Skip to main content

Movie: The Lone Ranger (2013)

I was all ready to give The Lone Ranger the benefit of the doubt after it was widely panned by, seemingly, almost everyone as a bad film (it was for that reason I didn't rush to see it in a cinema and am only just seeing it now on VOD) but I do agree it has its problems.

Warning: Some spoilers ahead!

I'm not going to go so far as to say it's a bad movie. There is so much to like about it. It contains some great, escapist action (highly improbable but awesome to see), some good humor, I liked Johnny Depp as Tonto and even Armie Hammer was a good choice for The Lone Ranger. My problem is that right from the beginning it seems somewhat confused and muddled.

The plot can be described fairly simply. It's the Lone Ranger's origin story. How could you muddle and confuse that? By opening the movie in 1930's with a young boy, dressed as the Lone Ranger, talking to a museum exhibit of a very old Tonto (supposedly a manikin or wax dummy that comes to life) who then goes on to relate the story of John Reid A.K.A. the Lone Ranger. A story set in 1869.

Sure it says something about how kids have always been fascinated by the legend of the Lone Ranger (I certainly was growing up) but the film doesn't do anything with it. There's no great revelation in the 1930's about anything we've just seen at the end of the film. The story just ends. You could take that whole section out and not miss it at all.

The only reason I can see for it is that it allows the story to jump around. I don't think it ever goes out of sequence but it does allow the film to fast forward past things that may have bogged the movie down.

It also helps to explain a pretty magical white horse turning up in some pretty improbable situations and moments. For example, the horse just randomly shows up on top of a barn roof. The barn is on fire and has a two or three gunmen out side watching to shoot anyone that might come out. The obvious thing to do is climb to the barn roof where you're surprised to see your horse waiting to help make your getaway.

Highly improbable but if you recall, you're watching a story that is being retold to a young, impressionable boy. Such an improbable situation as a horse turning up on the roof of a barn is likely to be the artistic embellishment of the story teller.

Having said that, the weird white horse turning up in odd places is actually a highlight of the film that nearly upstages Johnny Depp's understated but still quirky Tonto.

I can't really fault Depp's performance as Tonto, other than to say I was expecting a character a little more outrageous, more along the lines of Captain Jack Sparrow.

Unlike the Pirates movies, I suspect Depp and the film makers were conscious of the cultural sensitivities of Depp playing a native American and didn't want to make the character too eccentric. (Some people seemed to find it offensive and weren't buying Depp's links to native American people as proper justification for not hiring an actual native American actor)

Armie Hammer, on the other hand, did look the part of the Lone Ranger but the script he had to work with really didn't make him as likeable as he needed to be. He started off well, as a very straight down the line lawyer type who believes in the judicial process, however he never really veers too far from that ideal.

By the end of the film John Reid is still John Reid the naive and somewhat annoying lawyer rather than a more weathered and experienced Lone Ranger. We never really get inside his head or get the urge to dig deeper into his psyche.

It's a shame because I did think Armie was good with what he had to work with and his character should have been the focus of the film despite Depp being the bigger star. In contrast, just about everyone in Man of Steel was a bigger star than Henry Cavill but that film was still all about his character and he was on all the posters. Depp fans would have seen the Lone Ranger whether he was the focus of the marketing or not.

Those were my main issues with the film. The way it was told meant there was quite a bit of time between each set action piece, which would have been fine, but the character moments didn't do enough to get you invested in any of them, other than Tonto.

Things like John Reid waking up on top of an enormous wooden scaffolding, on top of an almost impossible to access peak, looked great in the trailer but was only onscreen momentarily in the film with no explanation. Not even how he got up there nor how he got down.

A better edit of the film, minus all the story telling scenes by the older Tonto, could really lift this film in my opinion. It had all the elements to be a fast paced western with Indiana Jones type action and they bogged it down with unnecessary exposition that could have been replaced with scenes to help us relate more to the main character.

The Lone Ranger is certainly worth your time. It's definitely not as bad as you've been lead to believe. However it could have been so much better and definitely had more of a chance for multiple movies.

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Buy Gifts and Apparel featuring art by TET

Popular posts from this blog

Why 'We Believe: The Best Men Can Be | Gillette (Short Film)' Misses the Mark

If you're one of the few people who haven't at least heard about Gillette's short film, We Believe: The Best Men Can Be then take a moment to watch their video below. It seems like it is an earnest attempt to address undesirable male behaviour and attitudes that have become branded with the unhelpful term 'Toxic Masculinity' but for me, and a lot of people, it just missed the mark.

At this point, the real success of the film, despite the Youtube dislike ratio of approximately 2:1 is the increased brand awareness for Gillette - and I guess the 1 million a year for the next three years they will be donating to programs supporting men of positive action (but they could have done that anyway with no fanfare).



