Lifeline Theatre’s remount of Johnston McCulley’s 1919 classic “The Mark of Zorro” is pulpy, fast-paced fun, centered on the masked avenger who fights for the poor and urges the rich toward social responsibility. Given today’s headlines, where is Zorro when we need him?
The corrupt leadership in early 1800s California squeezes its beleaguered populace for taxes and persecutes anyone who questions their policies, including the family of the lovely, spirited Lolita (Christina Nieves). She is halfheartedly courted by Don Diego Vega (James Elly) an effete nobleman who’d rather discuss poetry than cross swords. Don Diego’s alter-ego Zorro appears, foiling the local regime. Elly handles the dual identity and swordplay ably and he and Nieves make a sweet couple.
The ensemble invests the piece with a good-natured energy and makes the most of Alan Donahue’s utilitarian, Spanish-influenced set. Dorothy Milne’s direction keeps the pacing upbeat and the action constant. En Garde! (Lisa Buscani)
At The Theater Building 1225 W. Belmont, (773)327-5252. Through November 23.