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The Legend of Zorro (2005)

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Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Director Martin Campbell and director of photography Phil Meheux Rating:7.0/10 (1 vote) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by iwantmytvm on July 25th, 2020:Find all reviews by iwantmytvm
Campbell and Meheux deliver an informative and conversational track. Campbell carried the track for the previous Zorro film on his own. That track was better, as was the film, but this track is not without highlights, although it has some gaps. They speak a lot about lighting, either ambient and tricks to use sunlight at different times of day to their advantage or some techniques that helped with the night shots. They were obliged to do a lot of day for night shooting due to child labor laws. Much of the sets were built on location at the hacienda used in the film, and both men are quite impressed by the production design. They point out how various parts of the hacienda were connected, as well as the geography of other locations. Campbell talks about some scenes that were cut and tweaked, mostly for length and pace, and some bits that had to be trimmed or reshot to preserve a PG rating, rather than the PG-13 of the predecessor. There were some lines that were chopped because of dated references to WMDs. The original idea for bookends to the film was filmed but eventually altered at the behest of the studio. Campbell recognizes what some critics had to say about the film, acknowledging that this film was based more on action than relationships. However, there was less of that to build as it had all been covered in the first film. He refutes a couple of boundless critiques.

They had a smaller budget for this film. Working with animals was again a challenge, and multiple pigeons and horses were used to facilitate those scenes. Meheux reveals that horses cannot lean, so the entire set was tilted and then the frame straightened in the edit to give the appearance that the horse was leaning against a wall. They tease at some gossip by alluding to a certain actor who actually drinks when supposed to be acting drunk, but they do not offer up a name. The weather was often favorable as Mexico is typically sunny but they were forced indoors at times. For the train sequences, they used actual trains when possible on real tracks, with collaboration they bought from Mexican rail. The practical trains were blended with miniatures and models created by Weta Workshop.

Campbell also provides commentary for some deleted scenes, including the alternate bookends opening and ending.