Movie Rating:

This entry has a rating of 2.5

The Lone Ranger

THE LONE RANGER

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

EXT. AMUSEMENT PARK

A LITTLE BOY wanders through a thirties-era carnival, and heads for every kid's favorite attraction, EDUCATIONAL WAXWORKS.

MASON COOK

Geez, this "Noble Savage" waxwork looks awful. It looks more like a white guy covered in offensive stereotype and disturbing old-age CGI.

JOHNNY DEPP

Actually, I'm halfway sure I might possibly be about one-sixty-fourth Cherokee, so, technical racism immunity if I'm right!

MASON COOK

JESUS FUCK, IT LIVES! What the hell are you doing pretending to be a waxwork?

JOHNNY DEPP

Allow me to tell you a story which will explain everything except that. You got two and a half hours to spare?

MASON COOK

Well, it looks like my parents literally don't exist, so - TWO AND A HALF HOURS?! For THE LONE RANGER?! WHY. HOW. FUCK.

JOHNNY DEPP

Yeah, we probably shouldn't have left in so much useless extraneous crap, like - well, like this, to be honest. So quick, worthwhile stuff GO NOW!

INT. TRAIN

New District Attorney ARMIE HAMMER is traveling into town, looking like a one-man boy scout troop.

ARMIE HAMMER

Armie Hammer, am I? Well then, I guess I must be a self-assured but naive young man who's about to learn the hard way how dickish people can be, as there's yet to be any evidence I can play any other kind of role.

BAD GUYS start riding alongside the train and trampling over the roof, and ARMIE goes and checks out the commotion. He finds that in the prison carriage, the guards have been killed and A PRAWN FROM DISTRICT 9 is holding fellow prisoner JOHNNY at gunpoint.

WILLIAM FICHTNER

Shut up! I normally look at least slightly more human than this.

But then JOHNNY grabs a gun from one of the dead guards and points it at WILLIAM.

JOHNNY DEPP

AT LAST! You see, William, I'm a prisoner here on purpose, to get my revenge on YOU!

WILLIAM FICHTNER

What? Until my escape plan that you didn't know about, you were chained up under armed guard. What were you going to do, glare at me to death?

Suddenly ARMIE, being Mr. Goody Two-Shoes, disarms JOHNNY and chains him and WILLIAM back up. But then the BAD GUYS bust in!

ARMIE HAMMER

Oh, right. How the hell did I forget about those guys?

WILLIAM FICHTNER

Quick, boys, unchain me, then chain Armie up in my place, which will take much much longer than just shooting him!

WILLIAM AND HIS GANG get away! JOHNNY breaks himself and ARMIE free, then starts to head after WILLIAM.

ARMIE HAMMER

Wait! This train is now driverless and running out of track, we have to stay here and save everyone!

JOHNNY DEPP

I'll level with you, Armie. My entire character motivation in this movie is to kill a guy I hate. I never show any sign of having any social conscience or interest in the greater good.

ARMIE HAMMER

So why the hell am I the one who's supposed to learn and grow in this movie? My character flaw is "too nice", for crying out loud.

Then ARMIE'S BROTHER JAMES BADGE DALE shows up and saves everyone!

JAMES BADGE DALE

So as usual, while you and your nerdy pacifism bungled everything, I was able to fix it all with my uncomplicated action heroism.

ARMIE HAMMER

There will be at least some point in the movie where being educated and believing in justice are portrayed as something other than comical affectations, right?

JAMES BADGE DALE

Allow me to respond to that by immediately pointing out that the only other intellectual in this movie is obvious villain Tom Wilkinson.

ARMIE HAMMER

In other words, "jocks rule nerds drool". Lovely.

RUTH WILSON

Hey Armie, remember me? James' wife? You and me have always loved each other madly? And it's entirely unclear why I wound up with James instead?

ARMIE and RUTH stare longingly into each other's eyes, each knowing theirs is a love that cannot be.

JAMES BADGE DALE

Well THIS bodes well for me. Armie, come on, we're going after William. I'm deputizing you, the peace-loving, citified District Attorney, as a Texas Ranger, which makes no sense at all.

ARMIE HAMMER

Okay, but I refuse to carry a gun.

JAMES BADGE DALE

Then what the hell use are you? Are you going to make them come quietly by giving them a stern talking-to? Jesus.

JAMES, ARMIE and the RANGERS track WILLIAM and his GANG to the mouth of a narrow CANYON.

JAMES BADGE DALE

Okay, this pretty much looks like Ambush Central. Let's send in a scout, say, the oldest, drunkest, most useless guy we have.

They send in LEON RIPPY, who NEVER EMERGES.

