Fast Five

The most furious load of bollocks yet. Amazing.


Love him or hate him, it's hard to resist Russell Brand's manic charm. Which of course just makes you hate him even more.

Scream: The Video Game

Experience the sheer terror of the Scream franchise through the medium of an MS-DOS text game.

Your Highness

Works best if you're as wasted as the cast. Puerile, filthy fun.

Home Videos: Ace Ventura

Hawaiian shirts, gravity-defying hair and a cross-dressing Ray Finkle? Alrighty then!


If it's an advert for Angry Birds, it's a good one.

Source Code

Confidently mainstream with real sci-fi smarts. A cracking caper on a train.

Bored on the Train?

Inspired by Source Code, here's a movie guide to make any train journey more exciting.


A glass and a half empty production. Hop aims for Cadbury goodness but winds up closer to Hersheys chocolate.

BlogalongaBond: Thunderball

Thunderball and Never Say Never Again teach us How to Remake a Bond Film

Star Ratings

Well good


iFlicks on Twitter

Home Reviews Cinema Review: Rio
Review: Rio Print E-mail
Written by Ivan Radford   
Monday, 04 April 2011 18:17
Director: Carlos Saldanha
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Leslie Mann
Certificate: U

If there's one thing we all know about Rio, it's that it isn't the capital of Brazil. It isn't. No, put your hand down, it isn't. It's Brasilia - that's why all those kids got killed in I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. The other thing we all know about Rio is that it's an Angry Birds game, created to advertise the animated kids film. Or maybe the kids film is an advert for the new Angry Birds game. Whichever way round it goes (think chicken and egg - with an angry chicken), the important thing is this: Rio is good. But not as good as Angry Birds.

First up, Blu (Eisenberg) isn't very angry. Instead, he's domesticated, neurotic and can't fly. But the pretty blue macaw is the last male of his species, which is why conservation worker Tulio turns up and begs his owner Linda (Mann) to take Blu to Rio where he's meant to rustle the feathers of female macaw Jewel (Hathaway). But just as Blu tries to get beaky with it, he's whisked away by kidnappers and locked in a cage.

Enter Nigel, an evil cockatoo played by Jemaine Clement from Flight of the Conchords. He's white, ugly and brilliant at terrifying children. Plus he gets a song. And it's a great song, featuring such inspired lyrics as 'I poop on people and blame it on seagulls' and 'Like an abandoned school / I have no principles'. A former showbiz cockatoo with a maniacal cackle, Nigel is flat-out the best thing in the whole film.

Not that he has much competition in the animal kingdom: and Tracy Morgan turn up for no reason, George Lopez is distracting as a veteran street-smart puffin, but Nigel's only real contender is Jesse Eisenberg. The Social Network star's a good fit for the angsty male lead (Mark Zuckerbird?) and gets a few good lines while Anne Hathaway is sassy but underused. They spend the whole film handcuffed together - a sign of the predictably average storyline that Carlos Saldanha has come up with.

A pet (ahem) project for the Ice Age director, Rio is mediocre for much of its middle. The plot mostly involves chase sequences, all of which end up where they started. The chaotic streets look good on screen, but as soon as someone mentions the city's Carnivale celebrations, you know where the climax is going to take place. Fortunately, the whole thing bursts with vibrant colour and sound - it's fun just listening to John Powell go bananas on the bongos in the background - and there's a healthy amount of pick-pocketing monkeys. Plus for fans of 3D there's a solid little hang-gliding sequence halfway through. It's hardly How to Train Your Dragon, but Nigel is as menacing as any fire-breathing monster. When the Conchord is on screen, Rio really takes flight.


With its violent villain and wonderful plumage, Rio is a fair family specimen. If it's an advert for Angry Birds, it's a good one.



What did you think?

( 1 Vote ) 


  • anne hathaway
  • carlos saldanha
  • george lopez
  • ice age
  • jesse eisenberg
  • leslie mann
  • rio

Add your comment

Your name:
Your email:
  The word for verification. Lowercase letters only with no spaces.
Word verification: