Movie Title: Rio
Director: Carlos Saldanha
Starring: Voices of; Jessie Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro, George Lopez, Jamie Foxx, Will.i.am, Tracy Morgan and Jemaine Clement
Category: Animated, Family, Comedy
Moms of Faith Rating: 10 out of 10
Intro: Rio is a surprisingly original animated kids movie that is enjoyable for the whole family.
Review: First, I must say, I LOVED this movie. It catapulted itself into one of my top family movies. It has everything a Mom wants to see in a movie her kids will be seeing. There is a strong sense of loyalty, friendship, acceptance, and we see the main character, Blu (Jessie Eisenberg) overcome a very powerful fear in his life.
Without giving too much away, the film revolves around Blu. He is a macaw that was taken from the wild as a baby and raised in Minnesota-a loooong way from the tropics! LOL! However, he is not deprived of love and happiness in his unlikely environment. Everything gets flipped upside down though, when Blu has to take a trip to Rio to save his species! NO pressure! From the moment he arrives his life is forever changed. He learns a lot, overcomes obstacles and falls in love.
Rio is not only about Blu. The supporting characters are a major part of the success of this film. From the father figure Rafael (George Lopez) to the comical duo Nico (Jamie Foxx) and Pedro (Will.i.am)-HILARIOUS. Of course there are a few human characters that are prominent as well. Oh, and we cannot forget the “bad guy”, Nigel (Jemaine Clement)-an angry and bitter cockatoo.
There were a ton of positive elements in this film-not just what I mentioned earlier.
A few others that stood out for me were…
Rafael tells Blu that Carnival is not as appealing as his wife and kids. His family is his priority and it is played off in a GOOD way-not as if he is “tied down”. (Love this! Great message!)
Blu sacrifices his safety and overcomes a major fear in his life to save his love-Jewel (Anne Hathaway).
When a group of bad guys (monkey mafia) come to take Blu and Jewel, his new friends band together in unity to protect them.
The boy character, Fernando, starts out as one of the “bad guys” in the movie, however, he winds up confessing to a sin he committed and works to rectify his mistake.
On the negative side: There are not too many, but there are a few that must be mentioned. First, there is some mild potty humor-nothing outrageous, but none the less there. The film takes place in Rio during Carnival, so there are many scantily clad women (at the beach as well), and we see at least one man dress up in women’s clothing. Blu and Jewel fall from the sky and land on a bikini clad woman’s behind. A few other things that stood out are; mild booty shaking type dancing, the head monkey reacts a little questionably when a call phone vibrates under him, there is theft in the film, bad guys doing bad deeds, and there is a battle scene between the monkeys and birds.
One other thing that may be scary for younger viewers is Nigel-the main bad guy. He is not very nice-merciless in fact. He even has his “bad guy” song (which my husband thought was hilarious).
While nothing is “over the top”, there are a few areas you will want to use as an opportunity to talk to your kids.
Conclusion: Overall, I loved Rio and did not find any of the negative aspects to overshadow the positive elements of the film. The movie is funny, filled with great lesson opportunities and a sure winner in my book!