Rango (Gore Verbinski) 2011

Now I’ve said before that I don’t really get into animated movies as much as I used to. I still get requests to see Toy Story 3. It’s just most of the time, even the best of kids movies are still, well, kids movies. So I guess it means something when I find an animated movie I really like (or it doesn’t…whatever).

Rango is about a lizard played by Johnny Depp who is accidentally removed from his bowl on a family vacation. He wanders into a town fully of creepy looking critters and decides since no one knows who he really is, that he should adopt a tougher alter ego. Through his lies and various shenanigans, the townspeople believe him and make him Sheriff Rango. Rango gets caught up in a plot by a corrupt politician who later sends for desperadoes to eliminate Rango.

I like Rango because it is a send up/homage to the spaghetti westerns of old. You can see it hits all the genre notes as far as the characters, the plots, and the overall vibe of it. But like any good comedy they take those conventions and turn them slightly for laughs. The art style is what really sells it and makes it unique. These are characters you are not going to see in your typical Pixar or Disney movie. These animals/reptiles/whatever can be both dark and funny given the situations they are put in. I particularly loved a chase scene where a wagon is being chased by moles on roadrunners and on dive bombing bats.

Most of the voice acting is very good with the obvious note of Johnny Depp. He does a great job in the role of playing the cowardly thespian but also playing the role of tough guy. He really sells the performance and in many other hands it could have been an annoying character. There are some other cast members that are very good including Bill Nighy, Ned Beatty, Abigail Breslin, Ray Winstone, and Timothy Olyphant.

The story, even though it plays on familiar story tropes, does not ever lag for me. This is probably because it is not so much about the story as the comedy that comes from those tropes. Just when things do slow down, there are some really inventive action scenes to spice things up. I’m sorry, I can’t come up with too many things to rant on. I’m sure if I spent enough time I can come up with some things I didn’t like and some scenes that could be trimmed. But these would be minor gripes in what is overall a great animated movie. I highly recommend it.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: