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Cannes: Why can't 'Robin Hood' catch a break?

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robin-hood-cannesImage Credit: http://insidemovies.ew.com/files/2010/05/robin-hood-cannes_510.jpgLast year’s opening night Cannes movie, Up, ended up scoring a Best Picture nomination. But the Oscar gods haven’t been smiling on Robin Hood. Most of the prerelease reviews have been negative (including one from my EW colleague Owen Gleiberman, who calls the film a “dense, dark forest of high-minded murk”), director Ridley Scott’s recent knee surgery kept him from attending the festival, and wouldn’t you know it, the minute the movie’s post-party began last night here in France, it started to rain.

The film’s star, Russell Crowe, was still a trooper: He was the first cast member to arrive at the party, and when I left at 2 a.m., he was still there, alternating between whooping it up with his fellow “merry men” Scott Grimes and Kevin Durand and engaging in serious conversation with festival jury member Benicio Del Toro, who won his Best Supporting Actor Oscar for Traffic the same year Crowe picked his up for Gladiator. We shouldn’t expect a repeat of Gladiator‘s Best Picture and Best Actor wins, however. Some of my Oscar-blogging pals I bumped into at the party wondered if Robin Hood might have a shot at nods in the costume design and cinematography races. My feeling is that its best shots will be in the sound races, with all that nifty whooshing whenever someone shoots an arrow across the forest. But if the film is as much of a box-office flop as some people are predicting it to be, then all bets are off.