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France, 1803: 11 years after the Revolution, a royalist underground is led by a new 'Scarlet Pimpernel', the Purple Mask, who rescues nobles in distress and kidnaps Napoleon's officials for ransom, aided by the spy services of a group of lovely models headed by Laurette (really the Duc de Latour's daughter). But even she doesn't know the Purple Mask's real identity as foppish dancing master Rene...Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Try as he might Tony Curtis in his long career never really lost that Bronx
speech pattern. It was the reason he got the horselaugh when he did these
swashbucklers. He was so much better in modern dress and when The Purple
Mask came out it was 2 years from his breakthrough part in Sweet Smell Of
In this film Curtis plays a Zorro like character who dons a purple mask and
goes around freeing members of the old nobility. The Reign Of Terror maybe over, but the first Consul Napoleon Bonaparte still has a use for the
guillotine to chop off a noble head or three.
Which is where the Purple Mask comes in. By day Curtis is a dancing master as
his Clark Kent/Don Diego self. But come the night he's Counterrevolution superhero The Purple Mask and one nasty customer with a sword.
Curtis liked it enough all right. I think The Purple Mask was nothing to write
In his memoirs Curtis rather unfairly attacked Angela Lansbury who was at a low point in her career and was desperate for roles and appeared in this in a
rather nothing part as a maid. She clearly said she did The Purple Mask for a
paycheck. Curtis took the statement rather personally and was most unfair
to Lansbury in his memoir.
Other familiar faces in The Purple Mask are Colleen Miller, Gene Barry, Dan O'Herlihy and John Hoyt. I'm sure The Purple Mask was no high point in their
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