Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Rango Is Wacky, Witty Fun

Plus, The Adjustment Bureau features great chemistry, but Take Me Home Tonight and Beastly miss the mark.

by | March 3, 2011 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a leapin’ lizard (Rango, with voice work from Johnny Depp and Abigail Breslin); a fateful romance (The Adjustment Bureau, starring Matt Damon and Emily Blunt); a night to remember (Take Me Home Tonight, starring Topher Grace and Anna Faris); and some ugly love (Beastly, starring Alex Pettyfer and Vanessa Hudgens). What do the critics have to say?



Rango

88%

In an animation landscape dominated creatively and commercially by Pixar, it’s rare that a CGI feature brings much originality to the table. However, critics say that’s the case with Rango, which they say is a manic, wildly inventive, very funny homage/parody of spaghetti Westerns. Rango (voiced by Johnny Depp) is a pet chameleon who finds himself in a town without pity, populated by various desert animals who act like supporting players in an old oater. With delusions of grandeur, Rango installs himself as the town’s sheriff, and hilarity ensues. The pundits say Rango is probably a little to earthy for little kids, but older children and adults will delight in the movie’s irrepressible energy and irreverent pop-cultural references.



The Adjustment Bureau

71%

The works of Philip K. Dick have been adapted to the screen many times (Blade Runner and Total Recall are probably the best-known examples), and it seems that Dick’s paranoid, thought-provoking worldview never goes out of style. The latest Dick adaptation is The Adjustment Bureau, which critics say is a sleek, romantic romance that benefits greatly from the chemistry between Matt Damon and Emily Blunt. Damon plays a politician who encounters Blunt, the woman of his dreams. However, a shadowy organization is conspiring to keep them apart – but why? The pundits say The Adjustment Bureau doesn’t always make sense, and the ending is a letdown, but Damon and Blunt sizzle, and the film moves along at a brisk, confident pace.



Take Me Home Tonight

28%

The 1980s are all the rage these days, what with the recent revival of several action classics from the decade, so it isn’t surprising to see the John Hughes-esque young adult comedy Take Me Home Tonight hitting theaters. Unfortunately, critics say that despite sporting a certain sweetness, the film fails either to be original or sufficiently funny. Topher Grace stars as a recent MIT grad who, much to the chagrin of his family, takes up employment at a local video store. When his high school crush strolls in and invites him to the summer party to end all parties, he embarks on the wildest night of his life. Critics say Take Me Home Tonight is too derivative of the movies it presumes to emulate, and though its affection for nostalgia is charming, it teeters too perilously between homage and parody with unimpressive comic results. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down the biggest box office hits of 1988, as well as Grace’s Five Favorite Films.)



Beastly

21%

Hollywood is in the habit of updating fairy tales to modern times, so it was probably only a matter of time until we got an emo-era Beauty and the Beast. However, critics find that the Twilight-aping Beastly misses the depth of the original tale by a wide margin; this update is a little too sappy — and poorly scripted — to get much freshness out of its beauty’s-only-skin-deep moral. Alex Pettyfer stars as a vain, cruel bully who gets his comeuppance after a girl he’s tormented casts a spell on him and turns his face to a mess of scars. Will this self-centered jerk learn to treat others better? The pundits say Beastly features groan-worthy dialogue and soapy melodramatics, and the result is a dumbed-down, middling adaptation.

