Critics pan 'Lone Ranger'

Posted By Kristen Butler, UPI.com   |   July 3, 2013 at 3:52 PM   |   0 comments

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July 3 (UPI) -- It turns out not even Johnny Depp can save "The Lone Ranger," as critics line up to tear the film apart, saying the reimagining of the classic radio show and 1950s TV western is too long, derivative and lacks focus.

The Los Angeles Times said the film is "more like "Pirates on the Plains" than anything else," but "lacks any compelling reason to come on board."

The Wrap says "it feels like a Western made by people working off a checklist of tropes without ever really understanding the genre."

Jerry Bruckheimer and Gore Verbinski have spoken at length about the pains they've taken to address the imbalance that existed between John Reid, the masked Lone Ranger, and his Native American partner, Tonto, in the original program.

But no matter how careful they may have tried to be, critics are still tearing into Depp's portrayal of Reid's Comanche colleague. Others criticize the film for dumbing down the Lone Ranger in order to avoid controversy.

The Village Voice said the film contained "heaps of heavy-duty symbolism that ultimately mean nothing, and juvenile gags that appear to have been written by 10-year-olds rather than for them."

"'The Lone Ranger' is a movie for the whole family ... to avoid," said the San Francisco Chronicle. The Hollywood Reporter conceded the film may be "moderately amusing," but "wobbles and thrashes all over the place."

The film currently has a 23 percent "rotten" rating on the movie rating website RottenTomatoes.com.

"The Lone Ranger" was crushed by "Despicable Me 2" at the box office Tuesday night, $4.7 million to $2 million.

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