THE PLOT THUS FAR
Rango is an ordinary chameleon who accidentally winds up in the town of Dirt, a lawless outpost in the Wild West in desperate need of a new sheriff.
WHAT WE THOUGHT
Johnny Depp quickly loses himself into Rango, a character that’s somewhere between his take on Willy Wonka and his turn as Hunter S. Thompson. Depp churns out an outstanding animated protagonist, one who is equal parts boisterous and insecure. As the ultimate outsider in Dirt, our lizard hero has an epiphany: he can reinvent himself out here. He takes up his new name and makes up a fantastical tall tale and then with a pinch of luck, becomes the toast of the town and gets anointed sheriff. All seems swell, but something’s up in the town with regards to the dwindling water supply and the local critters are getting restless. Rango must truly be the hero he masquerades as.
Rango himself upon first meet is absolutely not a hero. Even more interesting though is that his name is not Rango. In fact we have no clue as to what his name is… no doubt an obvious reference to the classic Spaghetti Westerns to which its inspired by and its Eastwood lead ‘Man with No Name’ character. But Rango, despite his lack of name, knows what he wants and Verbinski very clearly makes sure the audience knows too… He wants the chance to be a hero and to one have a story to tell.
“Rango” has the atmosphere of an animated film that was made for adults. It’s very off-balanced in the best kind of way, but a lot of the references and humor are sure to go over a child’s head. Some of the characters in the film talk really fast and while Rango is goofy enough to make the kids laugh, the subject content involving the town of Dirt certainly seems to be aimed towards a more mature sense of humor.