Quentin Tarantino surprised many earlier this week when he released a list of his favorite movies of the year and on that list, along with Oscar frontrunners like 'Gravity' and 'Blue Jasmine,' was the Razzie frontrunner 'The Lone Ranger.' As we all wondered aloud, "How could this be?," Mr. Tarantino has arrived, as if on cue, to explain exactly how it be, defending his choice of 'The Lone Ranger' as one of the best movies of 2013.
The Lone Ranger
He's arguably one of the best filmmakers working today. He's also (arguably) one of the best film critics in his spare time. So, when Quentin Tarantino shares his list for the best movies of any particular time period, we take notice.
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.
There was definitely something apocalyptic about the 2013 summer movie season, and we’re not just talking about the movies themselves.
While major releases, like ‘This Is the End,’ ‘Oblivion,’ ‘Pacific Rim‘ and ‘Elysium,’ dealt with the end of the world, Hollywood appeared to be on the verge of collapse out in the real world. Films that looked like surefire hits flopped; surefire disasters proved to be more disastrous than everyone predicted; the handful of films without numbers in their titles stumbled; and, from the sidelines, Steven Spielberg and George Lucas smirked, shrugged and predicted the end of the moviegoing experience as we know it.
So, what exactly happened here? More importantly, what does this mean for the future of studio filmmaking? It’s easy to imagine Hollywood looking at what happened this summer and learning plenty of lessons; but, maybe, not always the right ones.
Which would you expect to win the Fourth of July weekend: the Disney-produced, Johnny Depp-starring revival of an iconic American hero or the sequel to a French-made, Steve Carell-starring animated movie about a lovable supervillain? Well, it looks like American audiences simply aren't interested in westerns, even the uber-expensive ones starring Captain Jack Sparrow with a bird on his head. 'Despicable Me 2' destroyed 'The Lone Ranger' over the holiday weekend. Like, totally wrecked it. Mercilessly.
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.'
After plenty of trailers and posters, the first official 'The Lone Ranger' clip has arrived and it gives us a taste of what Disney's epic action western will feel like. If you guessed that it would feel a lot like the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' films...you're right. Between director Gore Verbsinki's familiar style and the mere presence of Johnny Depp, this clip looks very much like something written for a 'Pirates' film retconned for the Old West.