Friday, July 15, 2011

#4 The Mark of Zorro

The Mark of Zorro written and produced by Yuri Rasovsky of Hollywood Theater of the Ear for Blackstone Audio features a brilliant cast that includes such names as Val Kilmer (Top Gun, Heat, Tombstone), Ruth Livier (Ylse), Armin Shimerman (Star Trek Deep Space 9), Elizabeth Pena (The Incredibles), and Meshach Taylor (Designing Women). This original tale of the masked hero of Spanish California is a swashbuckling adventure masterpiece.

Val Kilmer brings a menacing toughness to the role of Zorro with delivery that falls somewhere between the forcefulness of Tyrone Power, the authoritative command of Duncan Regehr and the charm of Guy Williams. Kilmer's performance is nothing less than stellar. Ruth Livier nearly steals the show as fiery Lolita Pulido while Armin Shimerman and Meshach Taylor are brilliant as the Landlord and Sgt Gonzalez. The voice acting in this production is absolutely fantastic. The entire cast gives a performance for the ages. The Mark of Zorro provides three hours of listening fun.

Without a doubt this is a great audio drama. In our opinion, one of the best ever made! Others too have found The Mark of Zorro to be a fine production as it has been selected by AudioFile Magazine, Parade Magazine, and Sound Commentary as one of the best audio books of 2011. It is also a 2012 Grammy Award nominee and a 2012 Audie Award nominee.

From Blackstone Audio:

Set in Los Angeles during the era of early nineteenth century Colonial Spanish California, the story introduces us to wealthy, young aristocrat Don Diego de la Vega, son of the richest ranchero in the country. Don Diego is an idler who has never concerned himself with more than the cut of his clothes. Unlike other full-blooded youths of his age, he presents himself as a fop, lacking in vigor, vitality, and strength. But Vega’s timorous reputation is merely a mask to conceal his alter ego—El Zorro. As Zorro, dressed in black and wearing a mask, he is transformed into a cunning swordsman who fearlessly pulls off dashing and daring escapades in his quest to avenge the helpless, aid the poor and oppressed, and punish cruel officials. Deemed an outlaw by California’s corrupt governor, he is ever-hunted by the Commandante of La Reina de Los Angeles, Capitan Ramón, and his henchman, Sergeant Pedro Gonzalez.
Forced to find a wife or lose his inheritance, Diego sets off to romance the fiery, outspoken Lolita Pulido, the most beautiful señorita in Los Angeles. Unimpressed with Diego’s passionless efforts to win her affections, Lolita finds herself attracted to the dashing and courageous Zorro. With the Pulido family having been impoverished by the corrupt governor, her father would see her married to the rich Don Diego. At the same time, the nobly born, but morally dissolute, Captain Ramón has also taken an interest in the fair señorita, making matters worse. As tensions heighten between Ramon and the Pulido family and pursuit of the masked avenger intensifies, Zorro leaves his mark on those who would perpetrate injustice.
The Mark of Zorro, masterfully adapted into a full-cast audio drama by the award-winning Hollywood Theater of the Ear especially for Blackstone Audio, is an exciting, action packed, swashbuckling adventure that will have listeners on the edge of their seats.

For more Zorro see also:

Zorro and the Pirate Raiders

Zorro Rides Again

The Mark of Zorro Sequel 

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