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"The Lone Ranger Returns" (1939)

Billy Batson

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For the few who may have been interested in my conversion of old movie serials to feature-length films, one of my latest projects was to cut down the 1939 serial, The Lone Ranger Rides Again, the second of two serials to bring the Lone Ranger to the silver screen, to a 118-minute feature film version entitled The Lone Ranger Returns. As has been my practice, I'm posting a preview of my fan edit here, and intend to post it to the IFDB after giving anyone interested enough to give it a look a chance to comment or offer suggestions.

If you're a fan of the old Clayton Moore TV series, you might enjoy taking a look at one of the show's forerunners. Western movie star Robert Livingston does fine as the Lone Ranger (his voice being dubbed while wearing the mask), though he won't replace Moore's iconic interpretation of the role and spends too much screen time without his mask posing as a newly added member of a wagon train of settlers heading to New Mexico. Chief Thundercloud's Tonto is a bit closer to the radio incarnation of the character than the portrayal by Jay Silverheels in the TV show, IMO, but he does a good job in his second shot at the role. 

The only known copy of this serial is a 16mm reduction print found in Mexico in the 1970s. The print has Spanish subtitles and looks like it has been run past a belt sander and then stored in a jumbled mass under someone's bed for 30 years. In addition, the DVD version used as the source for this edit looks to be a multi-generation dupe; the night scenes are extremely dark (which is unfortunate, as the opening scenes are set at night--but stick with it, there aren't that many night scenes), one reel is nearly washed out, sound quality is variable, and the picture for most of one significant scene was lost where the film came off the projector track when the film was originally mastered to tape. I've tweaked the contrast and darkness in the washed out reel, tried to even out the sound, and replaced some damaged or missing frames with adjacent frames. Being from an old 16mm film, the focus is a bit soft, and has been made somewhat softer by me panning and scanning each individual shot in order to eliminate the Spanish subtitles. 

Still, the film is watchable and you get what you pay for. It's available for viewing on YouTube:
 

jswert123456

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interesting fact Jay Silverheels was born Harold Smith.
But this sounds like a cool edit.
 

Billy Batson

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Just a reminder that if anyone would like to take a look at my edit, The Lone Ranger Returns, it's still available on YouTube at the above link. It's gathered 164 "likes" (and 17 "dislikes") since I posted it, with nearly 30,000 hits (average watch time, 29 minutes and 48 seconds :( , though 21%, about 6,300, have watched it all the way through).
 
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