"Resolving Conflicting Christian Duties"
What You Need To Know:
THE LEGEND OF ZORRO is filled with exciting action, humor and American patriotism. It has a very strong Christian worldview with very strong moral values. Despite some problems, these positive traits get clearer and clearer as the story goes along. The movie's first half may be a little confusing, however, so MOVIEGUIDE® advises a light caution, especially for younger children.
(CCC, BBB, Ab, FR, PPP, RH, L, VV, N, AA, D, M) Very strong Christian worldview that builds in the second half with a Cross saving a man's life, crucifixes with and without Jesus on them, at least one strong reference to the Holy Trinity, Catholic priest works with Zorro to protect the countryside from evil, priest quotes from the love passage in 1 Cor. 13, very strong moral, Old Testament and New Testament elements include references to God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, hero works with the local religious leader and serves the people to right wrongs, punish the guilty and protect the innocent and the oppressed, pro-family message, man says, "My family is my life," and heroic father is seen training his child in the proper way that he should live, although one major villain talks about serving God all the time and has the scar of a cross burned on his face but his villainy is contrasted by the good local priest and the hero who works with the priest to do good, and some debatable elements such as hero prays during one scene by addressing a large statue of Mary in a Roman Catholic church, though he doesn't say the word Mary and this scene is contrasted by many references to Jesus and one strong reference to the Holy Trinity, as well as very strong pro-American, patriotic message and values about California gaining statehood, including people celebrate that fact by waving American flags and Hispanic hero and heroine say it's good to become part of America because freedom comes with it, and some revisionist history as Southern military man from Alabama wants to start a Civil War in 1850 by aligning the South and California with a secret society of aristocratic European knights (led by a Frenchman, no less) trying to take over California, start a civil war in the United States, and prevent America from threatening the secret society's power base among European nations and leaders, plus a young Abraham Lincoln actually makes an appearance during a ceremony celebrating California's entry into the United States of America; six obscenities (one Spanish SOB in subtitles is rebuked) and three light exclamatory profanities; strong and frequent action violence (not much blood) such as gunfights, chase scenes with horse-drawn carts and a train, much fighting and swordfighting, hero's wife and son take part in some of the fighting and acrobatics, two huge explosions, horse does dangerous jumps, people hit with objects, man shot in back off screen, man shot in chest, fire in barn threatens baby and his mother, knife at man and woman's throat, threats of violence against hero's family, and drop of nitro glycerin falls on man's head and he explodes (explosion shown from afar); no sex scenes but some passionate kissing and hero's wife is blackmailed to get a divorce and be a spy against handsome villain in order to protect her husband and their son; brief upper male nudity and maid sees naked man but nothing is shown, plus some female cleavage; alcohol use and drunkenness; woman pretends she smokes a pipe and horse smokes pipe; and, secret societies rebuked, blackmailing a heroic family is rebuked, religious hypocrisy is rebuked, aristocratic beliefs are rebuked, and the means justifying the ends is rebuked.
Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones continue the new adventures of Zorro and his family in the new movie THE LEGEND OF ZORRO. It’s a rousing western adventure with plenty of thrilling action that gets better and better as it goes along. The intense excitement is laced with lots of strong moral, Christian values and elements.
The story opens in 1850 with Zorro, a.k.a. Alejandro, saving a box full of ballots for California’s statehood from a gang of cutthroats. The Catholic priest who regularly helps Zorro is also there, but the gang of cutthroats is led by a villain with a cross on his cheek who also talks about working for the Lord. At one point in the battle, Zorro is unmasked and his identity is discovered by two mysterious men.
Back home, Alejandro’s wife, Elena, is upset when she learns that Alejandro has decided to break his promise to quit the Zorro business after 10 long years. Don’t come back home, she tells him when the priest rings the bell calling for Zorro to come.
The next day, the two mystery men approach Elena in the marketplace and tell her that they will reveal Zorro’s true identity unless she does a big favor for them. Soon, Alejandro gets divorce papers, and Elena is seen in the company of a Frenchman, Count Armand, she knew in Spain when she was younger.
A large explosion near Armand’s hacienda arouses Alejandro’s suspicions. Time for Alejandro to don his Zorro persona one last time to protect the people, his family, the new state of California, and the United States of America, from Armand’s evil European plot of conquest.
THE LEGEND OF ZORRO is filled with exciting action, lots of humor and American patriotism. It also has a very strong Christian worldview with very strong moral values. For example, a Cross saves a man’s life, the Holy Trinity is affirmed, a priest quotes 1 Cor. 13, there are many visual references to Jesus, His sacrificial death and the Cross, evil is rebuked, and Zorro is a good role model for his young son, Joaquin. Ultimately, Zorro and his family discover that, although his family is his life, being a hero and fighting evil and injustice in their community is also their family’s moral duty. In this way, the family reconciles two conflicting Christian duties. As such, their story here serves as a great role model for us all.
Despite some problematic elements, such as a villain who talks about serving the Lord and a scene with a one-way conversation in front of the local church’s statue of the Virgin Mary (see the CONTENT section above for details), the movie’s positive traits get clearer and clearer as the story goes along. The movie’s ending is very strong, in fact. The movie’s first half may be a little morally and spiritually confusing, however, so MOVIEGUIDE® advises a light caution, especially for younger children.