Here's a conservative's review of Ridley Scott's new movie, Robin Hood. Klavan thinks Scott did a poor job of making the movie, but the conservative (that's right, conservative!) message is right on the mark. Klavan reminds us that Robin Hood is a conservative who is motivated to steal because of oppressive taxation. Sound familiar? Liberal critics pan the movie because they don't like the message. Reason enough for me to watch it, even if it's poorly made.
Robin Hood Anxiety Syndrome
by Andrew Klavan
Robin Hood Anxiety Syndrome: A state of agitation occurring in left-wingers when a work of popular culture threatens to awaken them from the dream of their own superior virtue and expose them as the fools and aspiring tyrants they are. See also Dark Knight Anxiety Syndrome.
The left dodged a cultural arrow this weekend. If Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood had been a good or even semi-good movie, it would have delivered a much-deserved slap in the face to them and everything they stand for. Unfortunately, while Scott got the spirit of the legend right, he told his story badly.
It was the comedian Steven Crowder who first pointed out to me that Robin Hood is a conservative. Before he mentioned it, I had—as reviewer A.O. Scott of the New York Times apparently still does—lazily thought of Robin as one who “robs from the rich to give to the poor.” Which would make him a socialist. And a thieving thug. But I repeat myself.
As Steven pointed out to me, however, what plagues England in the Robin Hood story is never poverty per se, but taxation. Invasive government taxation and hunting regulations have reduced the English peasants to penury. The King, the Sheriff and other government toadies are the people’s enemies. And Robin Hood, far from trying to redistribute wealth, is merely attempting to get the people’s money back from these bloated tax-and-spenders.