[pullquote cite=”” type=”left, right”][amazon text=Amazon&template=carousel&chan=That Film Guy&asin=B005KS35I6][/pullquote] Rango is an animated film that reunites Johnny Depp and director Gore Verbinski for the first time since the end of the original Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy. The action revolves around the titular Rango (Depp), a chameleon who finds himself lost in the Mojave Desert after his terrarium falls out of his owner’s car. He finds his way to the town of Dirt where a series of lucky events find him becoming the sherriff and the one responsible for finding the town’s missing water reserve.
The animation is a joy to behold. ILM (the brains behind the Star Wars special effects) have done a masterful job in creating a truly unique style to the whole film and you can’t help but stare at the beauty of it all. It is so good in fact, that you sometimes get distracted from the main action but the events happening in the background. Luckily the characters are there to drag you right back, it’s a shame that some are a little too complex and philosophical for younger viewers to truly appreciate.
The voice-casting is pitch-perfect with supporting characters Bad Bill (Ray Winstone), the Mayor and Rattlesnake Jack (Bill Nighy) all excelling without breaking the illusion by being too recognisable. The film is littered with classic western references that will be missed by younger viewers and the film is clearly aimed at an older audience than the trailers and marketing would suggest. In fact as a kid’s film it is not funny or heart-warming enough to be considered alongside the classics of Pixar.
Comparisons to Disney and Pixar are inevitable. While it won’t tug at the heart-strings like some of the very best from the Mouse House, Rango never budges from the theory of the self and the meaning of life. As the main character muses My character’s undefined? That’s absurd! I know who I am. I’m theeee….I’m the guy! The protagonist, the hero! Every story needs a hero! and it is this post-modern thinking that separates Rango from other animations.