Prepare yourselves for 96 minutes of full and fun entertainment- adventure, comedy, fun, romance and little bit of action as well- Rio has it all! Produced by Blue Sky Studios and directed by Carlos Saldanha, this animated film is set, as its title suggests, in the Brazilian city, Rio de Janeiro. While the original theatre going film was released in 3D, the DVD version of Rio is equally as captivating in its portrayal of Blu, a blue baby Spix’s macaw, and his adventures.

Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) is the product of a failed smuggling attempt. After being rescued and raised by Linda (Leslie Mann) in Minnesota after she finds him in a box lying on the road, Blu begins leading a life atypical to most of his other feathered friends. As he was smuggled as a baby, who hadn’t learnt to fly, Blu never thinks about flying high into the sky in the years that follow. Instead he remains a flightless bird with intimate knowledge of the tricks of human life and of physics as well (surprising, but yes he does!). He knows how to open a locked cage, how to walk, how to open a soda can and so many others.

Blu is forced to return to his birthplace when Túlio (Rodrigo Santoro), a Brazilian ornithologist, insists he mate with Jewel (Anne Hathaway) and save his species from extinction. Thus the story of Blu, the flightless bird, who prefers being home with Linda in his cage with his veil and little swing, who is forced out into the real world and facing real dangers. The plot is complicated by the beautiful Jewel, who longs to escape and be able to fly freely in the sky forever. Evading the smugglers and, Nigel (Jemaine Clement) the mean cockatoo, the story follows Blu and Jewel’s travels, the problems that arise, the friends and enemies they make along the way and the little funny incidents, characteristic of this animation genre.

This is a story about overcoming your fears, believing in yourself and ultimately taking the bold step to be and do something different.  Blu, who has not flown for 15 years, is always scared of plunging into the open air and letting his wings guide him. When he managed to do that, I couldn’t help but smile. Blu encapsulates the notion that everyone has their own skills and talents. Though he’s not able to fly, it is Blu’s knowledge of the other things that make all the difference.

There are some parts of Rio that will literally make you laugh out loud and some that will make you make you go ‘aawwww’. The distinctly Brazilian setting offers a glimpse to their rich cultural heritage. The samba beats will make you dance in your seats while the beautiful carnival and the floats are bound to take your breath away. You won’t realize how soon the one and half hour has passed.

With no surprise plot twists Rio remains a sweet story of the birds’ adventures in Brazil. It’s simple and ever pertinent messages of individuality, trust and freedom make it a good watch for both the children and adults alike; you should not miss this movie!


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