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Sub-par swordplay

nlnews@archant.co.uk
26 October 2005
Antonio Banderas dons the mask again in the disappointing Legend of Zorro
Antonio Banderas dons the mask again in the disappointing Legend of Zorro
AFTER the light, fluffy and fun original, there was plenty of expectation for THE LEGEND OF ZORRO (PG) to come up with the goods.

Sadly the film suffers from that Hollywood phenomenon "sequelitis", finding itself forced to wriggle free from the original's "happily ever after" through a series of tired and cliched plot points.

This time around, we lose Anthony Hopkins - the world weary Zorro who trained up the new kid on the block (Antonio Banderas) - and gain Adrian Alonso, as the son of Zorro.

Unfortunately the plucky youngster becomes this film's Scrappy Doo - rather than adding emotion and action, he holds things up and raises the corny factor.

And there is some serious corniness here. While the first film gave a knowing wink to the audience at its cliches, this film crosses the line into clumsy pastiche with low-rent Bond set pieces and a horse straight out of a bad Christmas panto.

Banderas and Catherine Zeta Jones do their best but cannot match the sparkle and charm of the original, and Rufus Sewell looks lost as a French baddie in an awkward WMD-esque plotline.

The Legend of Zorro makes a stab at a lively entertainment but in the end its swordsmanship looks pretty shoddy.

Rating: Two stars (out of five)

- SARAH BARROW

 

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