Using Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Black Arrow for the takeoff, Columbia has made an action-filled cloak-and-dagger romance. The picture is virtually a western of lethal combat, hard riding, intrigue and deep-dyed villainy – all in when-knighthood-was-in-flower terms. Maybe it isn’t exactly art, but it is good entertainment.
The romantic angle has been accented heavily in the translation from Stevenson’s dispassionate narrative. The red-blooded hero returns from the 30 Years War to learn that his uncle has murdered his father to seize the House of York and has had the neighboring Lord of the House of Lancaster executed for the crime. And he understandably tumbles hard for the nifty Lancaster daughter.