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I'm a slave to the Hollywood Visionaries.  God help me.

MASK OF ZORRO

Directed by Martin Campbell
Screenplay by John Eskow, Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio
Starring Antonio Banderas, Anthony Hopkins,
Catherine Zeta-Jones, Stuart
Wilson, Matt Letscher
My advice: The sparks from this one could set your couch on fire
Rating out of


This is the movie I fell in love with Antonio Banderas in. Now before you think it's all hormones talking, I think I need to justify my love of this flick in terms a movie-watcher can understand.

What do we look for when we see a film? I'm not sure about you, but speaking
for myself I look for thrills and excitement. I like a superbly written story line with well-developed characters. And, if love is involved, I want to see the kind of electricity than can power a small mountain town. Zorro delivers all of this and then some.

In an effort to even more authenticate my true admiration of this film I shall now go on the record as stating I simply cannot tolerate Catherine Zeta-Jones. Loathe her, yes. Tolerate her, no. In Zorro she is a major player. Now can't you just feel the honesty radiating through your computer screen?

The start of this romantic thriller introduces you to Don Diego de la Vega (Hopkins) who, in the guise of the black masked swordsman known as Zorro, battles victoriously for the oppressed people of then Spanish California. Their very California is trapped in the throws of an attempted "liberation" led by General Santa Anna. All of this because Spanish Governor Don Rafael Montero (Wilson) is looking to take this territory and bequeath it to the richest of the land barons. In a superior opening battle, Zorro is dealt the loss of both his wife and daughter as Montero invades his home and sends him off to a life time in prison. But not before Zorro has earned the unwavering admiration of two small boys.

As we move into the future these two small brothers have grown but, unfortunately, their brush with Zorro's nobility of character did nothing to define their own. They roam the countryside as thieving banditos until one is murdered by American military officer Captain Harrison Love (Letscher).

As Don Rafael returns from Spain with the final plan to buy California back from Santa Anna, Don Diego finally escapes from his prison. Seeking to avenge himself he makes a hasty plan to murder Diego, until he spots his now grown daughter (Zeta-Jones). He then realizes it's time for Zorro to rise up again for the people. A new Zorro. The only problem with this is his new Zorro, Alejandro Murieta (Banderas), is an often drunken lout and a pretty lousy swordsman to boot. So filled with hate for the man who murdered his brother, Alejandro is unwilling to learn Zorro's ways. Looks like Zorro has his work cut out for him.

This movie is A-plus viewing. It has everything you could possibly desire in a film and the humor sprinkled within is liberally dosed. Banderas and Zeta-Jones bring a passion to their pairing that could very well have leveled Verona. If you haven't seen it yet I implore you to do so. It just doesn't get any better than this.......

Z

 

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