Courtesy Disney
Reviewers have had it up to here with the would-be blockbuster, opening tomorrow.

The Unforgiving: Ten Savage Disses of 'The Lone Ranger'


The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp as Tonto, opens tomorrow. It has been, quite easily, the most debated piece of entertainment in Indian country for the past year. But among critics, there is little debate: This, they say, is not a good movie. At the review-agregating site Rotten Tomatoes, which provides a rating based on critical consensus, The Lone Ranger enjoys a 17% approval (and falling—it started the day with 20%). Ranger's box-office competition is faring much better: Despicable Me 2, also opening tomorrow, scores 80%, while the top three earners in theaters now, Monsters University, The Heat, and World War Z, enjoy respective 78%, 62%, and 68% favorable ratings.

It seems to happen every year: Critics so gleefully attack one particular film that it seems almost a contest to see who can deliver the best zinger. Here are some of the nominees.

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: "Even Johnny Depp can’t save the day":

"Director Gore Verbinski’s The Lone Ranger is for anyone who thought the Native American guy from the Village People and a western-wear model would make the perfect blockbuster-action team."

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune: "The Lone Ranger: Western is Completely at Sea":

"In scenes such as hundreds of Natives being slaughtered by U.S. troops behind Gatling guns, we have Tonto and the Lone Ranger acting like a couple of comic-relief ninnies, screwing around aimlessly for laughs on a handcar. It's as if the movie were having a nervous breakdown. At one point the masked man gets his head dragged through horse manure. Watching The Lone Ranger, you know the feeling."

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle: "The Lone Ranger review: Lawman turns antihero":

"The Lone Ranger is a movie for the whole family ... to avoid. It represents 2 1/2 of the longest hours on record, a jumbled botch that is so confused in its purpose and so charmless in its effect that it must be seen to be believed, but better yet, no. Don't see it, don't believe it, not unless a case of restless leg syndrome sounds like a fun time at the movies."

Jack Coyle, Associated Press: "The Lone Ranger is a Runaway Train":

"There's a limit, it turns out, to how much Johnny Depp and a bucket of makeup can accomplish."

Two Jews on Film, "Johnny Depp Is More Jack Sparrow Than Native American Warrior Tonto":

"At times [Johnny Depp] sounded like a bad Catskills comedian instead of a Native American warrior."

Alonso Duralde, The Wrap: "The Lone Ranger: Hi-Yawn Silver, Awaaaay!":

"Depp's presence in the movie actively undercuts our investment in the Lone Ranger as a character, much less as a hero. Imagine Christopher Nolan casting Joan Rivers as Alfred in the Dark Knight movies so she could follow around Batman and make jokes about his ridiculous outfit."

Bob Mondello, NPR: "A Familiar Wild West, But The Guy In The Mask? Who's He?":

"The script fancies itself a critique of capitalism, a manifesto on manifest destiny, and a saga about silver mines and the slaughter of Native Americans. All very admirable, if not a great fit for scenes that involve Depp communing with snaggle-toothed cannibal bunny rabbits and taking a runaway train ride or six."

William Bibbiani, Crave Online: "At Least Armie Hammer is Good":

"There’s something about concluding the massacre of hundreds of Native Americans with a cheap joke about a horse in a funny hat that rubs me the wrong way. The Lone Ranger tries so hard to be every kind of movie at once that it ends up being no kind of movie at all."

Ty Burr, Boston Globe: "Who Was That Masked Man? Who Cares.":

"Gore Verbinski’s bloated, $250 million western comedy is like watching an elephant tap dance in your living room: Everything gets trampled and the dancing’s not very good."

All harsh words—but perhaps no reviewer comes down harder on The Lone Ranger than this guy:

Drew McWeeny, HitFix: "Johnny Depp and Gore Verbinski Fail to Bring The Lone Ranger Back to Life":

"At two-and-a-half hours, it may be the single most punishing experience I've had in a theater so far this year. ... Let's be clear: this is a terrible film by any standards. ... When you cut from the violent genocide of an entire Indian tribe to a wacky scene with Silver the horse standing on a tree branch and wearing a cowboy hat, it's pretty clear you have no idea what story you're telling or why. ... Someone needs to drag this thing out behind the barn and put a silver bullet in its brain."


