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45 of 52 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A true family movie, fillied with heroic fighting action and genuine comedy
This movie gets high marks from me in the "PG" category. It can not truly be compared to 1998's Mask of Zorro, even though the characters are reprising their roles, because the original was a significantly darker "PG-13." Don't go with expectations that it will match the original.

When we revisit Don Alejandro de la Vega (aka Zorro, played by Antonio...
Published on January 17, 2006 by Jessica Lux

versus
26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars As "sequels" go, this is a success
I have no faith in sequels. All I have to do is think about "The Lost World", "Back to the Future 2", and "The Temple of Doom" to reassure me that I can spend my time and money more wisely. However, when the special edition of the original movie comes packed with a FREE ticket... can you really go wrong?

The ''Legend of Zorro'' retains a lot of the energy,...
Published on October 30, 2005 by William Smith


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45 of 52 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A true family movie, fillied with heroic fighting action and genuine comedy, January 17, 2006
By 
This movie gets high marks from me in the "PG" category. It can not truly be compared to 1998's Mask of Zorro, even though the characters are reprising their roles, because the original was a significantly darker "PG-13." Don't go with expectations that it will match the original.

When we revisit Don Alejandro de la Vega (aka Zorro, played by Antonio Banderas) and his charming wife Elena (played by Catherine Zeta-Jones), ten years have passed since the original movie, and their son is a major player in their lives (he is masterfully and comically played by the young Adrian Alonso). As married life as gone on, Elena has continually urged Alejandro to give up his secret life as Zorro, but he keeps feeling the tug of his people. The two quarrel and separate, leading to separate lives amongst some major political upheaval and the arrival of a strange Frenchman who seems to have his own plans for the homeland. There are a few stretches in the plot, but nothing too outrageous for an action/comedy, and there is plenty of witty banter and sight gags to make up for it. (Of course, any history buff will find the plot laughable, but it's for entertainment, okay?) Elena gets to do some excellent fighting and espionage-types scenes in this plot, really coming in to her own.

As my review title states, this is a family movie. The darkest moments are Alejandro's sad drunken sloven days. Again and again, the values of family, fighting fair, not shooting anyone in the back, doing well in school, etc. are reinforced, but not in a preachy way. The young son of Zorro is quite a troublemaker in school, and he learns a lot about "doing the right thing" throughout the movie, much to the comic delight of the audience. See this with a younger audience and know that you are getting some good action/adventure, packed with comedy and romance, without anything vulgar. If you like darker entertainment, avoid this sequel.
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26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars As "sequels" go, this is a success, October 30, 2005
By 
William Smith (Fontana, CA United States) - See all my reviews
I have no faith in sequels. All I have to do is think about "The Lost World", "Back to the Future 2", and "The Temple of Doom" to reassure me that I can spend my time and money more wisely. However, when the special edition of the original movie comes packed with a FREE ticket... can you really go wrong?

The ''Legend of Zorro'' retains a lot of the energy, humor, and style from the first movie and that is more than enough to actually carry the film. I was worried going in to this that without Anthony Hopkins, the movie wouldn't have an anchor. I'm glad to report that Hopkins, while he is missed, is not an essential part of this new Zorro Universe and that is key.

The villians and story are "just good enough" to make sure this boat stays afloat while Banderas and Zeta-Jones do all the rowing. I'm sorry, but if you give this movie 1 star and are so bitter about it, you really must have a heavy heart... it's a fun-popcorn-movie!!

I did have my share of misgivings I hope can be righted in the next film.

Firstly, the balance of the cast is so good at general hand to hand combat [ie; children, women, peasants] that it does seem to undercut the heroic acts of Zorro. While viewing this one starts to get the idea that if ANY of the people in this film were wearing the mask, they too could be Zorro!!

Secondly, while I had a great time with the action scenes featuring Zorro, there were actually too few of them and again, the ones that were here were laced with other people kicking-butt.

Lastly, the writers seemed to try a bit too hard with the family dynamic. While on the one hand I can see them broadening the characters but on the other, it came off stiff and sometimes hollow.

