Soundtrack: If it is not quite right, it puts me off a movie like you have never seen. I am happy to report that "Rio" has definitely hit the mark. Whoever did the research was good at it and you will be able to hear a combination of English/ American songs as well as very traditional Brazilian styles like Samba and Bossa Nova. You will also hear all the well known songs assimilated to Brazil like "The Girl from Ipanema" and Black Eyed Peas' "Mas Que Nada".
Plot: The story is as solid as a kids' movie can be. Obviously, unlike the movie, there is no way a Samba School would put some unknown girl as the highlight of they allegoric car or that someone would be able to enter a random last minute display to this really though competition. Oh yes, make no mistake, Carnival is a competition in between Brazilian Samba Schools like a mini World Cup (to read more about it click here). On the other hand, I think they have pretty much nailed the very Brazilian "malandragem" (mischievousness), easy laid back "nothing is a problem" attitude and madness for partying. The Toucan family was most certainly very close to what a real Brazilian family is like!!! And the panoramic views are definitely true to the real thing. The humour is clever and adults will laugh at it too, unlike some kids' movies where, as an adult, you feel you are being tortured.
My favourite scene was the birds song at the beginning and the end. To me it shows exactly what it is: a Latin blood thing. It is also very true that you learn while still in the crib! I remember my dad teaching me how to dance by having me stand on his toes as soon as I learned to walk. My daughter had the same from my brother, sister and me.
In short, I would most definitely recommend it. If you feel a little odd going to watch a kids' movie without having children of your own... borrow a nephew, nice, cousin or neighbours' children to have an excuse to watch it. It is definitely worth the effort.
OUT OF CURIOSITY: If you liked this movie, you will also enjoy "The Incredibles" and "Rango".
Film Rating: *****
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