Disney has announced that its first-look deal with Jerry Bruckheimer, who's produced such Disney staples as the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' and 'National Treasure' movies, will end when the current contract expires next year. This follows the studio's biggest flop in recent memory, 'The Lone Ranger,' which was projected to lose millions, but Disney assures everyone this decision has nothing to do with that disaster.
When the 'Beverly Hills Cop' TV show failed to get off the ground, word was that Paramount might instead go with a new film installment of the franchise (which had been rumored for a while, with Brett Ratner supposedly set to direct it). The latest rumblings suggest a fourth film might happen, with Eddie Murphy reuniting with producer Jerry Bruckheimer, who was behind the first two movies.
I loved 'Rango,' the last time Johnny Depp and Gore Verbinski offered up a madcap spin on the Western. I basically enjoyed 'John Carter,' last year's Western-infused would-be space epic, which, not coincidentally, was the last time Walt Disney stock holders had to reach for a shaker of Tums.
However, 'The Lone Ranger,' this new spazzed-out Western from Depp, Verbinski and Disney, takes unusual and unlikely measures to ensure that audiences have a miserable time. There are momentary flashes of amusement, but it is jumbled, tone-deaf and uninteresting. If I wanted to be kind I'd call it dull and ephemeral, but there are long stretches that seem to strive to be annoying - almost anti-entertainment. The only thing 'The Lone Ranger' has going for it is a long life as to go-to description how not to make a blockbusters movie - this generation's 'Last Action Hero.'