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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

3-D animated captured-bird film charming, engaging for families

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Because Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) can’t fly, his new friends take him base jumping in the film Rio. Photo courtesy 20th Century Fox

By Mona Lisa Tucker/reporter

Blue Sky Studios’ animated 3-D film Rio is holding its own at the box office and could stand toe-to-toe with any of Pixar’s best. And this colorful and lively movie is suitable for the entire family.

Because Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) can’t fly, his new friends take him base jumping in the film Rio.
Photo courtesy 20th Century Fox

In the first scene, a beautiful baby Spix’s Macaw and other exotic birds are singing and getting their groove on one minute, then captured and smuggled from a jungle near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the next minute.

Then the crate containing the baby macaw is accidentally left on the street in Moose Lake, Minn., where a girl named Linda, voiced by Leslie Mann, finds and names the bird Blu.

All grown up, Linda moves into a bookstore with domesticated Blu, voiced by Jesse Eisenberg, who doesn’t know how to fly yet.

Tulio, an awkward scientist, voiced by Rodrigo Santoro, visits shy Linda and tells her Blu is on the brink of extinction, then talks her into taking Blu to Rio to mate with Jewel, a head-strong female macaw, voiced by Anne Hathaway.

During the night, the facility is raided by poachers who steal the rare birds. Although Blu and Jewel are chained together, they manage to escape into the nearby jungle.

The following day, they meet Rafael, a toucan voiced by George Lopez, who offers to take them to see a friend who could remove the chain.

Rafael and his kooky friends Pedro, a red-crested cardinal voiced by Will.i.am, and Nico, a canary voiced by Jamie Foxx, are plotting to help Blu and Jewel make a love connection.

Nico’s singing sets the mood, but when Blu get choked by a leaf, Jewel has to save his life, killing the moment.

Because Blu still hasn’t flown yet, they are traveling to their destination on top of a trolley.

Upon arrival at Luiz’s, a bulldog, played by Tracy Morgan, Blu and Jewel are strangely released from their chain by Luiz’s slobber.

All this is happening during Brazil’s Carnivale, which the smugglers hope to use as a shield to escape with the stolen birds.

Linda and Tulio get to Carnivale and pose as dancers, but Blu and his companions are captured there.

Thus, everyone involved must work together to save the birds.

Riois marvelously cast, and the singing is surprisingly pleasant. Everyone who worked on this film deserves a standing ovation because they chose one of the most beautiful cities in the world in for the setting of this story.

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