Rio is an animated feature film released in April 2011 from Blue Sky Studios, the makers of the Ice Age series. Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway lend their voices to Blu and Jewel, two rare blue macaws who become the target of smugglers wanting to sell them for riches. Directed by Carlos Saldanha, the movie spends the vast majority of its time in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. When it was launched in cinemas, 2D and 3D screenings were both available.
Early reaction has been mostly positive, with critics especially praising the film's charm and its vibrant setting. However, some have claimed that the narrative is overly predictable. Released on April 8, 2011 in the United Kingdom, Rio comfortably topped the box office chart ahead of the Duncan Jones sci-fi Source Code.
A domesticated and flightless blue macaw, Blu ( Jesse Eisenberg) lives in snowy Minnesota with his owner, Linda ( Leslie Mann). One day, scientist Tulio ( Rodrigo Santoro) enters the book store where Linda works and tells her that Blu is the last male of his species, and is desperate for him to come to Rio de Janeiro to mate with another blue macaw. Linda is initially resistant to the idea, but eventually obliges, and the three of them fly out to Rio.
Blu is forced into a cage by Tulio with Jewel ( Anne Hathaway), who Blu finds instantly attractive. Jewel isn't interested in the slightest in mating with him. During the night, Nigel the cockatoo ( Jemaine Clement), who works for a trio of smugglers, and Fernando ( Jake T. Austin), a hired orphan with little money, steal Blu and Jewel from the building. Fernando delivers the two blue birds to the smugglers. The leader of the group intends to sell the rare blue macaws for an obscene amount of money the following day on the night of the Carnival - however, though they are chained together and Blu cannot fly, Blu and Jewel manage to escape. Afterwards, Nigel is tasked with finding the two birds.
Meanwhile, Linda is devastated that Blu is gone, initially blaming herself and then Tulio for this. Linda and Tulio pin up 'missing' posters all over the area. Fernando, feeling guilty for stealing the birds, finds one of the posters and decides to help Linda reunite with Blu. He leads Linda and Tulio to the smugglers hideout, but there is no trace that the birds were ever there to begin with. Fernando speaks to two of the henchmen, who - faced with a tight deadline to deliver the currently missing birds - reveal that they are planning to blend in at the Carnival and ride a float to get to the airstrip on time. Fernando joins them as an inside man.
Blu and Jewel meet Rafael the toucan ( George Lopez), who says he can free them of the chains by taking them to Luiz ( Tracy Morgan). Rafael is mortified to learn that Blu hasn't learnt how to fly and insists that he has to follow his heart rather than his head. A failed attempt at flying sees Blu and Jewel end up on top of a hang-glider, where Blu for the first time appreciates the freedom of the skies and becomes jealous of everyone else who can fly.
In spite of Nigel's best efforts, the three birds and two other companions - canary Nico ( Jamie Foxx) and red-crested cardinal Pedro ( will.i.am) - make it to Luiz, a constantly drooling bulldog. Luiz removes the chains in an accidental manner, as his drool provides enough lubricant for the bonds to slip free. After growing upset that he can't enjoy the Carnival with his airborne friends, Blu gets into an argument with Jewel, and they part ways rather bitterly. Not long after the verbal fight, Jewel is captured by Nigel.
After finding out Jewel's predicament, Blu along with his friends go to the Carnival to rescue Jewel. However, all the birds are caught and put on an airplane. Linda and Tulio try to stop the smugglers' aircraft from taking off, but fail to do so. In the air, Blu leads an escape, freeing himself from his cage and then helping the others out. He opens the hatch, and everyone apart from Blu and Jewel fly to safety. Blu, still fearful of the fact that he can't fly, is extremely hesitant to jump off. At this moment, Nigel interrupts and injures one of Jewel's wings, rendering her flightless. Blu defeats Nigel, using a fire extinguisher to blast the cockatoo off the plane.
Jewel falls off the airplane, and now finding the courage, Blu jumps after her. He grabs her and they embrace as they are plummeting, before Jewel finally kisses Blu. Overcome by his heart, Blu flies for the first time, carrying Jewel to safety. They return to the airstrip where Blu is reunited with Linda. Their adventure over, Blu and Jewel live in the wild together and have three children, while Linda, Tulio, and Fernando are in close vicinity working to preserve the blue macaw species.