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Rio More at IMDbPro »

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127 out of 174 people found the following review useful:

Location, location, location. It's Rio!

Author: lnery from Brazil
4 April 2011

"Oh, how wish I was back in my cage, with my mirror, and my little bell"

Jesse Eisenberg should be forever grateful that the Oscar-nominated "The Social Network" was released before Rio. That's because his voice as Blu, the macaw, is so distinctive and perfect, that in my mind he will always be Blu. And if Rio had been released months ago, audiences worldwide would think that Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook founder, missed his cage, mirror and little bell.

Now, for the movie itself…

Location, location, location. Because what's Rio, the movie, without (pulsating, colorful, exuberant, romantic) Rio, the city? The story is delightful, though predictable. The characters are cardboard, even if 3D and feathery. But "predictable" and "cardboard" are the worst adjectives I could possibly link to Rio. The Rio deal, is that I laughed all the way through it, like everybody else in the theater.

Blu, the last male of his kind, is the happiest macaw, out there in a snowy town with Linda, his nerdy owner. Jewel, the last female of her kind, lives in Brazil, and is the saddest macaw, imprisoned in a cage and fighting for her freedom. She's a free-spirited soul, with the world at her feet. Blu has lived a sheltered life, can't fly, and loves every minute of it. What happens when they meet? Anyone above the age of 7 can guess how it ends (age 5 if he's seen the trailer). But there's so much delight from the first minute to the last, that you don't want it to end.

I was one of the lucky few to watch the premiere of Rio in Rio, and at this point I can hardly wait to see it again. A Brazilian, Carlos Saldanha, directed the movie, and it shows. The details of the city are all there, but so is the big picture (you know, everything that really matters, along with wide panoramas of Rio by night, of a crowded beach, of a sunset in the cable cars of Santa Teresa).

Lots of AMAZING aerial views in the action scenes. The main characters are birds, thus flying should be expected. Many of those places showed in the movie can be visited by tourists.

Rio doesn't have the depth of stories such as Toy Story or Up. It is a simpler plot. It is, however, pure fun from start to finish, and visually stunning. Location, location, location. As a native of Rio, I could recognize most places, and was stunned with how realistic were the slums, and how the geography of the city, especially the mountains, could be so painstakingly reproduced.

The movie is not a musical, but it comes close to it. There's funk, bossa nova, a few clichés of Brazilian music and even samba sang in English (still conflicted about it!).

There is also the portrayal of animal trafficking, a centuries-old problem in Brazil, and the subplot of a boy who lives on the streets and must resort to petty crime, which adds up to a much-needed social commentary.

By all means, don't miss this movie!

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84 out of 132 people found the following review useful:

Rio-an epic, lovable, beautiful and visually stunning animation

Author: drakula2005 from Bulgaria
10 April 2011

Not many animations like Rio come around these days.When i first saw the trailer and the team behind this very anticipated animation, the Ice Age team, i knew it will be very enjoyable and fun to watch.Seeing a TV spot right now, i remember that it was all those things, but much more as well.The quality of the animation was unique-only two or three movies can still compete with this and those are Tangled, Up and How to Train Your Dragon.But still, there was so much going on in Rio, the birds, the colors, the non-stopping stream of movement, lights, music and songs, around the carnival in Rio or in the opening and closing scenes with the singing and dancing of the birds in the forests around the city.So much was going on and with such quality, that no animation has matched.And those epic proportions of the animation are its strongest qualities.Something one can't see every day.

The character development was very good, beginning with a little background of the macaw bird Blu's life, with his owner Linda in Minnesota.Maybe, the other macaw, Jewel, was a little underdeveloped as a character, but with positive reviews coming, there might be a sequel coming on the way as well.Then, Jewel's background might be better developed.

With an animation of such proportions, some box office power along with a few Oscar noms will surely be along the way and the fact that it takes place in Rio alone, will act as an audience magnet, given that Rio's one of the most popular and non-stopping cities in the world.This magical feeling stays all along the movie.You just can't forget you're in Rio.

