CinemaDave (cinemadave) wrote,

"The Lone Ranger" is the best 4th of July movie!


When I heard that the politically correct Walt Disney studios would be producing **The Lone Ranger,** I started posting on websites - "They better play "The William Tell Overture stanza March of the Swiss Soldiers." Director Gore Verbinsky did not disappoint, the adopted **Lone Ranger Theme** is heard and it was one of the most rousing moments in cinema since John Williams conducted the **Indiana Jones Theme** thirty two years ago. The audience exploded and clapped in unison.

Inspired by Miguel Cervantes **Don Quixote,** this story is told from the perspective of the trusty sidekick Tonto (Johnny Depp). We meet the tenderfoot lawyer from Harvard, John Reid (Armie Hammer). Unlike the stoic portrayals by Clayton Moore and John Hart, this future **Lone Ranger** is a bit goofy and is slow to adapt to the culture of the wild wild west. Then again, it is important to remember that this story is told from the perspective of Tonto.

While on patrol with his brother, Reid and the Texas Rangers are ambushed by the notorious Butch Cavendish (William Fichtner), who is part cannibal. Unlike pretty boy villains from **The Avengers** and **Star Trek,** Cavendish is one of the most loathsome villains to arrive on the big screen since Bruce Dern shot John Wayne in the back in **The Cowboys.**

Tonto rescues Reid and convinces the neophyte to wear a mask to disguise his identity. As the pair track down the Cavendish Gang, they encounter a railroad baron (Tom Wilkinson) and a prostitute with an ivory leg (Helena Bonham Carter). When a white horse joins the pair, the legend of **The Lone Ranger** begins.

**The Lone Ranger** returns the viewer to the thrilling days of yesteryear. Like a good action serial that inspired **The Rocketeer** and the best**Indiana Jones** movies, Verbinski directs uncomfortable moments that lead to a satisfying conclusion each time. There is also an homage to the Buster Keaton Classic **The General,** featuring the stone faced Tonto riding the rails.

As much at Clayton Moore's **Lone Ranger** encouraged one to be a responsible American citizen, this update features modern cultural concerns. We see corrupt businessmen in collusion with government officials. When bunny rabbits get too aggressive, Tonto states that "nature is out of balance." The purity of **The Lone Ranger's** values might be old fashioned, but are still needed in the twenty first century.

Along with **Star Trek Into Darkness,** **The Lone Ranger** is the best summer blockbuster this summer. There is not a better movie to see this 4th of July weekend.

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