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

cancelled Disney TCM Fox Searchlight Holiday dragons WarnerMedia Brie Larson Winners popular Tomatazos Shondaland mcc See It Skip It rt labs critics edition The CW Arrowverse MSNBC FOX Apple TV+ Funimation Pop TV Ovation PlayStation high school king arthur Nat Geo Amazon Prime slashers A24 NBC Comedy 79th Golden Globes Awards BET Awards hollywood toy story new star wars movies twilight obituary Star Wars dexter dogs canceled spider-verse Epix olympics ABC Family royal family Pixar werewolf ghosts Starz Ellie Kemper Apple WGN comics Universal Universal Pictures cinemax animated Nickelodeon BBC One aapi Sci-Fi reboot streaming 007 YouTube Red documentaries football singing competition Vudu cooking TV Land Turner Classic Movies Alien Amazon Prime Video sports supernatural social media FXX Esquire HBO trophy facebook joker Kids & Family 4/20 Tokyo Olympics versus king kong theme song PBS boxoffice Sundance movie rom-coms 2019 golden globe awards archives disaster Avengers Stephen King IMDb TV Emmys cats Disney Plus rotten Drama period drama jamie lee curtis Instagram Live Mary Tyler Moore MTV SDCC Winter TV Food Network Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Music BBC Ghostbusters Western mission: impossible basketball worst AMC Plus kaiju vs. target politics Discovery Channel nfl toronto historical drama dreamworks Infographic GLAAD Marvel composers superhero crime gangster a nightmare on elm street PaleyFest Logo TIFF Exclusive Video mockumentary Writers Guild of America CW Seed Walt Disney Pictures Super Bowl Neflix Britbox spain Showtime scary movies Women's History Month Dark Horse Comics dramedy adaptation 2015 2020 Election Mystery Lucasfilm mutant zero dark thirty sequels Holidays Captain marvel 45 sag awards VICE scary Columbia Pictures satire Comic Book Disney streaming service robots godzilla quibi Heroines Acorn TV The Academy blockbusters Lifetime Christmas movies prank south america Travel Channel 24 frames 2018 Fall TV binge TNT Spring TV sequel classics Valentine's Day reviews universal monsters Emmy Nominations NBA children's TV dark Wes Anderson Cannes Toys Family indie halloween zombie women Warner Bros. CNN stop motion finale Turner unscripted cancelled television blockbuster CBS Spike documentary casting The Arrangement docuseries feel good thriller Watching Series USA Network Television Academy Red Carpet criterion Trailer Mudbound MCU Animation 73rd Emmy Awards heist movie black Awards sitcom action-comedy Black History Month monster movies mob Amazon Studios 2017 TruTV Pet Sematary romantic comedy crossover Black Mirror rt archives Sneak Peek Tarantino Paramount book nature Musical series italian LGBTQ Film Festival The Walt Disney Company trailers Cartoon Network Classic Film romance Freeform adventure political drama Video Games 2021 miniseries Action 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards zombies ID Extras comic book movie Character Guide Fox News OWN game show crime thriller crime drama History talk show science fiction comedies indiana jones 99% Grammys Musicals Hear Us Out renewed TV shows deadpool Tumblr award winner Polls and Games 90s Anna Paquin Trophy Talk franchise rotten movies we love Disney+ Disney Plus Country Best and Worst Hallmark japan child's play Christmas laika cops Rocky biopic breaking bad Sundance TV Adult Swim french San Diego Comic-Con ViacomCBS Legendary Netflix Christmas movies movies New York Comic Con GoT FX Opinion doctor who festivals blaxploitation teaser Shudder Oscars scorecard Binge Guide stoner live action USA video on demand anime leaderboard 72 Emmy Awards E3 Baby Yoda Horror new york Crackle cartoon GIFs technology based on movie dc canceled TV shows true crime TBS HBO Max what to watch cancelled TV shows kong The Walking Dead Crunchyroll SXSW Television Critics Association ABC Signature DC streaming service Marathons Bravo vampires sopranos biography spanish National Geographic FX on Hulu Mary poppins Biopics Tags: Comedy Netflix DGA Nominations hispanic heritage month police drama golden globes elevated horror witnail psycho TV movies serial killer latino docudrama spanish language razzies medical drama video boxing spinoff TV Broadway Song of Ice and Fire superman hist Interview discovery independent Schedule rt labs Set visit Pacific Islander Cosplay live event Star Trek DC Universe all-time critic resources OneApp chucky directors YouTube comic books Awards Tour Certified Fresh Rock game of thrones 1990s TV One Pride Month adenture ESPN Pirates revenge television Paramount Plus wonder woman Sundance Now Hallmark Christmas movies 93rd Oscars hidden camera Academy Awards tv talk BET cars BBC America parents new zealand comic HBO Go legend name the review A&E diversity comiccon travel Image Comics Trivia spy thriller lord of the rings TV renewals IFC Films Amazon marvel comics Creative Arts Emmys Fargo art house Box Office foreign RT History christmas movies American Society of Cinematographers die hard Rom-Com First Look Comics on TV YA screenings black comedy Sony Pictures japanese spider-man Pop kids Paramount Network ITV IFC Marvel Television Quiz 2016 psychological thriller Marvel Studios El Rey E! TCA Winter 2020 Mary Poppins Returns strong female leads slasher scene in color aliens cults Elton John richard e. Grant APB films Syfy debate Prime Video hispanic BAFTA fresh Superheroes TCA Awards Fantasy natural history Reality Competition NYCC ABC australia LGBT Podcast Year in Review book adaptation nbcuniversal war batman Summer Hollywood Foreign Press Association Apple TV Plus CMT genre CBS All Access anthology VH1 Hulu Photos X-Men venice Masterpiece TLC asian-american Teen Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Endgame Disney Channel SundanceTV marvel cinematic universe know your critic Reality green book Peacock free movies TCA 2017 stand-up comedy international festival DirecTV The Witch 21st Century Fox Mindy Kaling Comic-Con@Home 2021 VOD HFPA Spectrum Originals Martial Arts jurassic park emmy awards First Reviews young adult screen actors guild james bond pirates of the caribbean concert Calendar Rocketman ratings TCA Thanksgiving telelvision President AMC cancelled TV series suspense Comedy Central best DC Comics fast and furious Film posters space transformers halloween tv Tubi justice league Premiere Dates RT21 harry potter 20th Century Fox Chernobyl 71st Emmy Awards The Purge remakes critics worst movies Countdown Superheroe YouTube Premium Lionsgate saw streaming movies dceu news comic book movies Lifetime