JAMES BADGE DALE

All right, not coming back is our signal for "all clear", let's go!

They head in, only to be met by a volley of gunfire! The GRIZZLED GUY WITH THE BIG MOUSTACHE is KILLED!

W. EARL BROWN

You'll have to be a bit more specific than that.

That was you. You're dead.

W. EARL BROWN

Ah, fuck.

(dies)

The OTHER GRIZZLED MOUSTACHE GUYS all get efficiently mowed down while they FLEE ON HORSEBACK. Meanwhile, ARMIE falls down and flails for a while, and NOTHING BAD HAPPENS TO HIM. JAMES comes back to help him and gets MORTALLY WOUNDED, then ARMIE blubbers over him for a good thirty seconds before finally getting SHOT.

WILLIAM FICHTNER

All right, the upper left shoulder, that's a kill shot if ever I saw one! No need to check that body, no sir.

He gets out his KNIFE and cuts something off of JAMES and EATS IT!

LEON RIPPY

EWWW, did you just-

WILLIAM FICHTNER

That's right, I ate his heart!

LEON RIPPY

Oh, his HEART. Phew. You don't want to know what that weird camera angle made it look like.

The GANG ride away, then JOHNNY shows up and saves-

INT. WAX MUSEUM

MASON COOK

Wait, wait. Armie put you back in jail after your near-escape from the train. How did you get out of jail?

JOHNNY DEPP

(actual line)

(nothing)

MASON COOK

...Wow, that's first-rate storytelling right there. Continue.

EXT. DESERT

ARMIE wakes up and finds himself with JOHNNY and a WHITE HORSE.

ARMIE HAMMER

You saved me? After I kept you from killing William then threw you in jail? Why?

JOHNNY DEPP

The horse told me to.

ARMIE HAMMER

...No, seriously.

JOHNNY DEPP

Seriously. Silver's a magic horse now. Also, he's our comic relief.

ARMIE HAMMER

What. Whose idea was this. This is dumb.

JOHNNY DEPP

(shrugs)

I guess this way if we ever write ourselves into a corner, we can just say "Then Silver does something impossible and saves the day"

ARMIE HAMMER

Deus ex horse, huh? Man. Come on, let's go tell the authorities what happened in the canyon.

JOHNNY DEPP

Stop! First I must inform you that someone planted a gun for William on the train, and Leon was a traitor!

ARMIE HAMMER

Gasp! Someone put a thing in a train carriage, and easily our worst ranger was corrupt? Well then I obviously can't trust anybody!

JOHNNY DEPP

Indeed. I'd say the only reasonable thing to do is become a masked vigilante forever. The mask will somehow convince people you're your own ghost, or your brother's ghost, or whatever put on the mask already.

ARMIE HAMMER

(puts on mask)

All right then, let's go make inquiries at that brothel Leon clumsily dropped into conversation earlier. Seriously, he gave me a flier and everything.

They go meet with one-legged madam HELENA BONHAM CARTER.

JOHNNY DEPP

Oh no - is this another Tim Burton film?! I thought I'd finally - dear God! No escape! NO ESCAPE!

HELENA BONHAM CARTER

Relax, we both appear to be free from that nightmare for now. Now, I also want revenge on William after he ate my leg, which we weirdly won't elaborate upon. I can take him out with my Planet Terror-style leg gun! Let me demonstrate. First, I have to find a place where I can sit down and also prop up my leg... there we go, got to position myself so I'm lined up... now I pull a mechanism to unsheath the barrel, just a second... okay, now I can't exactly aim down the sights from this position, so hopefully my aim is-

JOHNNY DEPP

OH FOR FUCK'S SAKE JUST USE A REGULAR GUN ALREADY.

HELENA BONHAM CARTER

Oh by the way, Armie, the Comanches have gone berserk. They're probably off murdering Ruth right now.

ARMIE HAMMER

Uh oh, gotta go then! See you when you do one unsatisfying thing in the climax!

(leaves)

EXT. RANCH

ARMIE and JOHNNY find that the marauding COMANCHES are actually WILLIAM'S GANG IN HALF-ASSED COMANCHE COSPLAY. The two of them escape from a BURNING BARN when SILVER magically teleports to the roof to save them, then they accidentally SLAPSTICK MURDER WILLIAM'S THUGS.

ARMIE HAMMER

Great, how are we going to find William now? He's abducted Ruth and her son!

JOHNNY DEPP

Don't forget I want revenge on him.

ARMIE HAMMER

I also want revenge because he killed my brother! And Helena wants revenge! And we have to stop him from causing war with the Comanches!

JOHNNY DEPP

Okay, okay, I think we can stop piling on reasons to go after the bad guy, our motivations are getting muddy enough as things are.

