I have to be honest, I was a bit hesitant to watch and review “The Lone Ranger.” I heard so many bad things about the movie and I just didn’t want to believe that Johnny Depp made a bad movie. Boy am I glad I ignored all the critics and watched the movie to decide for myself. My husband and I loved the movie. I mean it was a Jerry Bruckheimer film, so how could it possibly be anything but great?
I grew up watching The Lone Ranger reruns in black and white with my grandpa, so I was familiar with the story, but didn’t exactly know how the story started, that is, until I watched the movie and then did my research. Disney did a really good job at keeping the storyline similar to the original Lone Ranger it seems, but of course, spiced it up with the inclusion of the comedic Johnny Depp and the action packed stunts and special effects that a Jerry Bruckheimer film always includes.
I wasn’t too familiar with Armie Hammer’s previous work, but he made for an excellent “Lone Ranger” character. I only wish that Johnny Depp had a more active role in the movie. He had very little speaking lines in comparison to Hammer, but if you like him in Pirates of the Caribbean, you’ll find that he takes on a similar persona in this movie.
Now on to the bonus features that are included in the Blu-Ray + DVD version of the movie. I’m not someone who usually sits there and watches all the bonus content, as it’s sometimes dull, but I found myself enjoying the bonus content included in The Lone Ranger. I was a bit disappointed that Depp only contributed a few words to the bonus content, but that aside, you really should watch the bonus content, especially if you’re a history buff like myself or like seeing the beauty of the US.
- Armies’s Western Road Trip – This was my favorite bonus feature of any movie I’ve ever seen and I almost enjoyed it more than the movie itself! Hammer takes you on a tour of the scenic locations the production shot in and boy is the US beautiful – makes me want to give up a trip to WDW next year just to visit the American Southwest. But that’s not why I enjoyed this part so much. You see, I’m a member of a Native American tribe here in North Carolina and I minored in American Indian Studies at UNC-CH, so I’m very knowledgeable about Native Americans and always pay close attention to how movies portray us as a people. I honestly had tears in my eyes as I watched this segment. I love that Armie embraced the tribal leaders and people he encountered on his filming journey and I love that he found himself wanting to spend more time with them to experience their culture and learn more about the tribe. I also love the fact that my fellow Native Americans embraced the cast and crew, taught them more about our people and treated them like family during the filming. The movie did not portray Native Americans as savages (as a lot of movies have in the past), but rather showed that we are a kind people who had our world turned upside down by things like westward expansion. The producers even took the time to allow the Comanche 2 months to build the teepees used in the movie so that they would be as historically accurate as possible – now that is a sign of respect and that’s why I love this movie – they allowed respect to take precedent over money and time. So please don’t miss watching this bonus content to see what really went into making this film. And kudos to the entire crew! And as side note, my husband is not Native American and he loved the movie as well and thought it portrayed things accurately.
- Blooper Reel – Bloopers are always fun to watch and this was no different. Seriously, be sure to watch these! They’re hilarious.
- Deleted Scene – There were only two that were included, so not a lot to see, but it’s neat to see what didn’t make it into the movie. I can see why the first one didn’t…
- Riding The Rails of The Lone Ranger – I find it fascinating to see how they actually created the train and train chase scenes in the movie. For example, they built a five mile oval track and they hand-built the engine cars used in the movie, outfitting them with different ‘personalities.’ You’ll often find that they use miniature models in many movies, so it was nice to see that they actually built full-size train cars from scratch.
- Becoming a Cowboy – A lot of the actors did their own stunts (Hammer included) and went through extra training to learn how to shoot a gun properly, ride horses or lasso objects for example – training that took place in their very own “Cowboy Boot Camp.” I love that they went through all this to make it seem more realistic and to learn what it really was like back in the Old West days.
The movie releases on Tuesday, December 17th, so be sure to go pick up your copy!
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