Like the once-vilified Native American, given recompense for years of shabby treatment by having Johnny Depp play him, the passage of time shall put a better, more marketable face on The Lone Ranger. So says producer Jerry Bruckheimer, who tells Vulture that history will eventually vindicate the film that’s proven such an unpopular, costly failure, much as it will George W. Bush’s decision to invade Iraq. “It reminds me of a critic who called Flashdance a 'toxic dump,’” Bruckheimer said, referencing the 1983 movie he produced with the late Don Simpson. “Ten years later [the critic] said, 'This is really a good movie. I missed it.' I think [Lone Ranger] is going to be looked back on as a brave, wonderful film” by future, starving audiences, who will admire its audacity in wasting so much money on building trains you can’t even eat.
Of course, Flashdance was an immediate surprise success despite its critical savaging, becoming one of the three top-grossing films of its year, and extending its reach into music and fashion. Meanwhile, The Lone Ranger has been called one of the year’s biggest bombs and has yet to inspire a single dance track or bird hat. But Bruckheimer doesn’t ascribe weight to reviews, particularly when they lack continental sophistication: “You always want to get good reviews, but you know, it's reversed in Europe. It's 70 percent good reviews and 30 percent mixed there,” Bruckheimer says, noting that The Lone Ranger is already being lauded by two or three overseas critics, at least, with Europe first to embrace and forgive The Lone Ranger the way they did, say, Roman Polanski. Perhaps one day our children will similarly recognize the bravery in spending $225 million on turning an old established franchise into another Pirates Of The Caribbean movie but with cowboys.