The Mask of Zorro (1998)

Disappointments don't come much bigger than THE MASK OF ZORRO--
130+ excruciating minutes of moldy cliches, heavy-handed action,
all-too-obvious comedy, and what may be composer James Horner's
most intrusive score of all time.  There's nothing new-- nor, for 
that matter, subtle-- under this sun, but the swordplay is very 
good.  (Great horsey stunts, too!)  As the last kid called when the 
teacher takes roll call, Antonio Banderas at least *looks* the 
part.  (Class, panache, and dramatic weight are other matters en-
tirely...)  Anthony Hopkins is better as his mentor, while Cath-
erine Zeta Jones (THE PHANTOM) effortlessly smolders as the love-
interest-with-a-twist.  (She and B. have a cute-enough chemistry 
together.)  Prune 30 or 40 minutes-- and kill the music-- and you 
might have something here.  (Thank God for the occasionally campy 
moment.  My favorite:  Ms. Jones' magic dress that never once per-
mits cleavage-slippage, even after the shoulder straps are sliced!)  
If nothing else, it's a place to park the (older) kids while you 
laugh your ass off at THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY.  Sigh.  Where 
are the Three Amigos when you need them?  Directed by Martin Camp-
bell (GOLDENEYE) and executive botched, er, by Stephen Spielberg.  
(Rated "PG-13"/136 min.)

Grade: C-

Copyright 1998 Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros

Originally posted to triangle.movies as MOVIE HELL: El Dreadful

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