Do you want to add some colour in you life this summer? Do you want to dazzle in a thousand hues of a thousand birds? Do you want to rollick in laughter while simultaneously being touched by the one of kind love story of two birds? Do you want to enjoy the summer with your kids? Then rush quickly to a nearest theater and catch the recent animated flick, ‘Rio’ which will leave all your senses piqued! ‘Rio’ is undoubtedly another superb film churned out by the Blue Sky Studios that will be loved by all kids and adults too.
The storyline is simple yet good enough to appeal to older audiences as well as be understood by the younger toddlers and preschoolers. It begins with a baby Macaw being trapped in the poacher’s net in the tropical rain forests and then being taken to Minnesota, America in a truck. By sheer luck, this blue macaw’s cage falls down and is noticed by a girl,Linda, who then adopts it and takes care of it. They both become good friends and are always by each others side. Linda names the bird,’Blu.’ Blu (voice by Jesse Eisenberg) learns quickly, adapts to the different environment but what he can’t do is fly like a bird. Surprisingly, he prefers to walk! One fine day, an ornithologist, Tulio, from Brazil comes at Linda’s bookshop to tell her that Blu is the last male blue macaw on earth and in his research center is the last female macaw bird, ‘Jewel’ (voice by Anne Hathaway) and these two birds must meet in order to save their species from extinction. At first, Linda is reluctant to leave Blu because she has never left him alone but later she feels it’s the right thing to do and then goes to Rio. Blu meets Jewel in the research center and realises that Jewel is one strong, spirited bird who loves to fly and hates humans who have always caged her and snatched from her true habitat. Tulio and Linda leave the two birds in the enclosure hoping they will be able to gel together. However, the unthinkable happens! Both Blu and Jewel get stolen by smugglers and from there on begins Linda’s search for her beloved Blu and Blu and Jewel’s struggle to escape and their fondness and liking for each other. Will Linda be able to find her blue macaw and will Blu and Jewel escape the poacher’s net and fall in love? Watch this 3D animated film to find out what happens next.
‘Rio’ is a complete paisa vasool. It’s a visual delight and not just because it’s in 3D but because of the breathtaking animation that effortlessly transports the audience in the stunning and resplendent world of the Brazilian birds. The first scene of the film itself starts with a colourful song wherein the all the birds are happily singing and dancing and displaying their vivid, vibrant,fancy feathers! It sets the tone for the rest of the film as it gets the audience grooving in their seats and waiting for more such visual treats. And the film does not disappoint in that. All scenes have a flurry of colours-be it the birds or the famed carnival of Rio de Janiero! The animation brings the city and its birds alive for the audience.
The voice given by the different actors and actresses are awesome too. The protagonists’voices obviously steal the show but other characters too add to the film like Will.i.am voicing a cardinal bird,Pedro, who raps and helps Blu to escape. Then there is George Lopez who gives voice to a toucan,Rafael, who helps out Blu when it comes to expressing his love to Jewel. There are other equally interesting bird characters like the evil Nigel, a cockatoo who is an accomplice to the smugglers in Rio. Then there is the yellow canary,Nico, who is a friend of Pedro, voiced by Jamie Foxx. All in all its a fabulous ensemble of voices that blend in well to allow the movie to take flight!
The story is a tad bit predictable and slightly mushy at times with an obvious good over evil triumph ending yet this animated flick can create a love for animals, in particular birds and create awareness about the rampant poaching of these birds to people who either want to eat them or keep them as exotic birds. Perhaps, even if one kid or anyone else who watches this film and says to himself that s/he wants to dedicate himself to curbing this poaching menace would mean that the film has gone beyond just proffering entertainment and has helped educate the audience too. This is a great advantage of most Pixar/Blue Sky Studios animated films- they teach some good lessons to kids apart from entertaining them as well. The film also highlights the love between the pet owner and the pet, the feelings that the birds in general and the two blue macaws in particular share which again helps to teach people the importance of valuing animals as humane and not dumb creatures devoid of feelings.
‘Rio’ is yet another first rate, admirable animated film that is sure to delight audiences of all ages with its exquisite animation and attention to detail, simple, touching story and bouts of hilarious humour and jokes and catchy samba tunes interspersed in between. A must watch! Don’t forget your 3D glasses!
Movie reviewed by Aakanksha Singh. She reviews books in her blog Book Cafe. To visit her blog, click HERE