Seeing Disney putting out a new action-packed adventurer with Johnny Depp headlining is normal these days. With four Pirates of the Caribbean films on his resume, this re-boot of the classic isn’t a surprise; especially given studios affinity to re-make instead of, hey, here’s a novel idea, originality.
The Lone Ranger (2013) Film Review
All of the whispered tales of The Lone Ranger and his trusty sidekick, Tonto tell of heroic adventures. Or so that is what the young would-be cowboy questions an aged Tonto when, while touring an exhibit on display at the carnival, Tonto (Depp) suddenly comes to life.
It starts on a train ride to a dusty Texas town where John (Armie Hammer), a good peace-loving lawyer believes everything can be solved without gunfire. He’s on the train that will lead him back to his hometown. Trouble is, when the train is attacked by a gang looking to free a prisoner, John finds himself trying to handle the situation. Instead finds himself shackled next to a second prisoner watching as the criminal rides away. That prisoner is Tonto.
Unlike his brother, John’s brother is Texas Ranger brother, readying to ride out after the escaped poisoner. In his return, he also must face the woman he still desperately loves, his sister-in-law (Ruth Wilson). But desperate to find justice, John insists on accompanying his brother unaware that an ambush awaits the group of men.
Despite some hit or miss feelings about “modern” westerns, trailers for this movie had me laughing at its antics. Though I won’t review this in consideration of the original, I will say that I understand some of the critic complaints. They’re reasonable though to be honest, this would-be blockbuster is too much fun to dismiss.
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The film starts with a bang and a surprising bout of humor, and has a great albeit familiar set up, with an exception. Honestly, I wasn’t fond of the script starting in a latter “present” only to retreat into the past. I’m not sure what purpose this serves. This method seems most foolish if studios have sequel plans, and at the very least leaves the audience sort of depressed by what is, an otherwise rip-roaring hilarious film.
Of course, the acting is nothing to sneeze at. Depp’s character acting continues to amaze. Then there is newbie Armie Hammer who you may recognize from Mirror Mirror. He really steps up to fit this role and it’s good to see a cast suited to their respective roles; plus Helena Bonham Carter gets some screen time. Disney again creates a production full of genius with its spectacular stunts and costuming. Another flaw is the film does run overlong; its “stops” in the middle of a sequence to return to the “present” don’t help. There’s still lots of excitement and humor though for anyone who isn’t a fan of “slapstick,” this flirts with silly on occasion. Perhaps not my favorite adventure of a blockbuster, one cannot argue that The Lone Ranger knows how to do exhilaration.
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You can find The Lone Ranger (2013) digitally on Amazon Video
Content: there’s some “tense” sequences in which characters are threatened with guns or other violence [explosions, hanging sentences] and a group of rangers are murdered in an ambush. There is some thematic elements revolving around Tonto’s heritage. Some cheeky innuendo and perhaps a minor profanity here and there. The film is PG13.