When Rango, a lost family pet, accidentally winds up in the gritty, gun-slinging town of Dirt, the less-than-courageous lizard suddenly finds he stands out. Welcomed as the last hope the town has been waiting for, new Sheriff Rango is forced to play his new role to the hilt.
Johnny Depp provides a familiar voice for a chameleon that wishes to be a swashbuckling hero. Lars, (Rango) the chameleon, finds himself in a real western town where he must play the role for real in order to save the town. This spoof uses animal characters to portray a world that is like the Old West. The main character is a chameleon and they ride chickens instead of horses in this world. A mariachi band of owls provides the soundtrack for the action, adding that South of the Border flavor, with a little bit mixed in that sounds like it is right out of the Spaghetti Westerns. The entire movie is a spaghetti westernäó_only with chameleons, moles and other creatures substituted for John Wayne and Clint Eastwood.
Go to this movie with the expectations that is has more than a fair share of clichí©s from westerns thrown in. The opening trailer tells the story of what to expect. Right from the beginning, the trailer tells the audience that there will be action, romance, comedy, adventure, explosions and more explosions. This should tell parents that the movie has everything they could ask for in a western spoof. The movie looks kid-friendly enough, with cute animal caricatures of animals with big eyes. The fantasy world makes the movie look like a fun movie for kids. It is absolutely hilarious, particularly if you happen to be a fan of old spaghetti westerns.
It may look like a good family movie, but this family movie review has to ask how the film ended up with a PG rating. It was not a G for rude humor, language, action, and smoking. On that point, the MPAA and this family movie guide must agree. However, there are a few elements in the movie that parents need to be warned about before they take their younger children. The movie has an old western theme, and there are a lot of guns blazing and used throughout, including some old western type showdowns and standoffs. There is excessive violence throughout, but it is presented in a funny manner. For instance, characters do not bleed when they are shot, and they are not apparently harmed by the gunshot wound. Many characters in the movie meet a violent demise. Death is a continual theme throughout the movie and it is not presented seriously, but in a manner that is fun and games.
Aside from this, the characters do a few things that are disturbing, even for the adults. For instance, a snake puts the squeeze on character. The most disturbing part is that the snake tells her that he wants to watch while she dies. They show a dead body being taken away to be eaten by an eagle. There are a lot of dead bodies, and even one scene that shows a doctor closing the victimäó»s eyes. There were way too many deaths and images of death for a kidäó»s movie.
But wait, parents, if you still think this is appropriate for small children, the characters in the movie chew, smoke, drink and cuss. Yes, in one scene, the words äóìyou son of aäó and the last word is covered up. You know that your kids will fill in the blank. In another part of the move, one character tells the other to äóìsign the D#*N papersäó. The other character explicitly tells him where to go in response. I thought this was supposed to be a KIDäó»S movie guys! Who were you writing for? The adults might appreciate the humor, but give me a break! Yes, there are comedy scenes to distract from these elements of the movie, but they are still there. This move might be good for the adults, but parents be forewarned if you take younger children. This parental guide to the movies gives it a PG-13, but that age probably would not like it as well as those younger than this age. It was targeted towards younger children, but they missed the mark in terms of content.