From the team that brought us Pirates of the Caribbean and its sequels comes The Lone Ranger. Which I didn’t see in theatres because I’m really not an action/adventure kind of girl. But … I kind of came around to if not love at least really quite enjoy Disney’s The Lone Ranger. And it has a lot to do with what I learned while watching the special features. For real.
Armie’s Western Road Trip
Like me, Armie Hammer, who plays the Long Ranger, is a road trip man … he loves to go out of his way for incredible vistas and fun adventures. Lucky for him, making this film was basically a months-long road trip through some of the countries most awe-inspiring terrain. Throughout this more personal twist on a making-of bonus, we get to see the harsh conditions the environment presented as well as the many Native American tribes that the cast and crew worked with. They even camped under the stars and cooked over a campfire some nights. The scenery is truly beautiful—and it lends to the authenticity, for sure.
Becoming a Cowboy
During this short, we get to watch as the actors (minus Depp for some reason) go through “cowboy boot camp,” so they can learn to ride horses, rope cattle and shoot guns. It’s interesting to watch them as they come along in their skills, but it could have been even cooler if, instead of so much B-roll, we actually got to follow one actor’s progress from awkward to superstar.
Riding the Rails of the Lone Ranger
Just over 11 minutes long, this featurette takes a close look at the film’s trains, which really are characters in the movie as well as the setting for much of the action. To create the shots they needed, the team built five-miles of railroad track in an oval from scratch. They also built two locomotives from the ground up using specifications from 1860. They shot on the track for six weeks and also moved the trains around on flatbed trucks to shoot additional locomotive footage throughout the country. As a result of all of these machine machinations, they were able to use very little CGI. “You get a different performance when you put an actor on top of a train going 40 miles per hour,” says Jerry Bruckheimer—and I’d imagine he’s right. I was totally captivated by this one.
Usually, I hate deleted scenes because … well, they were probably deleted for a reason. Especially when we’re talking about a film that’s really a smidge too long to begin with. BUT this deleted scene is really cool because it’s an unshot deleted scene—it’s shown through computer animation and watercolor drawings. The script is presented as subtitles, although the sound effects seem fairly well put together. It’s definitely not something I see every day.
This is three-and-a-half minutes of prop guns malfunctioning, Depp bring charmingly weird and Armie Hammer falling on (and off) things. It;s good for a laugh.
I know this isn’t the most beloved film in Disney history but if you haven’t seen The Lone Ranger, you should check it out. Even if it’s just for the amazing scenery and locomotive action. I really dig the locomotive action.
Disclosure: I received a review copy free of charge from Disney. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my own experience.