Returning to 19th-century Los Angeles from Spain, Don Diego Vega (Power) discovers that his father Don Alejandro (Love) has been deposed as governor by tax-happy tyrant Don Luis Quintero (Bromberg). Allaying the suspicions of Quintero and evil sidekick Capt. Pasquale (Rathbone) with his foppish airs, Don Diego secretly dons a black mask and cape and fights to restore Alejandro to power — as the mysterious master swordsman, Zorro.
Under Mamoulian’s sure-footed direction, only Power could one-up Douglas Fairbanks with this rousing remake of the 1920 silent classic, still the zingiest and most technically dazzling Zorro of the bunch. Power is so adept at shifting from the slightly doltish Don Diego to the heroic masked avenger that it's difficult to imagine anyone else in the role. Among the fabulous supporting cast, Rathbone stands out as Zorro's loathsome nemesis; Bromberg and Gale Sondergaard are delightful as the ruthless regents; and Linda Darnell is winning as the love interest. Daring horseback rides, thrilling duels, exquisite cinematography; what more could you want in a swashbuckler?