Still, I cannot say this was a dissappointment. Zorro is a fantastic character and the Banderas-Jones one/two punch hopefully can live on through at least a few more movies... that is as long as they retain the direction of Martin Campbell and the reworked scores of James Horner.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Legend Continues, February 2, 2006
By 
Rosa "Bookworm" (Detroit,MichiganUSA) - See all my reviews
While it's not better than original. I found it to be a great sequel. What I enjoyed most that it wasn't predictable. It has a lot of suspense as well as drama. The movie starts with Elena and Alejandro divorcing as well his troubled relationship with his son Joaquin. Will it work out! Buy the DVD. Also the Special Features are great as well especially the behind the scenes footage.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth Viewing, but not as good as the first with Antonio, January 31, 2006
I am of the belief that any movie starring Antonio Banderas with a sword is proabbly going to be better than most movies that don't star Antonio Banderas with a sword (or a guitar case full of guns for that matter). It is with this notion in mind that "The Legend of Zorro" is a fun film. The action is very well choreographed and very enjoyable. Zorro's stunts are breathtaking and far superior to the stunts and swordplay in the very enjoyable "Mask of Zorro" film. I would even go so far as to say that the majority of the plot in "Legend of Zorro" is also superior to the storyline that takes place in Antonio's first turn as the masked, Zorro.

The sole reason for this film's 3 star rating is Catherine Zeta-Jones. Actually, that isn't even her fault. Catherine's character, Elena, is absolutely repulsive in this movie. She is whiney, she is rude, she is darn-near unbelievably difficult to tolerate. For lack of a better word, she is absolutely a gigantic b****. In spite of Elena's best attempts to make this movie no fun at all, Antonio's performance as Zorro and as a father are way fun and very enjoyable.

Buy this movie only if you are a total completist (as I am) and feel the need to own it simply because you own the first. Otherwise, this movie is probably not worth much more than a one-night rental, and it's honestly all Elena's fault.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One last ride..., January 8, 2006
By 
Woopak "The THRILL" (Where Dark Asian Knights Dwell) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
I saw this film in Imax the weekend it first came out, and I have to say, it is as every bit as entertaining as the first film: THE MASK OF ZORRO. I do believe everyone from the original, including the director, came back for this second installment. Thankfully.

The film has all the elements of the previous Zorro film which made it successful, swashbuckling action, humor, romance and family. The only thing lacking is the tragedies that was in MASK OF ZORRO.

This time around, Alejandro dela Vega and Elena are having marital problems. Elena wishes that her husband retire from his swashbuckling ways and give more time to their son, Joaquin. As usual, forces beyond their control leave Alejandro no choice but to continue as the masked one. Even Elena fell into the trap of fate when she is forced to go undercover for the (SPOILER ALERT)u.s. secret service to investigate a french nobleman who has been wooed by her beaty in the past. She is forced to divorce Alejandro to protect him.

The people of California is also holding elections to become a state of the United States which a cult plans on stopping. The movie is like a period James Bond flick/family film. Young Joaquin has no idea that his father is in fact Zorro which is why he had grown more and more distant towards his sire.

The action is terrific! The sword fights are amazing and well-choreographed, and the script itself is not flawless but quite fitting to the movie. The train scene is the highlight of the film and builds up to its climax. I give this 3 1/2 stars or a weak 4 stars because I think the original movie is a strong 4 stars. In THE MASK OF ZORRO, the stakes were more personal.

To sum things up, it is a very enjoyable movie that's worth a second look. It is very entertaining, I only wish it came out sooner as a follow up sequel. I think this is the only reason it didn't do as good as the MASK OF ZORRO in the box-office. The first one was a box-office smash, I believed it came up short because it was too late. There are only a few franchises that can go over 4 years for a follow up sequel and still be a blockbuster: naming a feW FRANCHISES: ALIEN, TERMINATOR, and they're all sci-fi flicks.

All in all, THE LEGEND OF ZORRO is solid entertainment. I'm adding this one to my huge collection.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dante's Favorite KIDS Movie Pick for 2006!, January 14, 2006
A Kid's Review
I want to encourage all kid's who love action packed adventure to see both the Mask of Zorro and The Legend of Zorro. Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones are incredible in both and the boy that plays the part of Joaquin their son in The Legend of Zorro, definitely holds his own!

I was born deaf so I normally use the captions whenever I view movies at home. But when I saw this movie at the theatre, the movie had so much to offer in every form of communication that I was able to know exactly what was happening all the time.

