'Rango' Controversy: Groups Claim Too Much Smoking for a PG Movie

The “unusual, hilarious and endearingly weird” ‘Rango’ hit theaters last weekend (check out our own Eric D. Snider’s review of the movie), and the animated PG western is causing a stir among anti-smoking advocates who say that the number of characters who light up are unacceptable. “A lot of kids are going to start smoking because of this movie,” said Stanton Glantz director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California–San Francisco.

Breathe California’s project “Thumbs Up! Thumbs Down!” has been keeping a tally of instances where characters in ‘Rango’ smoke, and Kori Titus, CEO of the nonprofit, says the numbers are up to 60. According to Titus, the only other animated film to match ‘Rango’ was ‘101 Dalmatians,’ whose cruel character, Cruella De Vil, was a total chain-smoker (also 60 times over).

Glantz’s group and other smoke-free organizations are renewing efforts with the MPAA to slap an R-rating on any film that shows smoking. In late February, Smoke Free Movies (another one of Glantz’s projects) ran ads in Variety and The Hollywood Reporter that panned studio execs for approving a PG-rating. “If we had known it’s as bad as it is, this ad would have been even tougher,” Glantz said.

“Misguided” Critic

Oh! My word! 2012 is coming!

Rango is corrupting our youth! :stuck_out_tongue:

People these days are so sensitive.

Oh, Jeez Louise.:rolleyes::shrug:

Seriously though, CNS rates Rango for adults only. It says: “a visually striking, quite literate movie whose darker existential ambitions would befuddle and bore kids, when not scaring them, and whose passing, but ill-advised foray into religious humor will jar on the sensibilities of many grownups.”

Took my 4-year-old to see this. While most of it went over his head, he did seem to enjoy it. He wasn’t scared by anything in the movie. And as far as the foray into religious humor, don’t even remember anything like that. The “Spirit of the West” was the only semi-religious thing I remember. And it was nothing “jarring”.

My co-worker just watched it with her 7-year old and she said it was very boring and they used swear words, and the kids didn’t like it at all.

“Rango” is a Western or possibly a spoof of a Western populated by anthropomorphized animals playing familiar roles. I saw it with my 5-year-old son (in fact it was his first visit to a movie theater) and we both enjoyed it. The plot didn’t always make sense but it is a visually memorable film and if you like Westerns, you would probably like this homage.

It’s a shame that the Western genre is largely a thing of the past since for the most part a family can go see a classic Western without worrying about there being anything risque or objectionable about the material; “Rango” was no exception.

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