“Rio 2” dives back into the charmingly animated and music entwined jungles of Brazil. Resuming where the first left off, the film has a world already built for those familiar to return to, but it’s missing the spark that made the first so charismatic.
Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) and Jewel (Anne Hathaway), a couple of rare Macaw’s, are back, along with a few new editions. They have matured their relationship into a family with three baby birds. The young family is thrown out of whack when they travel to the Amazon with their owners, who are searching for a special species of Macaw.
Throughout this journey Jewel discovers her father among this exceptional tribe of birds they’ve been looking for, and Blu suddenly is out of his element and desperately searches to find a way to fit in with his wife’s family while dealing with some old friends and enemies.
A movies success doesn’t always warrant a sequel. “Rio” (‘11) wasn’t the most innovative of films, but it provided a strong narrative and a charismatic use of animation. The gap between the two movies definitely makes the comparison of the two films easier to see and the sequel just doesn’t hold up.
The animation and voice acting are just as wonderful as the first film, but that is the entire short list of positives this film holds. It’s muddy plot turns it into a train without tracks, forcing it to stray too much off any kind of direction.
Rio 2 tries to recapture a fun and livid environment, but ends up with a dull follow-up and a story that with no focus.
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