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Published on March 4th, 2011 | by simeon

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Rango

Y’all want to know what Rango is about? Have a seat by the camp fire and I’ll tell ya. The chameleon that would one day be known as Rango (voiced by Johnny Depp) begins the movie as a pet, traveling across the desert with a human family in their SUV. However, fate or perhaps the Spirit of the West (voiced by Timothy Olyphant) has other plans for him. Soon he is separated from his human family and he meets a wise armadillo named Roadkill (voiced by Alfred Molina) who tells him about the Spirit of the West, fate and, more importantly to him, where to find water.

Fans of Johnny Depp will recognize an amazing reference, tribute if you will, to the 1998 movie Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas that starred the actor. On his way to the nearest town where he can get some water, he meets one of the locals, a young lady lizard named Beans (voiced by Isla Fisher) who offers him a ride to the edge of town, a town aptly named Dirt. As he tries to fit in with the locals he realizes that he can reinvent himself here, so he gives himself the name Rango but thanks to a lie that he told to the guys in the saloon he soon finds himself in a showdown with one of the meanest gangs in town. Through a very funny turn of events he not only survives but becomes the town hero. In honor of his victory the Mayor (voiced by Ned Beatty) offers him the job of sheriff which Rango gladly accepts.

Soon after, the limited water supply in town disappears and it is up to Rango (along with some quirky townfolk) to solve the mystery and save Dirt. Along his journey, Rango eventually comes to a point where he must decide what kind of lizard he wants to be, a hero of the people or a person who just plays one. Will he make the right choices? Will he find the water? Will he save the town? See the movie to find out the answers to these questions and more.

I have seen many family movies that were very entertaining for the kids but extremely boring for the adults. Luckily Rangois not one of those movies. Not only does the movie have a very talented voice cast, it also has entertaining action that enhances the story instead of over-powering or taking away from it. The visuals were so realistic that at times I almost forgot it was an animated film and it has plenty of humor to make the audience laugh, regardless of age.

At the end of the movie as we all were heading towards the exit I overhead a person saying to their friends how the movie actually felt like the old westerns that they had watched growing up and I found myself agreeing. The story unfolded with a natural flow, beautiful scenery and wild west action that kept the audience engaged from start to finish.

4 out of 5 Pillbugs (see the movie to get the reference)


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