Friday, March 4, 2011


Yes, I know, I didn't review a movie last week. No, don't worry, I didn't do much. But I did not have much in the way of new releases to look out for, so that's why you didn't get a review last week.

This weekend, though... As a form of penance, I will try to review two movies. Key word being 'try': I'm incredibly busy this weekend, and then throughout most of the next week. (Let's just say it's something reasonably big that's going on IRL and we'll leave it at that for now.) But rest assured, I will try to also review The Adjustment Bureau during the course of the weekend we have left.

But for now... we have other things.

So with that bit of news, let's get to today's movie...


A nameless chameleon (Johnny Depp) finds himself thrust into a crazy Western-style adventure after an unfortunate accident in which he gets ejected from the car his owners were in. When he does so, however, he finds the town of Dirt, in which he finds there is a major shortage of water that is worrying the residents. Taking the name of Rango, said chameleon sets out to help the townspeople while trying to find his place in the world at large.

And said journey consists of a bunch of really ridiculously beautiful frames. Seriously. This movie presents an incredibly fine tapestry of computer-generated artistry. There's something to be admired about almost every single frame in this movie. And the best part? It's not in 3D, so it doesn't have to rely on being gimmicky to look absolutely stunning. There's something visually entertaining for everyone...

...And then there's something entertaining about the whole thing for everyone too. So much so that it might not be entirely a children's movie at all. This movie pushes how much it can get away with under the PG rating for everyone involved. Seeing as how there are references and a few scenes of mildly... eh... unpleasant activities, it may not be a movie for everyone. But this works to its advantage in some ways, as it also hosts some incredibly irreverent humor. The pop-culture references are almost always unexpected (somehow, these people managed to find a way to make a pop-culture joke out of a mammogram, of all things), and there are as many jokes for the older audience as there are for the young ones. And then there are a few very obscure pop-culture references for the nerds: there was a rather prominent a Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas reference, and I was literally the only person in the theater who got the joke.

The only problem... when it's not getting some of its incredibly effective irreverent humor out, the whole thing feels a little stale. I attribute it to the plot: the plot is not the most interesting part of this movie, and in some spots it doesn't really feel like it a mounts to a whole lot, even within the movie itself. It tends to feel pretty trite when it does try to get going on a story level, and nothing about it feels like it's ultimately amounting to much.

Still, even though there is that, the irreverent humor and incredible visuals still make Rango worth at least one viewing. The humor is a very odd thing for a promoted family film, I think, in that it also tries to appease the adults too. In that sense, it comes across as a true family movie. But it's still a very fun movie, and even if you don't have children you should still check it out.


Most definitely worth checking out.

This is Herr Wozzeck Reviews. I'll see you guys next time.

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