Saying that this movie adaptation of the 1930s radio series didn’t do too well at the box office is kind of an understatement. It completely flopped. And even that is understating things. Critics even went as far as saying that this one was worse than Will Smith’s 1999’s “Wild Wild West” fiasco. Now, that’s saying something. Personally, I didn’t think it was just that bad but that’s mostly because this movie comes without a huge mechanical spider.
Arnie Hammer stars as John Reid, a pacifist lawyer who joins his brother in the wild west. Unfortunately his brother is killed by Butch Cavendish (William Fichtner) just after he arrives. Reid himself is left for dead but an Indian called Tonto (Johnny Depp with a dead crow on his head) brings him back to life so he can avenge his brother.
What follows are two-and-a-half-hours of explosions and seemingly endless chases that are tied together by slapstick comedy and a story that is all over the place. It doesn’t exactly take a genius to see that producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Gore Verbinski are desperately trying to recreate the success of the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise by placing Depp with equally thick layers of make-up and idiotic tics in a saddle.
The problem with The Lone Ranger are not the action sequences (even though they will probably have physicists scratching their heads). It’s mostly that Verbinski can’t seem to decide who he’s making this movie for. Is it for kids? There are plenty of slapstick moments that are good for a laugh and the action looks spectacular. But parents don’t usually like having their kids watch a guy’s heart getting cut out and then eaten. Is it for adults then? Not really. And can someone tell me why this movie is called The Lone Ranger when the hero is portrayed as a complete wimp and the story actually centers around Tonto?
So no, this is not a good movie. Actually, it’s proof of the theory that a movie can’t be any good when you need multiple writers. Here, they had three of them at their disposal. So why am I not completely thrashing this movie? Because I managed to turn my brain off and just go with the silliness.