Friday, 9 August 2013

Review: The Lone Ranger

World of Blackout Film Review

The Lone Ranger Poster

The Lone Ranger
Cert: 12A / 149 mins / Dir. Gore Verbinski

There really isn't a lot to say about this latest Pirates of the Caribbean movie*1, other than it does exactly what you expect it to, exactly when you expect it to, and for far too long.

There's nothing inherently bad about the film; it's just not interesting enough. There are flashes of greatness sprinkled here and there, but they're outnumbered by flashes of 'yes, get on with it', as dull characters with no backstory fail to develop because they're supporting Johnny Depp Wearing A Hat™. Visually, the film is beautiful, with some stunning landscapes and a mixture of colour palettes. Audibly, Hanz Zimmer scores the film like only he can*2, so we're in tried and tested hands there. The lead players are all comfortably ensconced in their roles, giving 'reliable' performances. It's just...

…why isn't a film featuring a man riding a horse on the top of a train more exciting? Probably because it feels like it doesn't know what it wants to be. There's a great action movie struggling to get out, bound by a Disneyfied gun-toting hero who steadfastly refuses to shoot anyone until the final climactic scene (and even then he pretty much misses), and a sidekick who's the star of the show, whose Pidgin English becomes remarkably fluent when the plot requires it.

It made me smile, it made me yawn, it made me fidget*3. Despite what I've said about PotC, the framing device with Old-Tonto talking to the child, combined with the horse/train action set-pieces reminded me a lot of Indiana Jones. Only… without the fun.

Interestingly, the pre-trailer ads featured, amongst other things: Haribo, Jack Daniels, Nerf Guns and Cidre. Even the advertising companies don't know who this is meant to be aimed at.

Is the trailer representative of the film?
Pretty much..

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?
Sometimes. Not enough. Although the 'hi-ho Silver' line is funny.

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Make money for Jerry Bruckheimer? Not from what I hear…

Pay at the cinema, Rent on DVD or just wait for it to be on the telly?

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
Only in advance of the sequel.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?
I think I heard one, yes. When Ian Ranger and Ian Tonto jump off the train (that narrows it down, I know).

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

And my question for YOU is…
Johnny Depp is capable of much better work. When is he going to prove that to everyone?

*1 Seriously, though; you know that's exactly what this is.
*2 Or, 'the only way he knows how', depending on how fond you are of his work.
*3 Not with my phone, that goes without saying. I just lost interest to the point where I was reminded how uncomfortable my non-aisle-seat was.

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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