Rio is as well another example of an animation, worth the time and money of both young and grown-ups.That's what catches the eye.20-th Century Fox has made a great animation and with the possible box-office power of the movie, a sequel might as well be on the works.

So, a great animation, very epic and visually stunning, Rio will keep everyone mesmerized and captivated long after the end, and personally for me is one of the best, if not the bast animation i've seen.

I definitely hope for a sequel and i'll definitely see it again, at the movies.

10/10 for this stunning, colorful, heartwarming and breathtaking experience, named Rio!

P.S.The one thing i thought was missing, was Bellini's Samba De Janeiro- this song can make the mood of every crowd in the world :)

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36 out of 51 people found the following review useful:

Nice Artwork, but mediocre characterization

Author: arthurwitulski from United States
29 May 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

After reading a good review of this movie I talked my wife into going to see it, as I love animation. I wanted to see the artwork and I thought the Brazilian music would be a plus. Well, the first three minutes fulfilled my expectations, but it was downhill from there. The artwork is indeed good in most scenes and breathtaking in one or two. However, the difference between this and a Pixar film is in the story telling and characterization. Whereas an adult can easily watch a film like "Toy Story 3" or "Up" multiple times, in "Rio," the characters really never develop enough depth for you to suspend your disbelief. Tulio's bird imitation are meant to be comic, but instead are ridiculous. Linda is the shy introvert girl from Minnesota who predictably asserts herself when the going gets rough. I never understood why two of the major characters in Rio are not Brazilian, but instead talk like two Home Boys from the Bronx. Well, you get the idea. There is one character that succeeds admirably, and that is the villain, an evil bird named Nigel. But all told, this film is fine for kids, but I would not recommend it for adults.

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68 out of 118 people found the following review useful:

My favourite movie of the year so far

Author: TheLittleSongbird from United Kingdom
8 April 2011

That in mind, there is more of 2011 I have yet to see, hence the so far bit, but I absolutely loved this movie after seeing it when it came out today. From the trailers and advertising it looked like a bright, breezy and entertaining animation, and in my mind it was much more than that. And I genuinely mean it when I say it is my favourite of the year so far, even surpassing the outstanding(if somewhat misunderstood) Rango.

What I loved most about Rio was its energy. Rio for me has more energy than any of the Ice Age(from the same team) movies, and its energy is truly infectious at that. Two reasons especially make it so. One is the writing, I wasn't expecting the writing to be this sharp, funny and witty, looking at some of the previous work the writer has penned, while the jokes are plentiful and come by thick and fast. The other is the soundtrack. It has a huge amount of authentic Brazilian flavour and just ripples with zest. I loved the samba and bossa nova rhythms that pulsate throughout, and further fun is to be had in the Busby Berkeley-style beginning and the truly spectacular Carnaeval finale.

The story isn't perhaps original, nor did it need to be, but it is fast-paced, with many entertaining scenes and is very rarely predictable. There is also the obligatory life lessons here which are seamlessly blended without feeling shoe-horned in or preachy. I loved the characters too. Blu is very endearing, and voiced brilliantly by The Social Network's Jesse Eisenberg. Jewel is a lovely love interest, and her chemistry with Blu is ceaselessly entertaining and cute. Anne Hathaway previously voiced Haru on the English dub of The Cat Returns. She did a fine job on that, but in Rio she is even better, more understated and less shrill. I equally loved the villainous cockatoo Nigel(who avoids being a caricature and the like and voiced phenomonally by Jermaine Clement) and the constantly drooling bull-dog.

