214th Movie Review: Rio

Rio

As spectacular as the city itself

Starring: Jessie Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Jamie Foxx, Jane Lynch, Will.I.Am., Leslie Mann

[warning: contains minimal spoilers]

Rio, a movie set in a beautiful city of the same name, is also one of the most original and most colorful movies I’ve seen in a while. It didn’t have an amazing story and you won’t be laughing non-stop, but Rio benefited from its well-rounded voice cast, wonderful setting and engaging characters.

This movie achieved something that Zack Snyder couldn’t do: introduce anthropomorphic characters of different variations conveying different emotions as easily as possible. You could expect that since they are the makers of Ice Age. Not only were they able to show clear emotions, they were also able to make them as CUTE and COLORFUL as possible.

The characters’ cuteness were fused with the wonderful dubbing of Jessie Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway, and…I didn’t know Ms. Hathaway could sing! And although the movie is centered on birds, my favorite character was Fernando, a boy from Brazil that lives alone above the roof of another family’s house. His story was kind of touching, and it made me contemplate for a while how the movie was able to include the issue of poverty and poaching without making it too serious and gloomy.

The scenery was amazing. The references to Rio De Janeiro made the film’s setting look like the actual city. It was almost a perfect 3D conversion of the place, with the beach, the para gliders, and don’t forget…Christ the Redeemer. The animation reminded me of How To Train Your Dragon, though that film is still a couple of notches better than this movie.

Animated films usually have pop culture references, and it sometimes becomes detrimental to the quality of the film (much like Shrek 3). However, instead of making the film worse, the references used here actually complemented the film. It wasn’t too much and it wasn’t too little. It was just right.

Even though I wasn’t exactly in a LOL moment while watching the movie, it had some great parts, and it never felt draggy at all. The musical numbers were interesting enough to make me wanna dance and party in Brazil, and the battle scene between the birds and the monkeys felt like a modified angry birds video.

I’m not going to talk about what happened in the movie anymore. All you need to know is that Rio is an exciting and colorful thrill ride from start to finish. From the opening musical score to the marvelous grand parade up to the final showcase as the credits roll, Rio was a non-stop celebration like no other.

GRADE: B

P.s. In case you were wondering how I managed to see this before the US release, that’s because it opened here in the Philippines on April 7.

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