They follow one of the GANG'S HORSES towards WILLIAM'S CAMP, but get CAPTURED BY COMANCHES!

ARMIE HAMMER

Hey, it's cool guys, I'm a Spirit Walker hunting a wendigo and various other mystical horseshit.

SAGINAW GRANT

Ha ha, has Johnny been telling you a load of garbage about our mythology? What do you think this is, some kind of culturally insensitive piece of trash where Native Americans are magic?

ARMIE HAMMER

Damn it, Johnny, you mean it was all made up? Including the teleporting horse, carnivorous rabbits and cursed hallucination silver that I have personally witnessed?

JOHNNY DEPP

Okay, so maybe I did go insane this one time. Perhaps it's time you knew my tragic backstory. See, I once showed William where there was a huge lode of silver near our settlement. To keep the place secret, he killed everyone in my tribe.

ARMIE HAMMER

Including you?

JOHNNY DEPP

No, he let me live. Huh, that doesn't make any sense now that I think about it. He even killed my pet crow, somehow, without leaving a mark on its body. That day I went nuts, smeared some crow on my face and vowed revenge!

ARMIE HAMMER

Okay, that explains the black smears on your face I guess. What about the white foundation, though?

JOHNNY DEPP

Well, we do kind of imply the bird sitting on my head is actually not dead after-

ARMIE HAMMER

OKAY NEVER MIND.

SAGINAW GRANT

And now, Armie, we're going to bury you and leave you to die, because your brother said he'd help us but instead he got murdered.

ARMIE HAMMER

That's a TERRIBLE reason to kill somebody.

SAGINAW GRANT

It's better than our reason for killing Johnny too, which is

(shrugs)

They BURY ARMIE AND JOHNNY UP TO THEIR NECKS, then leave.

ARMIE HAMMER

This looks like another job for Lazy Writing Horse!

SILVER pulls ARMIE out of the ground by his TEETH. Then ARMIE forgets his entire characterization and goes to leave JOHNNY to his death.

JOHNNY DEPP

Hold up! You need my directions to the silver mine, where the river begins!

ARMIE HAMMER

"Where the river begins"? Couldn't I just follow the river to its source?

JOHNNY DEPP

Uh... nnnnno.

ARMIE HAMMER

Damn it, come on then.

They go to the MINE, where WILLIAM'S GANG is ordering around some CHINESE MINERS.

ARMIE HAMMER

I know, let's stick some lit dynamite in a mining cart and roll it out of the mine.

JOHNNY DEPP

Won't that kill a lot of innocent workers?

ARMIE HAMMER

Nope! The workers will run away from the cart, the gang will approach it, and then the explosion will incapacitate William while killing his thugs! We kind of need it to go EXACTLY like that, so it better.

JOHNNY DEPP

Good to see you've temporarily suspended your "no murder" rule.

They do this, and CAPTURE WILLIAM. JOHNNY wants to KILL HIM, but ARMIE knocks JOHNNY out and takes WILLIAM to TOM WILKINSON.

TOM WILKINSON

Well done, Armie. Too bad I'M THE MAIN BAD GUY AFTER ALL!

DUMBEST AUDIENCE MEMBER IN THE WORLD

GASP!

TOM sets WILLIAM free, and they hold ARMIE at gunpoint. But then in comes COLONEL BARRY PEPPER.

ARMIE HAMMER

Barry, Tom's evil! He started this war you've been fighting against the Comanches so he could break the treaty and get their land for railroad and silver purposes!

TOM WILKINSON

Ah, but Barry, how do you think people will respond when they find out you've been killing Comanches due to information that was deliberately falsified by somebody else?

BARRY PEPPER

You're right! I will now commit treason because otherwise there's a vague chance that really stupid people will think I'm guilty of treason! Oh, and of course my troops absorb my guilt vicariously, so the good guys can now kill them with impunity.

Instead of KILLING ARMIE they take him back to the MINE to die by FIRING SQUAD. But then JOHNNY frightens a carriageload of soldiers out of the MINE, and that carriage hits ANOTHER CARRIAGE which then rolls right in between ARMIE and the FIRING SQUAD just as they fire!

JOHNNY DEPP

Hooray, my Rube Goldbergesque plan worked, even though I don't know how I was even aware that Armie was in trouble!

COMANCHES ARRIVE and a big BATTLE BEGINS! JOHNNY frees ARMIE!

ARMIE HAMMER

All right, let's kill Tom, William and if we have time Barry!

JOHNNY DEPP

No, at this point we just run away.

