The Mark of Zorro

Catch the film that was the first to put “swash” and “buckling” together — The Mark of Zorro! This is the 1920 silent-film version of the classic Latin-lover/undercover-hero-to-the-poor/audacious-enemy-to-the-rich action story. Back then, the character was still a newcomer — he was based on a 1919 story by Johnston McCulley, “The Curse of Capistrano.” Douglas Fairbanks, the star of Zorro, played him with equal parts daring, humor and captivating charm. Actually, we should say Fairbanks played “them,” acting as both the rambunctious Zorro and his mild-mannered alter ego, Don Diego.

With bad guys around every corner, Zorro has his hands full. On top of that, his sweetheart, Lolita, loves Zorro but dislikes Don Diego, so you can see why the poor guy had to wear a mask. There are plenty of plot twists and sword fighting (remember all that “swash” and “buckling?”), and, of course, a big juicy kiss or two. Today’s screening will have live accompaniment from Rick Benjamin and his Paragon Ragtime Orchestra, which will perform the Mexican-tinged original score. 7:30 p.m. Miller Outdoor Theatre, 100 Concert Drive in Hermann Park. For information, call 281-FREE-FUN or visit Free.
Sat., Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m., 2007


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