This was an odd little movie, but that’s all a part of its charm. Rango is about a domestic chameleon who thinks he’s an actor, and when he ends up in the desert by accident, he pretends he;’s a gunslinger to fit in with the townsfolk. What we get after this is a rather interesting western which is half formulaic and half unique. The formula is seen by the character arc of becoming famous, then having people find out the truth, then having to gain back their trust. The uniqueness comes through the interesting conspiracy and Rango’s personality himself.
There’s some really strong dialogue in here, spoken with a lot of flair by the voice actors, especially Johnny Depp as Rango and Bill Nighy as Rattlesnake Jake. Rango’s improvisation to get himself in with the townsfolk is quite fun and some really smart lines seem to come out of no where. There’s also a lot of great, yet just subtle enough, movie references to make us chuckle.
However, the real star of this film is the animation. Wow, is it incredible! There is a really neat visual style here, and everything is created with such amazing detail. The one outstanding feature here is texture: the texture of the skins of the various animals, the texture of their clothing, the texture of the landscape (just check out the pebbles of Rango’s terrarium at the very beginning). Somehow this movie manages to wow you with its visual appeal through the entire run of the film. Just amazing animation. Amazing.