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|Errol Flynn||Robin Hood|
|Olivia de Havilland||Maid Marian|
|Basil Rathbone||Sir Guy of Gisbourne|
|Claude Rains||Prince John|
|Patric Knowles||Will Scarlett|
|Eugene Pallette||Friar Tuck|
|Alan Hale, Sr.||Little John|
|Melville Cooper||High Sheriff of Nottingham|
|Ian Hunter||King Richard the Lion-Heart|
|Montagu Love||Bishop of the Black Canons|
|Leonard Willey||Sir Essex|
|Robert Noble||Sir Ralf|
"Only the rainbow can duplicate its brilliance."
"Only the rainbow can duplicate its brilliance!"
When Richard the Lionheart (Ian Hunter), the King of England, is taken captive by Leopold of Austria while returning from the Crusades, his brother John (Claude Rains) takes power and proceeds to oppress the Saxon commoners. Prince John raises their taxes, supposedly to raise Richard's ransom, but in reality to secure his own position on the throne.
One man stands in his way, the Saxon Robin, Earl of Locksley (Errol Flynn). Robin acquires a loyal follower when he saves Much (Herbert Mundin) from being arrested by Sir Guy of Gisbourne (Basil Rathbone) for poaching one of the king's deer. Robin goes alone to see Prince John at Gisbourne's castle and announces to John's assembled supporters and a contemptuous Maid Marian (Olivia DeHavilland) that he will do all in his power to oppose John and restore Richard to his rightful place. He then escapes, in spite of the efforts of John's men.
His lands and title now forfeit, Robin takes refuge in Sherwood Forest with his friend Will Scarlet (Patric Knowles). There they meet Little John (Alan Hale, Sr.), whom Robin recruits after a bruising quarterstaff bout. Other men join their growing band. Later, Robin provokes Friar Tuck (Eugene Pallette) into a swordfight, but then persuades the friar into joining him to provide spiritual guidance to the outlaws. Soon, Prince John and his Norman and Angevin cronies find themselves harassed beyond all bearing with many of their troops receiving instant deadly retribution for their abuses courtesy of the Merry Men's arrows.
One day, Robin and his men capture a large party of Normans transporting taxes through Sherwood. Among Robin's "guests" are Gisbourne, the cowardly Sheriff of Nottingham (Melville Cooper), and Maid Marian. Robin and his men "liberate" the tax money, swearing to a man to contribute it towards King Richard's ransom. At first, Marian is disdainful of Robin and his "band of cut-throats", but becomes convinced of his good intentions and begins to see the reality of things. Eventually Robin lets the humiliated Gisbourne and sheriff go, telling them that they have Marian to thank for their lives.
The Sheriff then comes up with a cunning scheme to capture Robin. He suggests to Prince John that he announce an archery tournament, with the grand prize a golden arrow to be presented by Maid Marian, knowing that Robin will be unable to resist the challenge. All goes as planned; Robin identifies himself by winning the competition and is taken prisoner. Gisbourne sentences him to be hanged. However, Marian warns Robin's men, and they manage to rescue him on his way to the gallows. Later, in the dark of night, Robin sneaks into the castle to thank her. Marian and Robin declare their love for each other.
Meanwhile, King Richard returns to England disguised as a monk, but is recognized at an inn by the Bishop of the Black Canons (Montague Love) after he overhears one of Richard's men call him "sire". The traitorous bishop hurries to inform Prince John. Upon receiving the news, John and Gisbourne plot to dispose of Richard quietly before he can raise an army. Dickon Malbete (Harry Cording), a disgraced former knight, is sent to assassinate him in return for the restoration of his rank and Robin's estate. Marian overhears them and writes a note warning Robin, but Gisbourne finds it and has her arrested and condemned to death for treason. Marian's nurse Bess (Una O'Connor) informs her boyfriend Much, who intercepts and kills Dickon after a desperate struggle.
Richard and his escort travel to Sherwood Forest to find Robin. When Richard is certain of Robin's loyalty, he reveals his identity. Then they learn from Much that John intends to have himself crowned king by the Bishop of the Black Canons in Nottingham the next day.
Knowing that the castle is too strong to take by force, Robin decides to use guile, visiting the bishop and "persuading" him to include Robin and his men, in disguise, in his entourage. Through this ruse, they gain entry to the castle and interrupt John's coronation. A melee breaks out, during which Robin and Gisbourne engage in a prolonged swordfight. Gisbourne is finally slain, and Robin rescues Marian from her cell.
Richard is restored to the throne; he exiles his brother, pardons the outlaws, returns Robin's earldom and 'orders' him to marry Maid Marian. Robin exclaims, "May I obey all your commands with equal pleasure, sire!"
DVD : 2003-09-30