ARMIE HAMMER

What? This isn't the climax? But the entire evil scheme has been revealed, and now all the good guys and bad guys have collected in this one spot and a huge battle has started! This movie has been going forever, WHY ISN'T IT ENDING?

ARMIE and JOHNNY flee into the mines. On the surface, Comanches are cut down tragically by the army!

SAGINAW GRANT

(stabbed by Barry)

I die! What brutal drama!

Meanwhile in the mines, ARMIE and JOHNNY run comically away from a DYNAMITE FIREBALL!

JOHNNY DEPP

WOOOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP!

ARMIE HAMMER

We seem to be having a slightly inconsistent tone going on right now.

EXT. TRAIN STATION

There is some kind of CELEBRATION going on to do with the RAILROAD. TOM WILKINSON is in a nearby room talking to the RAILROAD BOARD MEMBERS.

TOM WILKINSON

Just so you know, I've acquired a controlling share in the railroad, which will pretty much make me the most powerful man in the country. I'm making a hostile takeover, starting from when that trainful of silver gets to San Francisco to complete my payment.

STEPHEN ROOT

That train there? The one that we, who for now still control the railroad, can keep where it is forever if we like, thus preventing you from taking over?

TOM WILKINSON

Yes. That one.

STEPHEN ROOT

Is there any reason at all you couldn't have waited until tomorrow to tell us all this?

TOM WILKINSON

Not as far as I can see. Not even for story purposes, since you don't do anything with this information. I guess sometimes a villain's just got to gloat, you know?

But then JOHNNY starts up the TRAIN and starts DRIVING IT AWAY, and ARMIE arrives in full LONE RANGER getup!

TOM WILKINSON

Oh God, not another one. First Batman, then that lousy Green Hornet, now this clown. It's getting so a guy can't blow his nose without helping to create a masked vigilante.

The WILLIAM TELL OVERTURE starts up! This is AWESOME! It's going to be going for the next TEN MINUTES! This is NOT QUITE AS AWESOME. A SOLDIER tries to stop JOHNNY with a GATLING GUN, but ARMIE snags it with his WHIP and turns it on BARRY'S SOLDIERS and then on TOM AND THE BOARD MEMBERS, who duck frantically out of the way of the hail of gunfire!

GUN OPERATOR

OH GOD WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME WHY DO I KEEP TURNING THE CRANK AND FIRING ON MY OWN TEAM?!

JOHNNY speeds off with BARRY aboard, while TOM pursues in another train which also carries WILLIAM, ARMIE and a captive RUTH.

WILLIAM FICHTNER

Stay back, Armie, or I'll throw Ruth off the train!

ARMIE HAMMER

Uh, are you forgetting I have a magic solve-anything horse? Go ahead and throw her off, I'm supremely confident she'll land exactly on Silver's back in a stable upright position.

WILLIAM throws RUTH off the train and she's FINE. WILLIAM and ARMIE go to SHOOT EACH OTHER.

WILLIAM FICHTNER

Oh darn, my gun won't fire!

ARMIE HAMMER

And phooey, I forgot to put bullets in mine!

WILLIAM FICHTNER

Wow, what a ham-handed way of making us get into a big fistfi-

ARMIE punches WILLIAM once then leaps down and joins RUTH.

RUTH WILSON

My hero! Let me kiss you, less than a day after I found out for sure that my husband is dead!

All kind of TRAIN ACTION happens. JOHNNY switches to the PURSUING TRAIN, and TOM switches to the SILVER TRAIN, and JOHNNY switches back to the SILVER TRAIN and ARMIE gets back on the PURSUING TRAIN and the trains SWITCH TRACKS and UNCOUPLE CARS and in the end WHO THE HELL IS WHERE AND WHAT IS GOING ON, HELP ME OUT HERE.

JOHNNY DEPP

Armie, we messed up! Somehow I'm now fighting your nemesis Tom while you're fighting my nemesis William! We need to do some more train switcheroos and-

ARMIE HAMMER

Like HELL! Let's leave it like this, it's FINE.

ARMIE lets WILLIAM and BARRY get killed by train crash. JOHNNY is a COPYCAT and lets TOM also get killed by train crash.

EXT. TRAIN STATION

The BOARD MEMBERS are honoring ARMIE for his heroism.

STEPHEN ROOT

You have our eternal gratitude for blowing up our bridge, crashing our trains and pointing a Gatling Gun at us while it was firing.

ARMIE HAMMER

You're welcome. But my work is not done. I have learned the valuable lesson that the system is too corrupt to work within, and violence is the only effective means of doing anything. So let's all go fashion some pipe bombs! DEATH TO THE ARISTOS!

(rides into the sunset)

NOBODY IN THE ENTIRE MOVIE

Who was that masked man?

END.