I came across the teaser for the new Lone Ranger movie last night, but before you watch it, a warning. If you’re hoping to hear the stirring opening bars of Rossini’s William Tell overture – you know, the Lone Ranger‘s theme music – you’ll be disappointed. Because, as we know, any time we get a preview for an action movie set prior to 1900, the music in that trailer will be a snippet of some crappy nu-metal song, because musical anachronism is what the kids love. It’s edgy! And Gore Verbinski – the guy who directed the Pirates of the Caribbean movies – wants to be sure that you know that his take on the legendary masked man and his faithful Native American sidekick will be edgy. Here, for example, is the poster:
I’m getting a real “The Crow Meets Any Japanese Horror Flick from the Late 90s” vibe here. (Edgy.) As we know, Johnny Depp is not playing John Reid – that’s the Lone Ranger’s real name, by the way, and now you too can impress your friends at parties by telling them this. Rather, he’s playing Tonto. He gets top billing over Armie Hammer because he’s Johnny Depp, and also because we’ve really treated Native Americans like shit over the past 250 or so years, and making Tonto appear to be the star will undoubtedly help to heal those wounds. Now, let’s compare Old School Lone Ranger and Tonto to New Edgy Lone Ranger and Tonto. Here is a picture of the original dynamic duo, Clayton Moore and Jay Silverheels:
Here is a picture of Johnny and Armie as Tonto and the Lone Ranger:
We don’t learn a whole lot from this still, but we can assume that the Lone Ranger and Tonto are walking towards the camera in slow motion, while the opening lines and riff from Papa Roach’s “Last Resort” play loudly in the background. Also, walking is edgier than riding horses, as is wearing a black three-piece suit in 114-degree weather. So how does this all come together? Well, here’s the trailer, which features a whole lot of Tom Wilkinson’s voice, a bit of Tonto, and about 1.54 seconds of the Lone Ranger. Also, explosions. And metal guitar. Because there’s always metal guitar.
Nothing particularly amazing here. And yet I have hopes. First, Depp is awesome in everything, and Armie Hammer was really great in The Social Network (he was the Winklevii, which you would know if you clicked the “Lone Ranger movie” hyperlink above). Second, Verbinski knows his way around an action movie, and this could be a great popcorn flick. On the flip side, the original script apparently had werewolves in it. Yep. So who knows. The whole thing could tank, and Armie Hammer could end up bemoaning his fate in a bar with Klinton Spilsbury. (Google him.)