The 9 Most Unabashedly Positive Reviews of Rango

Rango! Out of nowhere, smack dab in the middle of the early-year movie doldrums, comes this little slice of cinematic treasure. Personally, I just want to go to my roof and scream, "Please, for the love of God, you must see Rango!" (OK, I've actually done that twice this week.) My fear, though, is that Rango's intended audience -- the people most likely reading this -- is going to pass on Gore Verbinski's animated instaclassic, dismissing it as a kids' movie. So, borrowing from this site's more regular "9 Most Scathing Reviews" feature, let's turn it around this week and accentuate the positive! From across the Internet, here are nine of most unabashed raves for Rango.

9. "In a world choked with animated films -- the good, the bad and the ugly -- it's hard to be either original or great. Yet director Gore Verbinski has done both -- and without 3-D..." -- Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times

8. "It is only the first week of March and we are still getting over last year's award season. But with the release of Gore Verbinski's Rango, the race for 2011's Best Animated Feature may have just begun. And may have just ended." Erik Childress, eFilmCritic

7. "The dusty cards of the Old West are reshuffled into a winning hand in Rango, a madly clever animated sagebrush saga with style and wit to burn. Reconfiguring the spaghetti Western into a fusilli con camaleonte, Gore Verbinski's surprising escape picture after years in the Caribbean is eye-poppingly visualized in a hyper-realistic style that at times borders on the surrealist." -- Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter

6. "With Rango, the only thing more astonishing than its subversive sense of humor and general anarchy is the fact that a studio is putting it in wide release. It's a cartoon about talking animals, but I don't know if kids will like it. I'm not even sure it's intended for them. Some of the jokes are surprisingly grown-up. The story has direct references to Chinatown, Blazing Saddles, Star Wars, Apocalypse Now, and spaghetti Westerns. The humor is slapstick one minute, hallucinatory the next. The characters are deliberately un-cute in appearance, with great attention paid to the grimy details of their matted fur, unsightly scales, and physical imperfections. The whole thing feels like the Coen brothers made a Tex Avery cartoon set in the Old West, ran it through a Pixar filter, and then dipped it in LSD." -- Eric D. Snider, Moviefone

5. "Rango has all the marks of a classic animated film in that you completely forget you're watching animated talking animals, but anyone disappointed by True Grit will get everything out of this they might hope from a Coen brothers Western." -- Edward Douglas, ComingSoon

4. "You know those animated films that have bits that the parents will enjoy? Rango is mostly those bits. The film is for movie geeks and Depp fans tickled to see the gonzo actor role-play around. (Before he dons his chaps, the chameleon sports a Hawaiian shirt and has the bad-boy attitude of the late iconoclast and journalist Hunter S. Thompson.)" -- Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer

3. "A movie made by outlaw insiders, Rango is the rarest of studio releases: one that stubbornly resists limits. Which is not to say you need cult tastes to enjoy its irreverence. In a vocal performance of extraordinary range, Depp offers something for everyone, while those old enough to enjoy Pirates of the Caribbean's bawdy humor will welcome the similar sensibility here. Visual consultant Roger Deakins -- who last made True Grit -- ensures that each shot is a visual marvel. Really, the animation is so gorgeously rendered, it puts every 3-D effort in recent memory to shame." -- Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News

2. "But the odd thing about Rango is that unlike so many of its peers, it is odd. In spite of a profile that should place it alongside Megamind and Despicable Me and the long list of other overblown, have-fun-or-else cartoons, this rambling, anarchic tale is gratifyingly fresh and eccentric." -- A.O. Scott, The New York Times

1. "Rango is some kind of a miracle: An animated comedy for smart moviegoers, wonderfully made, great to look at, wickedly satirical, and (gasp!) filmed in glorious 2-D. Its brilliant colors and startling characters spring from the screen and remind us how very, very tired we are of simpleminded little characters bouncing around dimly in 3-D." -- Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times


  • casting couch says:

    Wow, sounds like it might actually be good.

  • Mike Ryan says:

    I promise, it's VERY good.

  • By itself, the tendency landmark "plasticine" movie is not just a scare and enters into a state of stupor true connoisseurs of cinema.
    With the growing popularity of this video (another definition simply does not want to give), we are gradually moving away from traditional foundations is lost and drops the key role of Acker and directed the film crew. In the first part out.
    Instead of empathy and complicity of the audience in the film we are left only one manifestation of emotions - the ability to have fun ... of plasticine masterpiece, much of which made the machine ... And the second important point! Unfortunate that the first part goes calculation of the future picture, its profitability and the number of actors of a torus-line scoring.
    Thank you!

  • fabio marchione says:

    I have seen this film 3 times already and have to say it is probably the most visually stunning pics I've seen in a long long time. The guy who art directed it is a genius! I am seeing it again this weekend! Finally an animated film for people with a BRAIN!