Other than the above components, what also made Rio was its animation, which is simply stupendous. I haven't seen an animated movie in a long while(and I am a huge fan of animation) where the colours in particular are so rich and warm. The characters are also beautifully modelled especially the titular character Blu, and this includes the secondary characters as well, and the sceneries and backgrounds are breathtaking with such a refreshing richness and warmth. In conclusion, a wonderful animated film and my favourite of the year so far. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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38 out of 60 people found the following review useful:

Bird Love and Nerd Love

Author: freemantle_uk from United Kingdom
8 April 2011

The Brazilian city Rio de Janeiro is serving as the setting for two films being released this April: one being a full on action film, Fast and Furious 5, the other being a family animated adventure. Rio is that film and shows that the Fox subsidiary Blue Sky Studios is growing from strength to strength.

Blu the Spix's Macaw's (Jesse Eisenberg) early life is tragic, having fledging from his nest too early and been kidnapped by poachers. Luckily he was adopted by a loving owner, Linda (Leslie Mann) as a little girl. 15 years later Linda owns a bookstore in the snowy landscape of Minnesota and Blu becoming a very nerdy bird. A Brazilian ornithologist, Túlio (Rodrigo Santoro) finds Linda and tells her that Blu is the last male of his species and takes them to Rio de Janeiro so the bird could breed. But Blu does not hit it off with Jewel (Anne Hathaway) and matters get worst when poachers take the birds and chain them together. When their escape Blu and Jewel they try and reunite with Linda whilst avoiding being captured by the poachers and their insane cockatoo Nigel (Jemaine Clement).

Rio is a pure formula picture and there are many elements have been in other films, such as Blu being taken from the wild as a chick, the animosity between Blu and Jewel and we all know where it is going to lead, the story of Nigel having a tragic past and being rejected, etc, etc…. But formula does not have to be bad and when done right it can easily lead to an enjoyable film for all the family. Director Carlos Saldanda certainly made a fast paced adventure with a great amount of velvet colour. There is a more old-fashion feel to it, like Disney films and its copycats in the 90s. Pop-culture references are toned down and there are a few musical numbers which is rare in CGI animated features. The animation itself has a similar look to Pixar's particular the human characters, though Túlio looks very similar to the main character in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. The animation of the parrots climbing is particularly well done and true to live to anyone who has ever own one.

Much of the humour of the film is kid friendly slapstick as is expected from this type of film and it is done very well. There is enough for parents and adults audiences to keep them entertaining. My personal favourites were the double act Kipo (Robin Thicke) and Marcel (Carlos Ponce) who were the dumb henchmen for the poacher and outsmarted by a cockatoo. They have some of the best lines in the film. But the two characters Pedro the Red-crested Cardinal ( and Nico the yellow canary (Jamie Fox) were annoying and pretty stereotypical.

Eisenberg gives a typical nerdy performance as his character is book-smart, but not adventurous at all, preferring to be safe with his owner. Compared to Hathaway she is a feisty, strong female character who wants to explore and distrusts humans. Both learn from each other, for Blu that there is a wider world and for Jewel that not all humans are bad. Clement was funny as he parodies British actors playing psychopathic villains in action films. Though I do question why ornithologists did not question why they had an injured cockatoo considering the species is native to Australia and New Guinea (but this is a minor issue). As well as the bird love in the film there is also some nerd love.

A respectable 7.5/10.

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33 out of 52 people found the following review useful:

Adventures of Bird Blu!

Author: spacespidy from United States
11 April 2011

It's story of how love compels to break comfort zone and discover our new self. Visually stunning Rio is brilliant stroke of writers to add magic to adventures and love tale of endangered bird "Blu". Story wouldn't have been same with Samba, carnival, beaches, mountain views, Tram buses if it was not Rio.

The whole story revolves around Tamed Blu and wild Jewel. Jesse Eisenber and Anne Hathaway did their best voice acting. Apart from Blu and Jewel there are plenty of characters which build story effectively and added plenty of rib tickling moments.

Even though story is simple and very much predictable with obvious ending, still story survives to tell a tale of love despite differences. Brilliant animation in 3d will take you on Journey of adventure and fun!

A must watch for its animation!

