I forced the family to go see The Lone Ranger because, well, it's Johnny Depp.
Yes, I have issues.
You would think that the team that turned a Disneyland ride into a multi-billion dollar franchise would have no problem doing the same to a classic radio/TV program. Unfortunately, the movie's budget has been questioned by Disney's CEO over its super-long production cycle, there's been controversy over the casting of Johnny Depp as a Native American, and the critics have royally trashed it. It's neither as good as it could have been or as bad as critics have would have you believe.
1) In this version, Tonto has more common sense smarts than the Ranger.
2) Tonto's origin story is shown as well as the Ranger's. There's some really good characterization that I wish the writers and director had embellished.
3) William Fichtner did a delightfully evil job as Butch Cavendish, so much so that I didn't recognize him and was flabbergasted when the credits rolled.
4) Helena Bonham Carter and her artificial leg rocked. Trust me, you have to see the movie to understand.
1) I normally love mixed genre movies, but the writers did some paranormal stuff that didn't match even my sense of weirdness. It's pretty bad when DH leans over and says, "That rabbit, he's a killer." Other times, the story swung between action-adventure and spoof.
2) Nothing against Armie Hammer. He did the best he could with the script, but the Lone Ranger should have died in the first fifteen minutes of the movie. Yes, he was that much of a tenderfoot, and it did not improve.
3) The story needed some serious pruning. SERIOUS pruning. The framing story of a 100-year-old Tonto relating his adventures to a young fan should have been ditched entirely. The kid asking questions of Tonto kept yanking me out of the story. The rest needed to be tightened.
Overall, I give The Lone Ranger a 7 out of 10. A fun afternoon if you have nothing else better to do or if you're a huge Johnny Depp fan. Otherwise, you might want to wait until it comes out on DVD.
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