The beloved tale of Robin Hood is given a fine treatment by the people at Disney. Or should I say was given a fine treatment. This animated film has been a favourite of young and old alike for a couple of generations. Originally released in 1973 the film has entertained many a child for 33 years now. It is by no means Disney's best film, but even their weaker films are better than most. The animals playing human roles really tickled most viewers fancy and the film was appreciated mostly because of this. Director Wolfgang Reitherman (The Rescuers, The Aristocats) has shown he possesses a deft touch in making animated films full of furry creatures. There is also great voice work done by the likes of Roger Miller and Peter Ustinov. The film garnered an Oscar nomination for Best Song ("Love") in 1974. I love the hand-drawn animation from these older films. Somehow the characters and colours seem somehow warmer to me. With each subsequent release of these older classic animated films the improvements in sound and picture quality become more and more noticeable. This is becoming more and more important because of the technological advancements in televisions and sound systems.
The story of Robin Hood (Brian Bedford – Nixon) and his merry men comes to the screen in this animated version. The Prince of Nottingham (Peter Ustinov – Evil Under the Sun, Death on the Nile) is taxing his subjects so much it is impossible for them to pay. Robin Hood and his sidekick, Little John (Phil Harris – The Jungle Book, Rock-A-Doodle), embark on one adventure after another in their attempts to stop Prince John and his sneaky pal, Sir Hiss (Terry-Thomas – It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World, The Hound of the Baskervilles). The ultimate goal is to defeat Prince John and restore the good King Richard (Peter Ustinov) to the throne. Robin is also competing against Prince John to win the hand of the fair maiden, Maid Marian (Monica Evans – The Odd Couple). There is never a peaceful moment in Sherwood Forest…or so it seems.
-New deleted scene featuring an alternate ending
-Archery trivia challenge
-Rescue Maid Marian
-Disney song selections: "Oo-De-Lally", "Love", "The Phony King of England"
-Robin Hood art gallery
-Bonus short: "Ye Olden Days" starring Mickey Mouse