The Lone Ranger

Confessions of a Serial Movie-Killer

I have a confession to make. This is tough, but it’s important for me to be truthful about it to my colleagues, my family, my readers… and most of all, myself. Here goes: I am a serial killer.

Whew. Feels good to get that off my chest.

I didn’t realize it, of course. I guess when you’re truly sick, you don’t know; it all seems normal to you. I was just going through my daily life, doing my job, caring for my loved ones, engaging in what seemed to me a perfectly average, everyday routine. But then I saw this video of Lone Ranger stars Jonny Depp and Armie Hammer and producer Jerry Bruckheimer talking about what I, and people like me, had done to their precious baby: … Read More

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Johnny Depp Must Be Stopped

Lest you think its fate wasn’t already sealed by its widely reported first weekend belly flop, The Lone Ranger was crushed last weekend, landing in fifth place with a measly $11 million. Those are some pretty miserable numbers for the passion project of a major movie star like Johnny Depp, but if you’d like to know exactly how bad things are going for Mr. Depp, consider this: Deadline is reporting that he’s in final talks to return as the Mad Hatter in the sequel to Disney’s horrifying yet inexplicably successful 2010 version of Alice in Wonderland. This is in addition to his already announced fifth go-round as Captain Jack Sparrow in yet another Pirates of the Caribbean movie. You guys, Johnny Depp must be stopped. … Read More

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10 Inexplicably Overlong Movies

Disney’s big-budget adaptation of The Lone Ranger bit the big one at the box office last weekend, taking in less than $50 million and ensuring a healthy loss for movie that cost at least five times that. Plenty of theories for its tanking have been bandied about, here and elsewhere: Depp’s star is falling, young audiences are unfamiliar with the character, Westerns are always a hard sell. But here’s one more thought: maybe it’s because word got around that The Lone Ranger ran a befuddlingly inflated 149 minutes, and viewers couldn’t imagine sitting through a summer action movie that was that goddamn long. But it’s not like The Lone Ranger is the sole offender — especially in recent years, more and more filmmakers are pushing their luck with bloated running times that test viewers’ patience and indicate producers and editors falling down on the… Read More

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3 Lessons Hollywood Should Learn from This Summer’s 3 Big-Budget Bombs

After a protracted production period, a series of cancellations and restarts, and a lengthy conversation over racism and representation, Disney’s big-budget, big-screen adaptation of The Lone Ranger landed in theaters over the holiday weekend, and the results weren’t pretty. Its five-day domestic gross was a mere $48.9 million (with just under $30 million more coming in from foreign markets), meaning that the Mouse House is going to take a real bath on the picture — its budget was somewhere in the neighborhood of $250 million, and that’s before its substantial marketing and distribution costs. As The Hollywood Reporter notes, that means we’re only halfway into summer movie season, but we’ve already seen three very high-profile belly flops. What’s going wrong? … Read More

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White Actors’ Most Egregious Portrayals of People of Color

The new reboot of the classic radio serial and television Western The Lone Ranger is out today, and much of the conversation has centered on the casting of Caucasian (with some Indian somewhere in his background — promise!) actor Johnny Depp in the role of Native American sidekick/stereotype Tonto. Unfortunately, it’s just the latest example of a white actor playing a character of color — though Depp can take some comfort in the fact that his portrayal isn’t nearly as offensive as some of those that came before him. … Read More

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With or Without Johnny Depp as Tonto, ‘The Lone Ranger’ Was Too Racist to Reboot

The important question, when you get right down to it, is why the hell they wanted to make The Lone Ranger in the first place. It’s not like anyone was clamoring for it, or that there’s some kind of built-in brand recognition. This is a character still best known from a ‘30s radio serial and a ‘50s television show (his most recent big-screen incarnation, 1981’s The Legend of the Lone Ranger, was a notorious boondoggle), so the audience that might be interested is, it seems, just about the right age to have no desire whatsoever to sit through a two-and-a-half-hour Johnny Depp summer blockbuster. It’s not like rebooting the Superman or Spider-Man franchise, perpetual favorites of lucrative young moviegoers and fanboys. But more than that, those characters don’t come with any of the loaded racial iconography that a 2013 film adaptation must contend with. The fumbling of that issue isn’t the sole undoing of Gore Verbinski’s new movie — there’s plenty of other flaws — but it sure doesn’t help. … Read More

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Johnny Depp’s Most Over-the-Top Performances, Ranked From Best to Worst

Johnny Depp is an actor of skill and versatility, but when you break it down, most of his performances fall into one of two categories: Naturalistic Johnny and Over-The-Top Depp. In the former category, you have such quiet, finely tuned, nuanced turns as Donnie Brasco, Finding Neverland, Public Enemies, Blow, and Dead Man. And in the latter, you have the barnburners, the swing-for-the-fences stuff — wild performances that occasionally pay off, but often result in overworked indulgence. We’ll all find out Wednesday which camp The Lone Ranger falls into, but in the meantime, his most out-there work is ranked for you, from best to worst, after the jump. … Read More

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Flavorwire’s Endearingly Exhaustive 2013 Summer Movie Preview

It’s the first weekend in May, so you know what that means: there’s a new Marvel movie in theaters, and the summer movie season has officially begun. It’s a tricky minefield to navigate, rife with sequels and reboots and sequels and adaptations and sequels, but Flavorwire is here to help: our summer movie guide takes you through the entire season, month by month, spotlighting the films that might be worth seeing (Might! Maybe! No promises!) and delicately averting your eyes from the certain dogs. Take a deep breath and put on your 3D glasses; here we… Read More

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