I am a big fan of what I like to call adventure movies. You know the kind with fun characters thrown into exciting situations who perform thrilling feats of derring-do with lots of action (but not an "action" movie filled with guns and explosions and gratuitous swearing)? My favorites of the adventure genre include the Indiana Jones trilogy, "The Adventures of Robin Hood," "The Goonies," and more recently "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl."
The 1998 predecessor to this film, "The Mask of Zorro," was a fine example of a great adventure movie. This film is not. all this will be invisible until you click on the title Whereas the swordfights in "Mask" were thrilling, here they are hackneyed. The humor sprinkled throughout the first film was charming, but in the sequel, it is overused and childish. Replace the intriguing backstory and chilling villain of the first film with a confusing and out-of-nowhere conspiracy and bad guys who combine elements of the worst Bond and Looney Tunes nemeses. In addition, substitute Sir Anthony Hopkins with an annoying kid and change the the engaging lead characters into caricatures and one has "The Legend of Zorro."
I am surprised that the same director (Martin Campbell) helmed both films they are so disparate in quality. Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones once again shine as Zorro (or Don Alejandro de la Vega) and Elena. Both appear to be a having a lot of fun despite the writers ruining their characters. The ending contained some horrible CGI and shoddy green screen work. Also, much of what happened throughout the film, but particularly near the end, seemed to happen for no other reason than the script said so. At least the exciting Spanish score (which will always take me back to my high school marching band's half-time show from sophomore year. Yes, I was a band geek) remained.
Oh boy do I love ya'lls movie reviews on this blog. Sir Medley you are such a natural fit for this sort of thing (I HAVE seen your dvd collection! woah buddy! ;-)) As far as this movie goes... haven't seen it yet and was wondering if it would even be worth the money. Perhaps I will just wait until it comes to our dollar theater. Thanks for the review!