"The Lone Ranger" was a critical and commercial failure for Johnny Depp, Jerry Bruckheimer and Walt Disney Pictures, but perhaps they can take solace in the fact that the film made Quentin Tarantino's list of 2013's best films so far.
While the eclectic collection of movies shouldn't be a surprise to anyone familiar with the the 50-year-old director's oeuvre or his inspiration, it does seem strange that "The Lone Ranger" would make anyone's list this year at all. But Tarantino put it at No. 9, just above "This Is The End" and below "Kick Ass 2" and "Gravity."
Disney's adaptation of the classic western garnered 31 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, with Rolling Stone's Peter Travers noting, "Your expectations of how bad 'The Lone Ranger' is can't trump the reality."
Here's Tarantino's list:
1. "Afternoon Delight" 2. "Before Midnight" 3. "Blue Jasmine" 4. "The Conjuring" 5. "Drinking Buddies" 6. "Frances Ha" 7. "Gravity" 8. "Kick Ass 2" 9. "The Lone Ranger" 10. "This Is The End"
Asked to explain his choices, the famed auteur told France's "Les Inrockuptibles" (via IndieWire) that "the first forty-five minutes [of 'The Lone Ranger'] are excellent."
"The next forty-five minutes are a little soporific," he added. "It was a bad idea to split the bad guys in two groups; it takes hours to explain and nobody cares. Then comes the train scene -- incredible! When I saw it, I kept thinking, 'What, that’s the film that everybody says is crap? Seriously?'"
But Tarantino did have one problem with the movie.
I like Tonto’s backstory -- the idea that his tribe got slaughtered because of him; that’s a real comic-book thing. But the slaughter of the tribe, by gunfire, from the cavalry, it left a bitter taste in my mouth. The Indians have really been victims of a genocide. So slaughtering them again in an entertaining movie, Buster Keaton style… That ruined the fun a bit for me. I simply found it…ugly.