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A movie directed by Carlos Saldanha

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Reviewed: Rio [2011]

  • May 6, 2011

U - 96mins - Animation/Adventure/Comedy - 8th April 2011

Rio is an animation from the same people that brought us Ice Age and so it has a fair amount to live up to. It follows the tale of a blue macaw, Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) who is bird-napped as a chick and smuggled into the USA to be sold. During the move though, he falls from the back of the truck and is found by Linda (Leslie Mann) who takes him in and looks after him.

The years pass by until Tulio (Rodrigo Santoro), a extremely bird obsessed ornithologist pays them a visit and offers them a chance to come to Brazil as Blu is the last male of his species and the last female, Jewel (Anne Hathaway), resides in Rio. Blu (who cannot fly) has lived a sheltered, comfortable life with Linda and is all the more happy for it whereas Jewel is the stark contrast and longs to be free from the cage that restricts her as she has tasted freedom before. So when the two meet, the fun starts to happen.

First off, Blue is one happy bird with the animation and his characteristics reflecting that. You immediately like him and this feeling doesn't fade with time. In fact each character has their unique quirks which enables the comedy to flow seamlessly. I was never gulping for air but the jokes are well written and non-stop with the movie certainly having its moments.

Rio, the movie, brings alive the carnival nature and flamboyant mood that one normally associates with Rio, the city, by including a couple of musical numbers into the story. Unfortunately they are not up to the standard of Disney- they are not very catchy or memorable. It's more pop music and rap with Will.I.Am lending his talents to the vocals than the traditional song associated with animations. The background music however certainly get across the energy and vibrancy of Rio with plenty of samba flooding your ears from the off.

The visuals of Rio are impressive (though not quite as good as Rango) and during the flying scenes in particular the city and its surroundings are well captured with many of the iconic landmarks easy to spot. It probably helped that the director Carlos Saldanha was born and raised in the city and so was able capture the true feeling of the place that other directors would not have been able to.

Did this live up to Ice Age then? Very nearly and I wouldn't mind watching it again to see how it handles a second viewing.

Rating: 7.0/10

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May 07, 2011
wonderful review and welcome to the site and to the Movie Hype community!! I liked this one, but I agree with all your points. I do like "Rango" a lot. Thanks!
More Rio: The Movie reviews
review by . April 16, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
A Aventura de um pássaro que não poder voar (The Adventure of a Bird Who Can't Fly) !
Animated Family films have never exactly impressed me, I feel that they are mostly the type of films that follow a certain formula and sticks to it. Not to say that there hasn’t been some serious successes within this genre; Pixar and Dreamworks have made a lot of profit sticking to those same formulas while changing the way those formulas were told. There is also a light-weight called “Blue Sky Studios” that want a piece of the multi-billion dollar pie, and they have had their …
review by . April 19, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
A lighthearted tale of a small town macaw finding his wings in Rio, both literally & figuratively
Cute -- one simple word that sums up this movie.  From its storyline, to its characters and animation, Rio is just all around cute, and it's extra cool knowing that it's voiced by an all-star cast.  The story of how Blu, the macaw voiced by Jesse Eisenberg, came to be the companion of human Linda, voiced by Leslie Mann, is a really sweet one.  It shows how a very young Linda discovered him when he was just a chick.  They've been inseparable since, with Blu becoming …
review by . September 10, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
*** out of ****     "Rio", the new animated film from the minds who brought us the popular "Ice Age", has a good heart and a good idea going for it. I imagine that much like another 2011 animation, "Mars Needs Moms", its concept could have gone to waste through an overly sentimental tone and a lack of depth and humor; but that is not close to what happens. Most animated films I watch end up being great, good, or very rarely bad/mediocre. Those who work in animation often have …
review by . April 16, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         Rio is a straightforward but exuberant animated film, brought to life in an explosion of color and infectious Latin beats – and, of course, through the process of 3D, that most unstoppable of all recent movie trends. But I won’t dwell on that. Looking at this film was a terrific experience for me; think of an extreme close-up of an artist’s palette, where oil paints are creatively being mixed together. That it employs first-rate …
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James ()
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About this movie


When Blu, a domesticated macaw from small-town Minnesota, meets the fiercely independent Jewel, he takes off on an adventure to Rio de Janeiro with this bird of his dreams.
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Director: Carlos Saldanha
Genre: Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Family
Release Date: 15 April 2011 (USA)
MPAA Rating: PG
Screen Writer: Don Rhymer
Runtime: 96 minutes
Studio: Blue Sky Studios, Twentieth Century Fox Animation
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