Sorry, wrong gay blade.
|That's more like it|
Do you remember the legend of El Zorro? Well of course not, most of us were born after the 1950s but he was the native Californian's superman in the 1840s where greedy, unscrupulous landowners had pretty much enslaved the peasants. He fought for truth, justice, and the poor trodden-down pepels in the field so of course the masses were crying out for a movie in the 1980s.
George Hamilton starred as Don Diego de la Vega, a wealthy playboy in Madrid. Caught with his pants almost down with another man's wife, his loyal mute servant Paco (Donovan Scott) pantomimes a letter from Diego's father. Two thoughts here: 1) I want Paco on my charades team every time and 2) Did Scott get a SAG card as he had no actual lines in the movie? Moving on. To California!
|No pants are safe around me|
Repairing to his family villa, Diego finds a note from his father detailing the de la Vega's true destiny: in time of crisis, the Vega men don the mask of El Zorro...and this hat, which needs reblocking. True to form, the import is lost on Diego who thinks it's a snazzy costume to wear to the celebratory masquerade ball but I'll be honest, Hamilton cuts a dashing figure as Zorro, though a bit puffed up with his own importance. As Paco and Diego head to the ball, they come across an old man crying for help; a one-eyed man has taken all of his money! Diego chases the bandit down and returns the coins to the old man, plus interest. Alas, it turns out that the bandit was actually the tax collector who was also on his way to the ball. He fingers Diego as the masked man who robbed him and Esteban immediately challenges Diego to a duel.
|Early form of zumba|
|Never fear, El Zorro is here|
Esteban is being driven completely around the bend by Zorro when he sees a chance to lure his nemesis into the open: a grand ball to show off Florinda's expensive new necklace. Figuring that Zorro could never pass up the chance to swipe the necklace, Esteban surrounds Florinda with quite possibly the most inept quartet of guards ever, discounting Stormtroopers of course. In my favorite scene of the film, Esteban is talking to the tax collector Velasquez saying that they need to be sharp, it's not like Zorro is going to walk in announcing 'Here I am!'...which Diego precisely does, elating and disappointing Esteban that it wasn't harder to catch him. But...in comes another guest also dressed as Zorro! What the blazes is going on here?! A mysterious servant delivered instructions to all the guests to come dressed as Zorro! And mayhem ensues.
But the Alcalde is right; Zorro is planning to steal the necklace but how will he pull it off? Why, having his twin brother dress in drag and present as his cousin Margarita Wigglesworth from Santa Barbara.
|Perhaps 12 times a night once a year isn't the best idea...|
Yes, the story is ridiculous and silly but such tremendous fun. George Hamilton was nominated for a Golden Globe for his dual role and the physical comedy is top notch. Ron Liebman and Brenda Vaccaro chow down on the scenery something fierce. None of the lead actors are Hispanic and given today's sensibilities teeters dangerously close to a stereotypical parody of Hispanic accents. It's eminently quotable for what better way to announce your presence than with Don Diego's 'Here I Ammmm!'
Zorro: he stands against tyranny, he stands for justice and he stands...in your bedroom. Go watch it. You can thank me later.
|I am intelligent. Intuitive. And not in Barcelona.|