Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway

Everyone’s favourite geek, Jesse Eisenberg, as a bumbling parrot who can’t fly? Sounds like a cracking animated film. It’s not, unfortunately, thanks to a script that just isn’t funny enough to match heavyweights like Toy Story and Shrek.

At the centre of Carlos Saldanha’s movie is Blu (Eisenberg), a rare macaw who enjoys life as a spoilt pet in Minnesota. When he is flown to Rio to mate with
the only other surviving member of his species, Jewel (Hathaway), it sets in motion a series of events that sees Blu trying to find his owner on the streets of the Brazilian city.

As you would expect from a major animated feature, Rio is visually stunning – from the fluffy feathers on Blu’s tummy to the Rio carnival in all its gaudy brilliance. The vocal work is pretty good too, with Eisenberg’s awkward schtick working a treat in feather form and Hathaway ensuring that her alter ego is sassy and feisty.

With just about all the elements in place for a great film it comes as a letdown that Rio is so devoid of memorable visual gags, hilarious lines or clever pop culture references.


Good for: Kids and Eisenberg fans.

Watch the trailer for Rio here:




-Pierre de Villiers