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37 out of 62 people found the following review useful:

Colors and Flying

Author: TourettesPersonal from Philippines
7 April 2011

The main plot of "Rio", an endangered bird doesn't know how to fly. It sounds a bit predictable and this plot was already used by many movies. But the core of this film is showing the beautiful place of Rio De Janeiro. The filmmaking was great. Colorful visuals, often hilarious, and decent directing.

There is nothing wrong with the voice acting. The main cast, Jesse Eisenber and Anne Hathaway are like the bird versions of them. Jemaine Clement really made his character evil. The rest of the cast,, Jamie Foxx and George Lopez adds more fun to the movie. I just wish Tracy Morgan's character Luiz had more scenes.

The visuals are colorful and very spectacular. It really shows how beautiful Rio De Janeiro is. The flying sequence is indeed breathtaking even if it's in 2D. The problem of the movie is it's not so compelling. The ending seems rushed. We will all know what's gonna happened to this flightless bird. Although the movie has a big heart. The movie is often funny of course.

Overall it's a fun experience. "Rio" is not like Pixar but it's still enjoyable for the whole family. After watching all of those awful recent blockbusters, I think "Rio" is the best movie I've seen this year so far. It could be the studio's best movie yet.

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18 out of 28 people found the following review useful:

Colorful and energetic, but ultimately lacking in heart

Author: gregeichelberger from San Diego
16 April 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Director Carlos Saldanha and the other creative minds behind the "Ice Age" franchise, have come up with a vibrant new animal centric CGI effort featuring the colorful birds of Brazil. And even the annoying vocalizations of Tracy Morgan and Will i. am do not detract from the fun - too much.

"Rio," written by Saldanha and Don Rhymer, tells the tale of a dispossessed blue Mackaw, Blu (voiced by Jesse Eisenberg, "Zombieland," "The Social Network") captured in Rio de Janeiro transported to the states and found by a little girl, Linda, in Minnesota. She grows up and Blu, used to the domesticated life, is perfectly content until Brazilian ornithologist Tulio (Rodrigo Santoro) arrives to inform her that Blu is the last male of his species.

Guilt-ridden, Linda agrees to accompany Tulio back to Rio to mate her pet to the last female, Jewel (Anne Hathaway, "Love and Other Drugs"). Of course, complications arise when an unscrupulous exotic bird smuggler and his evil cockatoo henchman, Nigel (Jermaine Clement), capture the feathered pair. Like any number of films like this, the mismatched human duo must now unite to save their animal counterparts.

Meanwhile, other supporting characters line up on both sides. Giving aid and comfort to Blu and Jewel include a toucan, Rafael (George Lopez), a canary, Nico (Jamie Foxx), a fat pigeon rapper (Will and a misplaced bulldog (Tracy Morgan). Joining up with the smuggler is a gaggle of fierce but inept monkeys.

Despite the assistance, the two heroes are ultimately left to save themselves. Flightless and pampered, Blu must also prove himself a worthy companion to the bold and confident Jewel, something that does not come easily.

The artists behind this movie certainly create a wild and brilliant eye-pleasing adventure. The rhythms and hues of this South American escapade are wonderful to behold and the tunes are fairly enjoyable, from Lionel Ritchie to Jamie Foxx to an irritating rap by Will

The problem is the story. We've seen this domesticated animal returns to their primitive roots premise before in "Madagascar," "The Wild" and, most recently, "Rango." Blu also plays the same old spoiled nerd fish-out-of-water character who somehow learns a lifetime of instinct and savvy in a few minutes in an attempt to capture the unattainable female of the species.

The pacing is frenetic and the human characters take a backseat the the the feathery and furry stars of the picture. That' fine, though, because Linda and Tulio are fairly non-descript, anyhow.

Smaller children will most likely get a big kick from the vast and sparkling colors - especially the Carnival finale. Older kids and adults may chuckle at a few situations, but overall may find the going a bit tedious, particularly when the obligatory bird-brained moral life lessons hit like a splat on the windshield of a freshly washed automobile.

