by Marcus at the Movies
12:54 PM AKST, March 11, 2011
This week Marcus took in “Rango,” a PG-rated cartoon Western about a lizard voiced by Johnny Depp. He suggests doing some research before sending your kids to see it.
“Rango” starts out with pratfalls resembling those of Scrat the squirrel in the “Ice Age” movies -- but this is no “Ice Age.”
“Welcome, amigo, to the land without end -- the desert and death are the closest of friends.”
Rango, whose crazy-Johnny-Depp personality is much like his infamous Captain Jack Sparrow in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films, is not the sharpest thorn in the cactus. He finds himself trying to survive in his natural desert habitat with a great deal of difficulty. Eventually the scrawny weakling blows into town like a tumbling tumbleweed.
The movie is clever and funny, but I'm not so sure it's directed at kids. I talked to two kids ages 7 and 8 who said they liked it, but they weren't too convincing. Also, the villain Rattlesnake Jake was scary. Another villain is the mayor, who holds the town hostage by cutting off the water supply.
Rango soon gets over his stranger-in-town shyness, makes up hero stories about himself and gets appointed sheriff.
“You're funny-lookin’ too.”
“That's a funny-lookin’shirt.”
“That's a funny-lookin’ dress.”
“You've got funny-lookin’ eyes.”
“You've got a funny-lookin’ face.”
He’s not exactly a ladies’ man right off the bat, but Rango's working on it.
“You ain't from around here, are you?”
“I'm still workin' on it.”
I'm still working on where this movie wanted to go. It certainly covered a lot of sand, comparing Rango to Clint Hastwood's “High Plains Drifter” character, which was actually pretty funny.
I liked the film but I think it's geared more for adults than for kids. One thing's for sure: it will make you thirsty, so be sure to hydrate with that popcorn.
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