Who could predict that combining some of the sharpest vocal work you'll find in a non-Pixar animated movie (Johnny Depp gives a strong performance) with hideous character designs (eye injury abounds) and a story that is too druggy and dark for most kids would result in the best major-studio release of 2011 so far? Rango is like the film adaptation of the western-themed children's book that Hunter S. Thompson never got around to writing, and a pleasant surprise from beginning to end. Go see it. Just don't bring the kids. (See Movie Times: thestranger.com/film)

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