I first watched the Mask of Zorro with my Grandma when I was 8 years old. She wanted me to see it because it is one of her favorite movies. That day, it became my favorite movie too! Some parents might think that the movie is more for grown-ups because it doesn't seem like a "kid's movie", but just because it's not animated or a Disney film... it is every bit as much for kids ages 8 and up as any other superhero movie.

When I heard that another Zorro movie was coming, I was so excited! My mom, Grandma and me went to see it together and we all were entertained throughout the entire movie. I didn't think the Legend of Zorro would be quite as good as the Mask of Zorro, and I was right...it wasn't. IT WAS BETTER! Both movies are clean, funny, fast paced, action packed and adventurous! They will take you into a time and place that is amazing and you will be on the edge of your seat routing, cheering, laughing and gasping throughout the entire film!

So, if you like Spiderman, Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers or any of the superhero movies, get ready to add to the top of your collection of favorites because "The Legend of ZORRO" is sure to be one that you will want to watch over and over, just like me. I know, cause I'm a kid just like you!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oh, what might have been ..., April 13, 2006
By 
D. VELLKY (Pittsburgh, PA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Over the years, Hollywood has taught us not to have much faith in sequels. Legend of Zorro is no exception to that formula. While not horrible (if you're interested enough in the franchise, its certainly worth seeing once), Legend lacked all the charm, sharp wit, exhilarating action sequences, and tight plot that made Mask of Zorro so popular.

The story opens ten years following the events of Mask of Zorro. Impoverished California is holding the vote for statehood. Naturally, there must be a loose cannon out there somewhere who is willing to go to extremes to stop the ballots from reaching the governor. The resident psycho shows up in the form of Jacob McGivens, convincingly portrayed by Nick Chinlund. So, it's Zorro to the rescue. We get the idea this was supposed to be his last gig, but now he's not so sure, and Elena's upset. Alejandro/Zorro doesn't spend enough time with their young son Joaquin. He's taking risks that aren't necessary any longer as statehood is imminent ... because apparently statehood is the solution to everything. So, we're faced with a messy situation, a divorce, Alejandro's drunken binge, and Elena's courtship with smooth talking Frenchman Armand who - surprise, surprise - turns out to be the big bad of the flick. All in all, I whole heartedly agree with the Amazon.com review that states there is just too much plot here. I gave the very brief, bullet point's version. Toss in all the subplots, twists and turns, and ridiculous scenes such as Joaquin's ruler duel with his teacher, and you've got a hodgepodge of plot that never knows which direction to go.

The acting is admirable, considering what the cast had to work with. They were likely just as confused by the direction of the movie as the average viewer. Still, Antonio Banderas shines in a part absolutely tailored to fit him, Catherine Zeta-Jones is always a treat, and Rufus Sewell has proven time and again he suits the cool, collected, debonair villainous role just fine.

Still despite the talent, the actors just couldn't save this script. Nothing ever seemed to click for this movie. Nothing sparked. Nothing moved me to really sit up and pay attention. What made Mask of Zorro great has vanished, and we're left with a cheap imitation merely trying to capitalize on the popularity of the prequel. Sorry, but in order to ride the coattails of a previous success, you really can't wait seven years. Perhaps if the sequel had been tackled sooner, something better would've shown up on screen. But I guess we'll never know as this was likely the death of the recently revived Zorro franchise.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tongue in Cheek Adventure Sequel, February 2, 2006
By 
Unlike many of the inevitable sequels that follow popular expensive movies, THE LEGEND OF ZORRO is happily a lot of fun to watch. Though overlong in excess of two hours, and though the story line is pushed beyond tolerable limits, it is easy to forgive the many weaknesses of the film and just enjoy the verbal and physical jousting between Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The story this time 'round concerns the broken promise Alejandro de la Vega (Banderas) made to his wife Elena (Zeta-Jones) at their marriage ten years ago: Alejandro would give up his dangerous life as the masked Zorro. But the upcoming opportunity of statehood for California is at stake and so, of course, the five bells ring and Zorro is on his faithful steed Tornado to right the wrongs. Elena informs him that if he goes on another mission, he may as well not come home, despite the fact that they now have a son Joaquin (Adrian Alonso). But Zorro rides and gradually we discover the covert underpinnings of the cause to which Zorro is called. There is a newcomer in town, one Frenchman Armand (Rufus Sewell) who is mysteriously tied to the worst of all possible deeds with the aid of the smarmy Jacob McGivens (Nick Chinlund).... Elena, no slouch of a wimpy wife, joins in the action in a wily way, and ultimately with the help of good priests Brother Ignacio (Alberto Reyes) and especially Frey Felipe (Julio Oscar Mechoso) good triumphs over evil (surprise!).

