Saturday, March 5, 2011

RANGO Missed the Mark

We are big Johnny Depp and Pirates of the Caribbean fans, so when the previews of RANGO, the Gore Verbinski / Nickelodeon film started last fall, we were anxiously awaiting its release!  This past Friday night we went to the movies expecting to see a smartly written, masterfully directed, fun, CGI animated film that the whole family would enjoy.  
We were disappointed on most accounts.
The animation was great!  In fact, if you are an animation aficionado, you will appreciate the level of expertise displayed in the film’s many action-packed scenes. There's a great cameo by Clint Eastwood, who was momentarily reprising his The Man with No Name character.  This scene was so well animated, I had to remind myself it was a toon I was seeing, and not the actor himself!  

Now, if you’re more like me, and story just happens to be king, then you may walk away a little disappointed.
The first thing I need to address is that this is by no means a kid’s movie.  There are curse words that alone make it inappropriate.  But even if you were to dub out the “h” and “d” words (to include one scene where a character actually says, “Go to h...”) the violence and adult situational humor was a bit over the top for the youngsters under 10.  
To sum up the plot is one sentence, I would say that it’s a story about a lizard who goes on an adventure to find his true self.  The story doesn’t arc until way late in the process, so I found myself checking my watch at least three times, thinking he would never find a resolution.  Of course, he does find his true self--his destiny-- and saves the day.  Think the Odyssey-meets a spaghetti western-meets The Big Lebowski, cast entirely with desert creatures.  Good, but not good for the WHOLE family.

The mariachi owls were pretty awesome!  They followed Rango's story as Mexican minstrels, and would add the right dose of humor in perfect intervals.  A decent soundtrack possibility if you are so inclined.  
I would not recommend this film for young kids.    


  1. Thanks for the review....couldn't tell either way by the previews.


  2. Had the same feeling on the soundtrack.