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Rio 2 (3D)


Stars: Voices: Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Jemaine Clement, Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro, Kristin Chenoweth, Andy Garcia,, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Rita Moreno, Bruno Mars, John Leguizamo

Director: Carlos Saldanha

Back in Brazil, the gang's still here. Rare blue macaws Blu (Eisenberg) and Jewel (top-billed (!) Hathaway) now have three chicks, all adapted to city life. Jewel, who was born in the wild, hunts for nuts and despairs at the scene that greets her return. 'I-pods? TV? Pancakes? We're birds!' she wails.

But a chance to return Blu to his roots comes when their human friends, environmental explorers Linda and Tulio (Mann, Santoro) discover a hitherto-unknown flock of blue macaws in the heart of the Amazon rainforest.

Also back is evil cockatoo Nigel (Clement), still out to put an end to Blu, but now unable to fly. The Shakespeare-spouting villain sees a chance to put paid to his nemesis and, in company with his devoted poisonous frog (Chenoweth). who proves that Nigel isn't quite his own biggest fan, and a renegade tamandua (furry anteater), tracks the macaw quintet into the jungle.

Meanwhile, arriving at his destination by SatNav, Blu is quickly a fish (sorry, macaw) out of water in what proves to be Jewel's original tribe, and an object of scorn for her imperious father (Garcia), especially when the city boy scores a spectacular own goal in a quidditch-style war game between the macaws and a more conventionally coloured tribe of parrots.

"You've got to bird up,' Blue is told. 'You've got to emancipate yourself from civilisation.'

All concerned, however, most bird up together when money-grabbing humans move in to destroy the birds' habitat.

There's lots of noisy Busby Berkeley-style routines from myriads of birds and a funny song from the operatic frog, but it's tough to endow birds with personalities, and the problem is really no better addressed than in the first movie. However, two tortoises, who take half the film to complete a high five, are good for a laugh or two, and nature lovers will have fun identifying the various jungle creatures who pop in an out of the story. The film's brilliant colours are unfortunately considerably dimmed by 3D glasses.

David Quinlan

USA 2014. UK Distributor: 20th Century Fox. Colour by deluxe.
101 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: U.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 01 Apr 2014