I get what Gillette were going for here by showing examples of past/current behaviour/attitudes in communities, business, and media that has brought about terms like 'toxic masculinity' and the #metoo movement. It's an attempt at reflection on whether…

Guest Post: MY SOOPER DOOPER NEW CONSERVATORY/ART STUDIO!

Today's guest post is by Artist, Writer, and Mental Health Advocate, Jo B Creative who writes for her blog, Creating My Oddessey.

You should see our (almost) brand new conservatory, half of which is my art studio. 'Lucky me!' I think to myself. Not every creative bod can boast that. It's HUGE! Like a giant greenhouse.

We first moved to our pleasant cul-de-sac house - great for raising kids - when our son, who's on the cusp of thirty-one, was four. One of the main reasons that we wanted it was that, apart from its location on the fringes of a historic market town in rural Hampshire, UK, it had a sizable conservatory looking onto the back garden. It was brown wood framed and had a corrugated transparent roof sloping down from downstairs ceiling height. On the face of it, it doesn't sound that glamourous, but we loved the idea of a conservatory. Luxury! I even liked the red brick walls which it was built against - the original exterior of the house - and the light …

My First Time on a P&O Cruise Ship - Mini Cruise Almost to Kangaroo Island

Outwardly I wasn't concerned about my first time on a P&O Cruise ship but inwardly I guess my subconscious anxiety was working overtime. I'll spare you the details but just know my digestive system was pretty empty by the time my partner, Kathy, and I left the house.

That said, once we were on the boat for our three day cruise from Adelaide, South Australia, with a stop at Kangaroo Island (KI), and back to Adelaide again, everything went pretty well, with nothing to be too concerned about. 
The ship didn't leave until four in the afternoon. However we were able to board in time to not only have lunch on the boat but also spend a couple of hours exploring.
Our ship was called the Pacific Eden and is pretty much what you might imagine a cruise ship to be from the outside. Maybe bigger or smaller than you think depending upon whether you've seen a cruise ship before. This particular ship will be retired from March 2019, having been sold to another cruise ship company…

Review: Titans, Season One, Netflix/WBTV Original Series *Minor Spoilers*

When I saw the first trailers for the Netflix/WBTV original series Titans my expectations were set extremely low. Granted my point of reference was the recent Teen Titans Go animated series (and movie), which I've seen a few episodes, and don't like at all. To be fair though, that show is definitely not targeted at me.

Anyhow the Titan trailer didn't do enough to hook me in and Robin's 'F*ck Batman' quote toward the end had my eyes rolling with 'here we go again with a whiney, entitled Robin like the Chris O'donnell version in the 1990's movies.

However, from the very first episode I was pleasantly surprised with the story and ideas presented, and was hooked, to the point of binge watching several episodes in a row if I had time.

We learn Dick Grayson is trying to retire from being Robin and has moved to Detroit, where he's working as a detective for the Detroit PD.

Full disclosure, I've been wanting to see a new take on a live action Robin…

Movie Review: Avengers: Infinity War (2018) *Spoiler Free*

Ten years in the making and Marvel finally releases part one of the Avengers versus Thanos, A.K.A. Avengers: Infinity War.

After seeing all 18 films in the MCU prior to this, and liking most of them, I was pretty confident this movie would not disappoint.

Other than a few minor issues - that are all my personal taste and in no way reflect on the quality of the film - it really delivers. Thanos is indeed the big, bad villain of the MCU that we've been antcipating.

Creating a Mobile Independent Artist Business - Part 10: Opportunities to make money (Part A)

In my last post I looked at What to Create and Finding Your Market. This post is something of a natural follow on from finding your market as many of these money making opportunities include their own market places that you can research to see what kinds of themes and subjects sell best.

It's worth doing this research to find out if the art you're already creating is a good fit for that market place - which is ideal - or if you may have to consider expanding your interests to cover popular themes in order sell in a particular market.

Movie Review: The Death of Superman (2018 Animated Feature) *Spoilers*

From time to time I keep checking in on WB Animation to see what they're doing with their DC Superheroes, so, when I saw The Death of Superman appear on Netflix my first thought was... didn't they do this already?

2007's animated feature, Superman/Doomsday is based on the same Death of Superman comic and, while the two movies are not exactly the same story, they are very similar.

The main difference may be that Superman/Doomsday tells almost the complete story arc of the comic series it's based upon whereas this new feature continues the story in a sequel animated movie, Reign of the Supermen (which I haven't seen).

I've said before, I don't read comics, but I know enough that The Death of Superman graphic novel is meant to be one of the all time great Superman stories.

I don't know how faithful an adaptation this film is? Hopefully not close because it's terrible.

In this movie we have a Superman who is well into his Justice League years but seemi…