Gordon Douglas’ Robin And The 7 Hoods
When it comes to the cinema of yesteryear, there can be no denying the power of the unofficial actors’ club comprising of the likes of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby and Sammy Davis Jr. Of course, it then comes as no surprise that when four heavyweight names like these come together, the end project is bound to be an experience that will not soon be forgotten. This can certainly be said of the 1964 film, Robin and the 7 Hoods. Directed by Douglas Gordon, this film was also, coincidently produced by the legendary Frank Sinatra himself.
Essentially, what Robin and the 7 Hoods is, is a modern day retelling of the classic tale of Robin Hood who steals from the rich and gives to the poor. However, this film has an interesting twist to it – it is set in 1930, Chicago’s famed era of gangsterism and gambling.
The story of Robin and the 7 Hoods picks up when Big Jim, the infamous boss of Chicago’s underworld, is killed off. Guy Gisborne, partnering with a corrupt sheriff, is responsible for his death. At this stage, he wants to rule the roost and almost everyone falls behind him, except for Robbo. Robbo is played by Frank Sinatra and is the Robin-Hood-like character. With a desire to keep his territory untouched by Guy and his cronies, Robbo befriends the director of an orphanage. When he donates money to this orphanage, he quickly becomes known as something of a hero.
Of course, Guy wants to get rid of Robbo as soon as possible, and it quickly becomes a game of fast wit and action as the two battle to try and establish themselves as kings of Chicago’s underworld.
When you have a cast of big names like Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr and Bing Crosby, there are bound to be more than a few songs scattered throughout the movie. Interestingly enough, many of the songs from Robin and the 7 Hoods enjoyed success outside of the film. One of them, titled “My Kind of Town” was even nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song.
Amongst some of the other songs featured in this film include the likes of “Any Man Who Loves His Mother”, “Style”, “Bang! Bang!”, “Don’t Be a Do-Badder” and “Mr Booze.” Every song featured on this movie’s soundtrack is one that has been able to stand alone, removed from the film, and still garner its own success. Furthermore, the songs were all performed by some of the most iconic singers of all time, so the ears of those who watch this movie are certainly in for a treat.
At the end of the day, Robin and the 7 Hoods certainly made its mark in celluloid history. With an astounding cast of renowned performers, as well as a gripping storyline and a truly memorable soundtrack, this film certainly has all the makings of an entertaining way to spend 124 minutes.