Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Lone Ranger

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching! Hi-Ho, Silver...Let's go!  (That's what he says, right?)

The Lone Ranger – 3 out of 5

I like The Lone Ranger but have you heard of The Lone Rangers? They’re awesome!

Hmmm, never realized The Lone Ranger was so young.

Okay, the dude on the right is the creepy uncle that is no
longer allowed at family get togethers.
During a time when the West was wild, a young, and hungry for justice, lawyer; John Reid (Armie Hammer—Arm and Hammer? Army Hammer?) joins his badass, gun-slinging brother in a posse to take down the notorious and vile villain Butch Cavendish (William Fichtner). However, a traitor in their midst causes the posse to be gunned down and only John clings to life. A wandering Comanche Native American named Tonto (Johnny Depp)—who has also been hunting Butch because he believes him to be a wicked spirit—nurses Reid back to life and points him in the direction of extracting vengeance upon Cavendish for the death of his brother. Donning a mask, Reid becomes The Lone Ranger and he and Tonto set off to bring justice to the Wild West. However, they soon learn that their target has ties to a powerful railroad tycoon.

Spoiler Alert:  The railroad tycoon is the umbrella.  It's a strange movie.

The critics and audiences haven’t been too kind with this one but I was pretty sold on it when I saw the first trailer. I really enjoy director Gore Verbinski’s work and have found the man can really make movies that are action packed, filled with colorful characters and have just the right amount of humor that keeps everything light and fun. In all honesty, despite some minor issues I had with The Lone Ranger, I have to go against the grain and disagree with the popular vote because I found the movie to be pretty enjoyable to sit through.

Pictured:  Me trying to escape after admitting that I disagree with the masses of the internet

The only problems I had with the film comes from the fact it does feel a little longer than it should have been, so there are parts where the story tended to drag and there’s even a part of the film where it feels it should be wrapping up but it suddenly goes on a little longer. However, each time it started to drag, a really great action sequence or some funny moments between Tonto and Reid would start and the dip in pace no longer becomes an issue and only seems like a minor inconvenience.

Another Spoiler Alert:  His teeth stayed white the entire film.

When I wear a mask, I'm called a burglar.  When he wears a
mask, he's called a hero.  It doesn't matter that I was caught
breaking and entering, my point is still valid.
While the man eventually gets to really embody the man in the mask, I wasn’t completely sold on Hammer as The Lone Ranger for much of the film. I understand the film is the origin story of the fabled hero but for much of the movie, The Ranger came off as a bumbling fool who couldn’t tie his shoes if given a week of study and prep time to do so. Eventually, he becomes the badass gunman that has been established on television and radio but the change he goes through felt way too sudden and the development of him to that point felt sloppy. He’s pretty much pathetic for much of the film and then the third act hits and *BAM!* he’s a hero. While it’s distracting, Hammer is still very funny and amusing to watch as the growing hero and then is very cool as the epic cowboy, the only problem I had was how the story made the very abrupt jump from one to the next. However, if there’s a sequel (which I really hope there will be), Hammer is already prepared to be the legend.

Legends often ride their horses through trains.

Tonto is literally staring through your computer screens right now
and into your homes.
Finally, I don’t know if it’s racist or not to have Depp (is he still pretending to be British?) as a Native American but he was definitely entertaining as the eccentric Tonto. Depp is known for playing wildly eccentric characters and, sometimes, he can be fantastic in those roles and sometimes I find myself saying, “Boy, wouldn’t it be nice to see if he can just play a regular guy and find out if he can do it?” Tonto was one of those roles where Depp was more than just acting strange in make-up; he really owned the role and made him a very comic, cartoon-like sidekick—even though it’s unfair to call him a sidekick. I can’t say Depp stole the movie because there’s no denying, despite the title of the film, this movie was more about Tonto than anything else. Most scenes focus on him and he’s even the one who is telling the story as the film is told by an elderly Tonto regaling a young boy about the rise of The Lone Ranger.

Depp, shown here sharing a scene with another actress who is known for playing
eccentric characters.  That's right, Helena Bonham Carter played the horse.
(Bet you thought I was going to go for a Sarah Jessica Parker joke.)

I won’t deny that the film had some issues but none of them were successful in throwing me out of the film like how I get thrown out of the farmer’s market last week after diving into the broccoli stand and loudly proclaiming that I am the Broccoli King. Everything else about the film is amazing. Hammer and Depp make a very unique team on the screen and really had great chemistry together, while William Fichtner, an actor I am already a big fan of, is great as Butch Cavendish and he just looks all kinds of gross and terrifying in his make-up.

Butch's face killed more people than his gun.

Another Spoiler Alert:  They get decapitated at one point.
Finally, the film has a perfect blend of very funny moments and some very awesome action. Hell, my complaint about the story dragging instantly became null and void the moment the final action scene takes place. The very exciting train sequence looks flashy and cool, and is just wildly over-the-top fun and action-packed. The Lone Ranger may not be a perfect adaptation of the classic tale but it was a pleasantly surprising and fun popcorn action movie that appealed to the part of me that just craves slick action.

Everyone looks cool when they're on a horse and it does this.


  1. Nice to see I was not alone in my viewpoint of this film. In fact, I made my own rebuttal to alot of the complaints and criticisms leveled at the film:

    1. Indeed so...your point about marketing and merchandising. I never even thought about that when concerning the film's failure to break even. I mainly focus on the films themselves and their context and elements within them and don't really think twice about things like merchandising and such (unless it is so obnoxious that I can't help but see it) but never even thought about the money they lose but not doing what Disney is so good at: Selling Merch.

      Not to mention the whole connection to the Marvel properties.


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