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

I hate to call a movie "overrated", but this one fits the definition

Author: leo-noboru from Brazil
19 December 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Down here in ol' South America, most precisely in Brazil--which just so happens to be the setting for this movie--rumor has it Brazilian director Carlos Saldanha's "Rio" is perhaps the strongest contender for the Animated Feature Oscar, not to mention it is right up there with Pixar's recent works as one of the best animations of the past few years. It's been a consensus among Brazilian critics that it was by far the best animated feature of the year and one of the highlights of the year in general; "Rio" earned four stars out of five in virtually all Brazilian papers and magazines and a good deal of the most respected critics of the country surrendered to its so-called tear-jerking depiction of the city where it's set. Well, ladies and gentleman, the truth is, all this praise is nothing but the result of blind boosterism, for "Rio" is, in all honesty, a bad movie. Period.

The idea of there only being two blue macaws left in the world and one of them living in Minnesota is quite hard to swallow on itself. Then you add a romantic arc as cliché as it can be: an insecure, spoiled male meets a hot-tempered, independent female. The female doesn't like the male at first; the male has a major issue that he has been struggling to overcome. They forcibly set off on an adventure where they get to know each other; the male falls in love with the female, and, with the help of cute side characters, becomes closer and closer to her. They face a near-death experience toward the end of the movie where it all depends on the male's ability to overcome his issue. Then the female kisses the male and suddenly he finds the strength to save their lives, and they live happily ever after. Yes, Blu and Jewel's plot could be thought up by a nine-year-old kid (who never watched a Pixar movie). It is, at most, a silly story made to sell Rio de Janeiro's tourism potential and thematize Burger King giveaways. Actually, it kinda reminds me of Dreamworks Animation at its worst: uninspired, commercial, overconfident (e.g. Madagascar 1 and the Shrek sequels).

Don't get me wrong; this movie could be watchable as a fun children's movie if you didn't know about the outrageous overrating it received. But the very fact that "Rio" gets to a point where every line is situation is entirely predictable and yet critics claim it was "breathtaking" makes me wonder how much praise it would have received had it been set in a country like, say, Australia. Critics seem to be blind to the amount of ridiculousnesses in this movie, ranging from English-speaking bird traffickers and unrealistic situations to silly musical acts and, even though Rio is the director's hometown, preposterous stereotypes (Guess what? The American characters arrive just in time for Carnaval!).

Everything in this movie deserves a 4 out of 10--the characters are cute but extremely stereotyped, some jokes are really funny but most of them are downright naive, John Powell's score is great as usual but the songs are awful, the plot is efficient but way too predictable, and the kids will have a lot of fun but the adults will most certainly not, unless they are proud Brazilians. The only really good aspect of the film is the voice acting, but then again, any film can have good voice acting with the right amount of money to hire good performers like Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway. So if you want my opinion, I say don't listen to the critics--they'll make you watch this instead of the way better "Cars 2"--and don't spend your money on this, because it is nothing but commercial cinema that confirms how weak 2011 was in terms of animated films. And I say all of this as a Brazilian user.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Not great, but watchable

Author: Rectangular_businessman from Peru
17 March 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Rio" it's a decent animated film for the whole family. It was directed by Carlos Saldanha (Who also co-directed the "Robots" and "Ice Age") Despite the immense amount of clichés and stereotypes that this movie had (Remember that episode from The Simpsons, "Blame it on Lisa"?) I enjoyed it: The animation is cute and colorful; personally I liked way more the designs of the birds than the designs of the human beings that just seem quite bland and generic. The same goes for their personalities: The birds were the most interesting (and funnier) characters from this movie, while all the humans (Including the main villain) were just boring, one-dimensional characters that were easily forgettable at best.

The voice acting from "Rio" was pretty good, and even when some of the jokes seem forced (Or borrowed from previous CGI films) the overall movie feels okay, being watchable from beginning to end. And also, it was much better than the "Ice Age" sequels.

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