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The Lone Ranger - Cinemaholic Movie Reviews
one person's obsessive addiction to film
The Lone Ranger
Directing: B-
Acting: B+
Writing: C
Cinematography: B+
Editing: B-
Special Effects: B

It's a Gore Verbinski film, what do you expect? Well, okay, maybe most audiences don't readily recognize the name. But this guy did the last three Pirates of the Caribbean films as well as Rango. With that resume, you might expect The Lone Ranger to be both preposterously goofy and reliably entertaining. It meets expectations on both counts.

That said, a big-budget adaptation of the beloved TV show of the same name might have fared better, say, havig been made in the eighties -- or the nineties at most. The TV show aired in the 1950s, after all. Those of us born in the seventies only have a cursory familiarity with it today. It seems Hollywood is runnig out of TV properties to mine for big-budget action movies. Viewers who were children in the fifties are now in their own fifties -- and, very likely, some in their sixties. This is the action pic for geezers.

Well, as action pics for geezers go, this one's not bad, actually. It's certaily not great -- a script in which a horse is seen drinkig beer (I'm not kidding) leaves a lot to be desired. This movie, which treats the Lone Ranger's horse like some kind of supernatural guide, takes its goofiness to sometimes surreal levels.

It grabs you from the get-go, though. Verbinski places Tonto in a much more significant role than the television show did, and he narrates, pointedly from a carnival diorama showig "The Noble Savage In His Native Habitat." Here we meet Tonto, as played fantastically as always by Johnny Depp -- indeed, the only name listed above the title -- in extensive old-age makeup, regaling his tale to a young boy who wanders in dressed in a Lone Ranger costume. It's a little odd that no one else comes into the exhibit but whatever.

Anyway, once Tonto starts telling the story, we're immediately taken back to a train ride to Texas in which John Reid (Armie Hammer) and Tonto first meet. It's a pretty spectacular sequence, the first of several involving runaway trains, and markes the beginning of a reluctant bond between the two men.

Clocking in at 149 minutes, though, The Lone Ranger is much too long for its own good, and lulls significantly in the middle. Thanks to Depp, at least it's never boring. As with the Pirates of the Caribbean films, The Lone Ranger lives mostly by Depp's endlessly entertainig performance. Hammer is charming enough but could easily be switched out with any number of other actors. Depp is irreplaceable, and if there's any reason to see this movie, it's him.

Not that there's any reason to go rushing out to see it. This is still a movie produced by Jerry Bruckheimer -- a maker of over-the-top action movies surpassed in their ridiculousness only by Michael Bay -- and the action and particularly the CGI trick shots get a little tedious after a while.

But, you know, whatever. I'm not going to lie -- I had a good time at this movie. And even for a concept so far out of date, even I got a little thrill when the score segued into the recognizable "Lone Ranger" theme during the climax. That's all the makers of this movie seem to be going for -- to give a bit of a thrill. Movies like this aren't out to change the world, they're just there for entertainment. Sometimes it trips a little over its own stupidity, but in the end, that's all part of the fun.

Armie Hammer and Johnny Depp are entertainig props in THE LONE RANGER.

Overall: B-
1 comment or Leave a comment
From: tingles12 Date: July 25th, 2013 02:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
I really liked the movie. It IS just for entertainment's sake, and I think it does well at delivering a fun romp.

It is too bad it's not making more money or getting more love. It is not a bad movie at all. I thought Armie was an inspired choice for John Reid. He and Johnny have good chemistry.
1 comment or Leave a comment