Full disclosure: I have not seen The Lone Ranger. Between poor word of mouth, poor reviews and a general sense of not caring, I never got around to actually going to see the film. I don’t particularly wish it or any of its stars ill, though. But when the producer, director and stars of The Lone Ranger come out blaming film critics for the film’s poor box office returns, I get a little annoyed.
Yahoo! Movies UK & Ireland have put together a compendium interview with producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Gore Verbinski, and stars Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer, in which all four bemoan the unwarranted attacks The Lone Ranger received from critics. This, they claim, resulted in the film’s demise at the box office. Hammer goes so far as to say that critics were ‘gunning’ for the film way back when it was shut down for the first time, while Depp claims that he never thought it was intended to be a big blockbuster in the first place. But really, the fault belongs solely to the critics, who obviously hate The Lone Ranger and everything it stands for, whatever that is.
Granted that the four were kind of forced to respond when the interviewer asked them the question, and granted also that they could not very well say that the movie was bad, still there’s something so disgustingly disingenuous about all this. Hammer more or less accuses film critics of hating the film from the beginning, while Verbinski shakes his finger at the entire critical establishment for ruining a good movie. I love it when filmmakers tell everyone that they’re wrong about a film.
Given that the Hollywood establishment has long claimed that critics have no power whatsoever, it’s nice to be informed that actually we have ALL the power. We can make or break a movie with a mere waving of our critical wands. We are gods! Kneel before us, Disney, and tremble!
This is really just another attempt to save face. Bruckheimer already went on record saying that the public is going to be sorry that we didn’t recognize the real greatness of The Lone Ranger but the fact is, the film did not do well. People did not go to see it in the numbers necessary to justify its budget. That’s it. Sorry, boys. This one is all on you.
You can check out the interview with Bruckheimer et al below. Was The Lone Ranger gunned down by critical vigilantes? Let us know what you think in the comments.