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LoveLexi's picture
Submitted by LoveLexi on
So this a article about other people's comments? Is this site so one-sided you wont even mix up the game a bit? No comments about people who may have liked the film? No, of course not. You know how something makes it or not in America? by talk. Thats exactly what this is, people talking that dont want the story out there. Well if you are open-minded enough to read a few paragraphs about how good it was, here you go: To start off, people think this movie was liberal. There was no liberal agenda in this movie. Reid begins a narrow-minded lawyer, one of the government, our corrupt political system. He refuses to carry a gun (which your government doesn’t want you to be able to own) and ends up having to watch his friends and brother die by guns (note: guns are what people make them, bad people+guns = murder/crime, good people+guns = protection/justice. Removing guns from the good, will not remove them from the black market or the hands of the bad – it will only leave the good defenseless) Reid being forced to watch his brother eaten by a freak of nature (after being shot by him and with no self-defense) is the symbolism of a country turning a blind eye to the fact that criminals will be criminals regardless of laws. All laws do is keep the good natured from doing bad, not the other way around. The sad thing is, Reid refusing a gun not even 5 minutes prior lead directly to the fact that he had no chance to protect himself or save the others. Also it was his long time, family friend that sold out the rangers. (Doesn’t this make you think of secret conspiracy? The people you trust may not be trustworthy. Even if they seem un-harmful, like a waddling drunk. As I am sure some people reading this think I am just an anarchist, that our great government is honest and not corrupt. That there is no way in this time and age that such conspiracy could exist. Truth is – I saw the morals in this film. It is one of the first movies lately made for American’s to think of how their country has changed for the worst in the past 100 years. How what our brave men died and fought for has been turned into a country of people afraid of everything. Afraid to speak their mind, afraid of guns, afraid of lead paint, afraid of Chinese poisoning in our food and baby products. What do we do? Instead of pushing for more industrialism in America, manufactures and builders here – which would open up more jobs for people – helping economy- and also generating better quality items – helping to stop so much importing and reliance on over-sea product.) Through the movie Reid grows as a character and begins fighting for the TRUE just cause. Not the one he started out on. He believed he was fighting for justice as a man of the law, but he was only fueling those with money. Those who hid behind publicized figures and paid millions to PR people that make them look good, sound good, and relate their name with donations and just causes – all to hide the real truth. The sad truth. That the people of his county were being taken advantage of. Their fears of the Indians led them to believe they were in danger. The Indians were a scapegoat. Like so many of our politicians try to use, lately finger-pointing between Republicans and Democrats in the White House has been as addictive as planking was a few years ago for teens. By their fear (Roosevelt “the only thing to fear is fear itself”) they were easily led along politically, like votes were for war after 9-11. The innocent Indians being gunned down by the military is a hard scene to portray. And honestly if you are insulted by the joke of the horse after all that death then you should be insulted by our founders. We did that to the Indians, and it was joked about at the time. Men thought killing the Indians would really make this country a better place. As if a nation built on blood is a good idea. This movie used that horse-hat scene to keep the heart on track. It was not saying that dead Indians is funny – no one in their right mind thinks that’s funny. When all is down in the world and you see reality – that money talks – money and PR move mountains and kill innocents – you need a picker-upper. Your brain is over-whelmed (that’s why he sits next to Tonto and tells him he was right all along) Harsh reality makes you need something to switch your mind off a second. To give your heart a chance to do the talking. To ground you again (which is funny that the horse wasn’t grounded – like Reid wasn’t before he saw that slaughter.) Which also leads to the Chaplin-inspired funny part where Reid is blindfolded and Tonto saves him from being gunned down by the military – this is before and leading to the Indian slaughter. The white man blind-folded – turning a blind eye, justice with hands tied, ready to be killed off by the politically blinded soldiers, being saved by an uncooperative, off-kilter native that Reid didn’t even trust. It’s funny – sad and funny. But overall it had political morale meaning, that the authoritative figures you trust may not be worthy, they may have personal gains, private gains and they may be using honest people to hide their greedy deeds. Obviously our reviewers coincidentally failed to see this….(wonder how much they’re paid and who pays them). Now Depp’s Tonto speaking with short words and ill structured sentences was insulting I heard to some. Tonto didn’t speak much English, so he pieced together sentences. It is actually a cool thing that I liked about Depp’s Tonto, this short sentence formatting. Made me think of Yoda in Star Wars, he was the intelligent far-thinker. A visionary, like an oracle almost, leading the Hero to victory with humor. The teacher, instructing one with high hopes and dreams to reality with hard-stated and jumbled facts. “Nature out-of-balance.” “Horse says you are a spirit walker. A man who's been to the other side and returned. A man who cannot be killed in battle.” “There come time, when good men must wear mask.” “Justice is what I seek, Kemosabe.” “Make Trade.” “Bad trade.” They made it simple for the messages to be simple, so kids even could understand. But looks like not only the kids missed out, the adults did too. Now politics being hit on, it was more of a republican movie than you can imagine. They were telling us to grow some and get out there and DO something for ourselves, it was a movie made to change perspectives. It is so sad what our country is coming to. People can't even watch a movie and see multiple points of view. So much has to be explained in Hollywood movies, this one really goes to show that making movies with morals and meanings really have no purpose anymore in America. All we want as a people is to hear and watch showbiz. Things to keep our eyes and hearts away from political causes. Have you noticed? The best films recently (meaning bring in the most dough $$) are end-of-the-world scenarios? How people really need their government and military to protect them. Not much on personal gun owners, like the time of the Lone Ranger. In that time justice was something Americans claimed and fought for. Not anymore, that’s someone else’s job. We just vote and expect people to do things for us. That our vote actually means something besides a number on a piece of paper to them. No wonder all the best Hollywood movies have been so dumb lately. Note: If the reviews says its good, don't waste your money...if they say it is bad, you may as well give it a try. It has more chance to be semi-good than the others. I see no plot holes in The Lone Ranger, only warnings and forebodings of things that will happen in our country if we keep going at the rate we are currently. It was a very good movie, and it gave all these messages while being funny at the same time...phenomenal really. For anyone who has not watched it, please give it a try. If you do not like it, then fine, that is your perspective - to each their own. That is one of the great things about our wonderful country. The choices we make and the freedoms that allow us to say what we think.