Zorro has had many screen incarnations since his debut in this silent, but few of them have veered far from that first film’s insouciant tone. Zorro’s legacy has been one of carefree prankishness rather than grim heroism. Watching Douglas Fairbanks Sr. prance around as the Spanish Californian nobleman by day and masked crusader for the oppressed by night brings to mind Jackie Chan more than Batman, even though the latter superhero likely wouldn’t exist if it was not for the Zorro of Johnston McCulley’s pulp stories. As Zorro, Fairbanks arrives on the scene with cigarette in hand, playfully puffing smoke through his nose at his adversaries. A bowl of nuts is as likely to be used as a weapon as his sword. What Fairbanks lacked in handsomeness – he is the rare screen idol who benefits from playing a character in a mask – he makes up for in agility. The movie’s climactic chase scene runs Fairbanks through a series of daredevil stunts, none of which need computer-generated wizardry to delight.