Rio ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Director: Carlos Saldanha. Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Jamie Foxx, Anne HathawayThomas F. Wilson, Jake T. Austin.

I had seen this before when it was first release back in 2011 but I could hardly remember anything aside from the fact that the 3D was sumptuous. So it was picked up by the family as the one to watch for “movie night”, my expectation levels were set pretty low.

Actually I was pleasantly surprised, not just by how charming it was, but mainly by how good it looked. A real feast of music and colours! Right from the opening song, through to a scene towards the end which takes place during the Carnival of Rio and which is absolutely stunning, both in terms of animation (beautifully choreographed) and its vibrant details.

It may not have the emotional depths of any of the Pixar from the time (Up was only released 2 years before this), nor the classic fairy tale vibe of Tangled from Disney or the Miyazaki magic, but it’s certainly miles better than “Puss with Boots” which for some reason won the Oscar that year.

Jesse Eisenberg works surprisingly well as the slightly awkward bird in complete contrast with Anne Hathaway’s spirited and wild performance. The action sequences, however frantic, are always clear and nicely directed and on the whole however predictable the overall trajectory is, the film rattles along with joyful energy without any bumps along the way. It’s probably not quite a 4 star film… but after the travesty of Spongebob the Movie: Sponge on the run (which we watched last night… and I’ll spare you from reviewing it), this feels like Citizen Kane.

My 8 years old boy seemed to enjoy it a lot, so I guess we’re in for the sequel very soon.

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