Rango lassoes in a mere two stars
by Nathan Orians
Mar 11, 2011 | 2943 views | 0 0 comments | 42 42 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The first thing that needs to be made clear about “Rango” is that it isn’t a children’s movie. It’s an animated film for adults and young adults. “Rango” received a PG rating but I think that the violence and adult humor would have made a PG-13 rating more appropriate.

The movie follows a chameleon that goes by the name of Rango, voiced by Johnny Depp, on his adventures. At the beginning of the film we witness Rango being thrown from his captive environment into the wild.

The anthropomorphic Rango enters a version of the Wild West in the dessert outside of Los Vegas. Shortly after reaching the town of Dirt, run by a very old turtle, Rango becomes sheriff. Fighting hawks, gun toting lizards, bank-robbers, dive-bombing bats ridden by crazed beasts, snakes with machine gun tails, and new civilization Rango works to find an answer to the town’s water problem.

“Rango” is a pretty good movie that had me in stitches, with moments like the scene where Rango meets “The Spirit of the West,” voice by Timothy Olyphant. What a great shout out to Clint Eastwoods’ role in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.”

My personal favorite “cameo” is a brief scene where Rango ends up on the windshield of Hunter S Thompson’s red convertible. Depp, of course, played Thompson in the classic “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.”

“Rango” is a fun movie but I can’t stress enough that it isn’t a film for kids. If your child is an animal lover, even the beautifully animated scenes of desert life won’t make up for the violence.

My big point of contention with the movie was the character of “Wounded Bird.” Although most of the western and pop-culture references made the film fun and interesting the stereotypical Native American character is one better left behind. The “stoic native” is not funny, and it’s a character that has been played out, it’s racist, and it needs to be laid to rest.

Rating: (2/5)

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