My own review of The Lone Ranger wasn’t as clear-cut negative as most of the critics. I thought it was a mixed bag, but most raked it over the coals (it has a 27% rating on Rotten Tomatoes). Recently, one film aficionado has taken a second and third look at the film and decided there might be more there than we first thought:
I watched this uniquely uncompromising popcorn-pleaser three times. By my second viewing, I caught even more references to old Westerns, ranging from the countless scenes set in John Ford’s Monument Valley to the ironic singing of the Christian hymn “Shall We Gather at the River” (as in Sam Peckinpah’s 1969 The Wild Bunch). But what surprised me even more than the homages to, say, the beginning of Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in the West (1966), or the train-chase climax of Buster Keaton’s The General (1926), was the feeling that Verbinski and company were exploring not just the different styles from different decades, but the historical themes of those films.
I noticed a lot of those homages the first viewing, but a string of allusions to other films does not make a film. Find out what else this reviewer thinks we missed in ‘Counterpoint: An Appreciation of The Lone Ranger‘ over on the SFBay Guardian.
Has the reviewer changed your mind?