Steen: Go see The Lone Ranger if you really like horses

Hammer’s acting is a little light though the rest of the cast does well, but it’s not enough to make this a “go see.” 

The Lone Ranger

I’m actually not sure what to make of The Lone Ranger.

It’s not exactly a comedy, it’s sort of a western, there’s some action, lots of bad stuff being done to Native Americans, there’s fantasy because some scenes are just not even possible to believe (cue the horse), there’s a whole lot of crooked guys trying to make a whole lot of money, no matter who gets hurt, so there’s suspense.

You’d think with all that, this might be a great film—it’s not!

It’s in the telling of the story that things get a little wonky and it’s hard to find the tale (yes we know it’s just a story) even somewhat believable as it’s being told by a very old Tonto (whose name actually means “fool” in Spanish, so they changed the name to “Toro” which means bull, and there’s a whole lot of that going on here!)

We do find out why he’s called The Lone Ranger and how his horse got his name (remember the horse’s name?).

The original Lone Ranger was a radio show and led to a spin off radio series called The Green Hornet.

John Reid (Lone Ranger) is played by Armie Hammer. As a Ranger he’s just silly and awkward.  Hammer’s great grandfather was Armand Hammer, (often thought to be named after the baking soda), and who, for decades, ran Occidental Petroleum and whose dubious history is still being written.

Tonto, the Spirit Warrior (Johnny Depp) is, of the two of them, the one with the brains, and through a tragic error in judgement years before, has been outcast from his tribe.

Depp had a serious accident during the filming when a fall from his horse left him bruised and cut. He credits the horse, which jumped to avoid stepping on him, for saving his life. Thankfully, the horse has enough smarts for everyone.

William Fichtner plays the truly evil Butch Cavendish, Tom Wilkinson, as Cole, Helena Bonham Carter is “Red” Harrington. This is actually the first film which features Depp and Carter where Tim Burton is not the director.

So, would I recommend the film? If you have the time (it’s long), and if you are a real Depp fan, as he’s once again in full character mode with make-up inspired by artist Kerby Sattler’s painting entitled “I am Crow.”

I might recommend it if you like horses, but with so many good shows either out now or coming soon, I wonder if it’s worth it.

Hammer’s acting is a little light though the rest of the cast does well, but it’s not enough to make this a “go see.”

It cost $225 million to make and in Canada the two-day box office totals were $11.7 million. Despicable Me 2 came in with $34.3 million and might be a better bet.

I give The Lone Ranger two reels (and that’s for the horse).

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