There are some well staged duels and fighting episodes and some tender moments about family, especially father/son repartee, but the ingredient that makes these Zorro films work is the fact that Banderas and Zeta-Jones look like their have such a good time. There are many hilarious lines in the most unexpected places. No, this is not a great movie, and despite the fact that yet another sequel is probably planned, enough is enough. But it is entertaining in its lighthearted way. Grady Harp, February 06
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Family fun.., November 5, 2005
There are some movies that are made just for fun. Technically, The Legend of Zorro is just like any other action packed movie. Lots of explosion, ridiculously well choreographed fighting sequence, and a stupendous "save the world" plot. There was nothing truly spectacular in the movie that makes it a cut above the rest. But, nonetheless, it is not a waste of money. The family plot was well intertwined with the history lesson. And family values along with Spanish Christian tradition were well touched as well. Funny, fast paced, and not a single boring moment.

But like every fun movie, once you focus on the details, it loses its touch. Zorro became almost super human, capable of moves like Spiderman, unlike the orginal Zorro which was merely a good fighter. In the movie, he can do any acrobatic trick and summersault with pinpoint accuracy. He seemed to study Ninjutsu, Jujutsu, Kickboxing, and somewhat a sword weilding counterpart of Batman. Add the entire family to that, which, I had to ask, were his son and wife trained to be acrobats? And like the first movie, the final battle between the ultimate antagonist and Zorro takes forever. Suddenly, the antagonist becomes a match to Zorro, and has the stamina and skill to match a hero who can dodge bullets and fight 10 men at a time. Then of course there's the good old padre, who seemed to have a crash course with western boxing.

So when watching Zorro, keep in mind, its a fun movie. Just sit back, enjoy the action, and ignore the details. Otherwise, you'll be frustrated with the film.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Could Have but did not Renew the Zorro Franchise, April 7, 2006
By 
CyberAnth "CyberAnth" (Northern Mariana Islands) - See all my reviews
Zorro is a franchise with utterly tremendous potential, especially as the U.S. increasingly Hispanisizes. While this movie has some elements to commend it, it does not come close to meeting the potential of the franchize. Without doubt, the core problem was the scriptwriting of this particular film.

The writer has yet to overcome the idealism that marked earlier Zorro films. Here we see Zorro as quite superhuman in action-abilities, while the writer at the same time tries to humanize him through is family troubles and his zeal for the poor and opressed. This contradiction is seriously discordant with the rest of the film.

The idealism driving this film can be seen in even its villian--his name is not memorable. He was nothing short of cheesy, as was Zorro's son. Each "cheesy" element must be dealt a categorical death-blow in future Zorro films.

Many of props were good, such as those that attempted to portray Zorro as within the aristocratic class, e.g., Zorro's home was indeed realistic of aristocrats of the very loosely historical seting of the film. However, the props elsewhere seriously lacked realism. The fireworks at the party were so sterotypical Holywood it made me want to turn off my DVD player, go barf in the bathroom, and commence to use my Zorro disk as a frisbee along with my pre-Batman Begins Batman-franchise disks.

It is essential that the Zorro franchise obtain a realist scriptwiter. The Batman franshise has renewed itself for probably decades through such a move. The Zorro franchise has not.

The greatest accomplishment of this particular Zorro film is that it weakly keeps the franshise within the public conscienseness until a truly remarkable and realist Zorro film can be made. While the film is a descently fun evening for un-sophisticated viewers, it's shortcomings are simply pathetic compared to its potential. The Zorro franshise and Holywood is capable of so much more than this.
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The Legend of Zorro [Blu-ray]
The Legend of Zorro [Blu-ray] by Martin Campbell (Blu-ray - 2007)
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