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THE LONE RANGER

Disney’s The Lone Ranger rides into cinemas everywhere this weekend bringing a updated take on the classic TV show masked avenger to modern audiences. The film is a success and a failure to varying degrees. How much you feel of one or the other probably depends on your ability to just let go and have a good time. Although dark at times, the film isn’t meant to be taken too seriously and certainly pokes fun at some of the conventions we expect in a Lone Ranger story. Once you figure out who the villain is, and he reveals himself fairly early on, the pieces fall into place and the rest of the film is a can be enjoyed for what it is – well produced Hollywood fun.

Like Johnny Depp, I grew up watching reruns of the classic TV show edition of The Lone Ranger. The villains were inevitably corrupt businessmen and politicians or the standard mustache twirling dreamer up of evil plots. Tonto did his best to keep the outlaw lawman John Reid out of trouble and often swooped in for a well timed attack to save the masked avenger’s life. It was inspiring stuff to an 8 year old.

Sadly, I can’t recommend today’s 8-year olds watch this new edition of The Lone Ranger. The PG-13 rating is to be taken seriously for both violent scenes and fairly heavy subject matter.

Frankly, I don’t get why Disney is marketing The Lone Ranger to young kids with Halloween costumes, action figures, and the like. Was the part about cutting out and eating the still beating heart of one of the heroes not in the script when merchandise got their hands on it?

On the other hand, I recent sat through World War Z, a fairly graphic and bloody zombie attack movie, with a young kid right in front of me. He suffered no ill effect and was even suggesting dinner options on the way out of the theater (he must have had an iron stomach to go with his tolerance for horror and gore). But I digress.

THE LONE RANGER

Ostensibly about the journey John Reid takes to become The Lone Ranger, the movie actually dedicates more pages of the script to Tonto’s backstory. It makes sense since a large portion of the plot is driven by elements in Tonto’s life. The two start off as adversaries, but by the end of the film are ready to work together as a team to right the wrongs and bring the bad guys to justice.

bedknobs

There are few of my favorite childhood movies that hold as special a place as BedKnobs And Broomsticks. Although it was produced after Walt Disney’s death, it continued the Mary Poppins tradition of combining live action with animation, brought on wonderful actors like Angela Lansbury and David Tomlinson, and was chockful of musical tunes to boot. What more could a budding Disney fan want?

How about the new Enchanted Musical Edition DVD? It’s restored and remastered and ready to occupy that empty spot on your shelf.

We have the Sherman Brothers to thank for the songs for the film, including The Age of Not Believing, Portobello Road, and The Beautiful Briny Sea. If that strikes your memory bone, then you’ll want to make sure you watch the best special feature — Music Magic: The Sherman Brothers. Inside Angela Lansbury narrates the history of the development of the songs and you’ll enjoy a rare listen at a song never before heard.

Also knew is the “Wizard of Special Effects” feature that walks viewers through the special effects of the movie and compares them with Disney’s current wizard TV show, The Wizards of Waverly Place.

Bedknobs and Broomsticks is a must have for any Disney fan. The Enchanted Musical Edition DVD captures the family entertainment value you expect from the team at Walt Disney Pictures.

More details of the DVD below the jump: