Friday, 29 May 2015

Film Friday: The Mark of Zorro (1940)

Next up, 1940's The Mark of Zorro.

I own this, yes, but I am somewhat neutral on the whole affair. I neither love it, nor loathe it, it is simply, "Meh." Tyrone Power: meh. I must stress that there isn't actually anything wrong with this film, it's just me(h). Basil Rathbone however was of great interest to me.

A young aristocrat must masquerade as a fop in order to maintain his secret identity of Zorro as he restores justice to early California.


The Mark of Zorro is a 1940 adventure film directed by Rouben Mamoulian and produced by Darryl F. Zanuck for 20th Century Fox. It stars Tyrone Power as Don Diego Vega (Zorro), Linda Darnell as his love interest, and Basil Rathbone as the villain.

The film was Nominated for Academy Award for the Best original score in the 1941 Academy Awards. In 2009, it was named to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for being "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant and will be preserved for all time.

Basil Rathbone, being a well known fencer in his own right, was asked how well Tyrone Power did in their scenes in which stunt doubles were not used. Rathbone responded, " Tyrone Power could fence Errol Flynn into a cocked hat!"

Did you know that during filming, Tyrone Power was in the habit of taking an early morning swim in a pool that he insisted on being carefully pre-heated. Darryl F. Zanuck played a prank on him by arranging for the heating to be turned off. Power dived in and got such a shock that he later claimed he nearly had a heart attack.


  1. That was a mean trick with the pool!!!! It did sound like he was being a bit of a diva!!

    I've only seen the modern remake of this.

    How are you anyway? I hope you are well. X

  2. I've never seen Zorro but I've always found the character to be incredibly sexy.

  3. It was so far back, I can scarcely recall the particulars, but this is actually, interestingly (to me at least :)), one of the first vintage movies I remember seeing as a very young child (think pre-age 5). I loved it then and still do today. You just can't beat Mr. Power's' captivating portrayal as Zorro in my books.

    ♥ Jessica

  4. Zanuck sounds like he was a git to a lot of stars (he used to refer disparagingly to Marilyn Monroe as 'strawhead'), so the pool anecdote isn't much of a surprise.

    This looks like a film I'd probably enjoy.


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