Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Directed by Gore Verbinski 

My Rating:  ★★★★☆

Rated PG for crude humor, language, action, and smoking.

Okay, I am aware this movie has been in theaters for almost two months, but when you’re a mom of three you just have to get to things when you can J! 

In Rango (March 2011), Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski teams up once again with the ever-engaging Johnny Depp to create another theatrical masterpiece.  Paying tribute to classic favorites such as Don Quixote and Chinatown with a bit of Blazing Saddles tossed in, this film has a little something for everyone to love.  The stunning animation (finally something that is NOT in 3-D!) is courtesy of Industrial Light & Magic and is their first full-length animation venture. 

A pet chameleon (Johnny Depp) who fancies himself as quite the thespian is accidentally tossed from his owner’s car in the middle of the Mojave Desert.  After narrowly escaping becoming a hawk’s afternoon snack, he meets a desert iguana, Beans (Isla Fischer), who takes him to the Old West town of Dirt where the water reserves are running dangerously and suspiciously low.  The once make-believe hero suddenly finds the opportunity to reinvent himself as a true hero by becoming Rango, a tough wanderer and the newest sheriff of Dirt.  Along the way he faces foes such as the gang of moles and Rattlesnake Jake (Bill Nighy). 

Rango is not just a charming, entertaining animated flick.  It carries the viewer along Rango’s existential journey to self-discovery and enlightenment.  There is also a strong overtone of the timeless issue of Socialism—the fine line between individual and society.  As usual, the desired balance is corrupted largely by the pursuit of personal wealth and power.  Romance also plays a part in the story, although it is kept refreshingly subtle throughout. 

This film is certainly a clever, satirical, and beautifully animated venture designed for adults and children alike.  I truly believe this is simply a movie-lover’s film, regardless of age.  The quirky dialogue holds the majority of the humor, and honestly that part is better suited for a more mature (and knowledgeable) audience.  Still, my almost-six-year-old was completely engrossed, and when I wasn’t wrangling the two-year-old, I was too!  The only reason I could not give it five stars was because some of the humor and language was not exactly suitable for young children.

I definitely recommend getting out and catching Rango while it is still in theaters, or at the very least, be sure to purchase or rent it when it is available on Blu-ray and DVD (date unknown).