lends her his French villa for a vacation, and it is as sunny and beautiful as London is cold and rainy. But soon after she arrives at the villa, an unexpected houseguest also moves in – her publisher’s beautiful and troubled teenaged daughter, Julie. Sarah gradually moves past her irritation and into curiosity about Julie’s mysterious past and present, and she switches from the book she had been writing to one about her housemate. Some decent suspense and atmosphere, but overall the movie doesn’t really add up to much.

And off the shelf . . . I’ve picked up a lot of DVDs on sale lately, and this long Labor Day weekend actually sat down and watched a couple. I find that the Hugh Grant flick About a Boy stands up to repeated watching very well, with Hugh turning in a fine performance as a shallow, womanizing, trust-fund baby who slowly opens himself up to the idea of caring about other people through a chance friendship with an odd and friendless 12-year-old boy named Marcus. Well worth your time.

10 comments on “The Adventures of Robin Hood; Swimming Pool; About a Boy

  1. […] is a fellow with a luxuriant beard who is known only as The Pirate Captain (voice of Hugh Grant, About a Boy).  TPC is singularly bad at plundering, and his gentle crew is more excited by ham night than by […]

  2. […] if the movie ignores conventional zombie wisdom that zombies never ever change.  Nicholas Hoult (About a Boy) does a good job as R, and John Malkovich (Burn After Reading) and Analeigh Tipton (Damsels in […]

  3. […] return peace and prosperity to the land.  Mila Kunis (Forgetting Sarah Marshall), Rachel Weisz (About a Boy), and Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn) add some interest as Oz’s three resident […]

  4. […] Polly Walker (TV’s Rome), and even Nicholas Hoult, all grown up from his performance in About a Boy, as one of Perseus’s faithful followers. Go with low expectations, and you’ll be […]

  5. […] lawyer who goes to work for an immature, philandering real-estate magnate played by Hugh Grant (About a Boy). The title comes from the uninteresting fact that she eventually gets sick of it and gives him her […]

  6. […] and Lyrics (C+). This is a perfectly adequate little romantic comedy starring Hugh Grant (About a Boy) and Drew Barrymore (Whip It). Hugh plays a washed up 80′s pop star who supports himself by […]

  7. […] that this movie got good buzz when it came out, but I was surprised to relearn that Rachel Weisz (About a Boy) won the Academy Award for best supporting actress for this film. I found it rather unmemorable. […]

  8. […] retirement even when he sought out for a performance before the Queen of England.  Rachel Weisz (About a Boy) is also on hand as Caine’s unhappy daughter and personal assistant.  Paul Dano (Looper) […]

  9. […] this quiet, understated British drama is one of the best I have seen in a long while.  Rampling (Swimming Pool) plays Kate, a British woman who is only six days away from a big party celebrating the 45th […]

  10. […] I enjoyed director Paul Weitz’s last two efforts — In Good Company and especially About a Boy. (I never saw his earlier masterpiece American Pie.) This movie has some laughs, but the humor […]

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