The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Legend of Zorro (2005)

Who remembers the original Zorro television series, starring Guy Williams, back in the late 50's and early 60's?  That Zorro was impossibly athletic, the greatest swordsman in the world, and never killed anyone.  A kid-friendly guardian of liberty, fondly recalled.  Well, "Legend" is that kind of movie, dropping from a PG-13 to a PG in one swoop, and reading reviews on "Rotton Tomatoes" one would think this a sin.  Well, I guess I can understand.  Seven years after "Mask of Zorro" Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Zones (both luscious and lithe and excellent) have returned as Mr. and Mrs. De La Vega, the Latino Batman and Robina of 1850 California.  Time has passed since that film, and they have a son who has no idea that his father is a superhero.  Mrs. De La Vega, angry that her husband won't hang up his mask, sues for divorce...and considering that everyone is Catholic, apparantly gets it in record time.  Of course, nothing is what it seems, and all are caught up iin the kind of plot that wil make "The Wild, Wild West" fans feel right at home.  Here's the truth: I enjoyed it, easily slipping into my 12-year-old-boy space and digging the swordfights, the stunts, the incredible Ms. Zeta-Jones (who is a butt-whipper of the first order.  Who knew?) and even the kid, who apparently does at least SOME of his own impressive stuntwork.  And ultimately, I thought of Guy Williams, and watching "The Adventures of Zorro" with my mom, and felt all warm and fuzzy inside.  Yeah, I would have enjoyed a more adult movie, but kids need fun too.  Heck with it--I'm giving the movie a "B."

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