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Rio 2

Reviewed by: Emily Saur

Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Kids Family Teens Adults
Animation Kids Adventure Family Comedy Sequel
1 hr. 41 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
April 11, 2014 (wide—3,900+ theaters)
DVD: July 15, 2014
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Relevant Issues
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

tropical forest

EARTH’S ENVIRONMENT—Should Christians be concerned about the environment? Answer

What is man’s responsibility to the environment? Answer


birds in the Bible

endangered species and extinction


What is the Occult? Answer

THE OCCULT—What does the Bible say about it? Answer

Kid Explorers™
Adventures in the rainforestn about the Creator of the universe by exploring His marvelous creation. Fun for the whole family with games, activities, stories, answers to children’s questions, color pages, and more
Featuring: Anne HathawayJewel (voice)
Leslie MannLinda (voice)
Jesse EisenbergBlu (voice)
Jamie FoxxNico (voice)
Andy GarciaEduardo (voice)
George LopezRafael (voice)
Amandla StenbergBia (voice)
See all »
Director: Carlos Saldanha
Producer: Twentieth Century Fox Animation
Blue Sky Studios

See all »
Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Prequel: “Rio” (2011)

“Rio 2” picks up where “Rio” left off: Blu and his family are happy living life in Rio de Janeiro. All this is about to change when bird experts Tulio and Linda think they discover more Blue Spix Macaws in the Amazon. Jewel is excited and insists the family should go to the Amazon to unite with the other Macaws. Upon traveling to the Amazon and meeting the other Macaws, Blu feels very out of place and wants to return to Rio de Janeiro, but Jewel and the kids are happy there. Will the family be torn apart? Meanwhile, Tulio and Linda find themselves in the middle of an illegal logging plot. What will happen to them?

“Rio 2” can be great opportunity to teach kids about marriage, our call to protect God’s creation, and spirituality.

“Rio 2” opens with some partying involving alcohol (champagne) and suggestive dancing in front of the famous statue of Jesus, which seems a little disrespectful to me. However, parents can use this scene to tell kids that even in settings that seem hidden from Him, God is aware of what we are doing (Luke 12:3).

There is a lot of violence in the film; I think the movie should have been rated PG and only older kids should be taken to it. Creatures eat one another frequently, and there is a lot of talk about killing others by various means (poison and clawing are the most mentioned). One character implies that he wants to die. Blu’s kids try to launch their babysitter into the sky, but Blu stops them. One character gets hit by a dart and another attempts suicide.

There is some occult material in this movie, as well. One character has a job as a fortune teller, and another claims to foresee a future event. It is crucial that parents warn their children about the danger of the occult—even activities that simulate occult practices, as they can develop into actual occult practices, which is very dangerous to spiritual health (Acts 19:19; Deuteronomy 18:9-12; Galatians 5:19-21; Isaiah 8:19). God is offended when we consult other spiritual beings to find out information, such as fortunes, that He alone knows (Exodus 34:14).

There is a treasure trove of lessons about marriage in this movie; parents should teach these to their children and live them out in their own marriage. Both the human and bird couples show a devotion to each other and refusal to leave one another, even to the point they will leave behind their parent/owners. This reflects the biblical view of marriage and willing sacrifice very well (Matthew 19:5-7). Verbal communication is used to work out disagreements, which is an excellent model of a healthy marriage. One character tries to tempt Jewel with his attractiveness, but she stays faithful to Blu. This shows that marriage will not be without temptation, but God will give us the power to overcome (1 Corinthians 10:13). However, she does seem to reminisce about her childhood romance with him and enjoy herself in his company, so it is possible she committed adultery in her heart, which is a danger kids should be warned about (Matthew 5:28).

Women are respected and cherished by their husbands, as they should be (Ephesians 5:25), however one states “happy wife, happy life.” While husbands should love their wives sacrificially, we must keep in mind that God’s happiness is much more important, and it is Him we are here to serve.

There is also a good lesson in taking care of God’s creation. Tulio and Linda work very hard to protect the Macaws and the rain forest. This is a good example, because we are called to be good stewards of the Earth. God calls His creation good, and we were given the command to watch over it (Genesis 1:28).

Bad language is minor; one bird calls the humans “freaks,” one says “cheese and sprinkles” as a euphemism for using Christ’s name in vain. There is some potty humor as well.

Overall, “Rio 2” is chock full of lessons that parents can teach their kids, but I advise parents to only take children 9 and up for this film.

Violence: Moderate / Profanity: Minor / Sex/Nudity: Minor

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—This is a fantastic movie. Our family, with elementary-aged children, thoroughly enjoyed watching it together.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Robyn, age 35 (USA)
Neutral—I agree with the Christian Spotlight review on most points. I did grow extremely weary of the first half hour with it just being a rehash of “Rio">Rio 1” just to “set the characters”. And once the plot DID start to develop, we find that it did so at a slow and uneven pace.

For any of the subtle pro-marriage, pro-family bent that could be gleaned from the film, the pervasive violent content, overt “love songs” and excessive rap seemed to stick in the mind FAR more easily. And while I fully agree we are all called to be good stewards of His Kingdom and often fall short, I am weary to the bone from being repeatedly hit in the head with the message—in film after film, and zoo after zoo—about what an insufferable menace we humans are! Give that point a rest, already, filmmakers!

Subtle lyric undertones of peaceful coexistence are simply preaching to the proverbial choir: those needing this message will never see the movie.

While the filmmaking quality was generally good (they did botch some of the the aerial perspective in the beginning scene dolly-ins, however), IMO it definitely earns a PG given the repeated violent content (which will stick in the kid’s minds) and overshadowing the more subtle pro-family thread which, most likely, will be completely overlooked by most kids and maybe even some of the adults seeing the film.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3½
G.T., age 66 (USA)
Neutral—My main issue with this movie is Jewel’s lack of sensitivity and compassion to Bleu’s feelings. Happy wife equals happy life should not come at the husband’s expense. While the Bible calls men to treasure their wives, it also calls women to be a helpmeet and submit to their husbands. After the soccer game, when Bleu is honest with her about his feelings, Jewel tells him that he needs to start thinking more about the family and less about himself. When all he has been doing the whole movie is sacrificing for her and the kids. Throughout the movie she ignores and shuts Bleu down. When Jewel thinks that settling down permanently in the Amazon may be best for the kids, she doesn’t consider how her husband may feel. She just expects Bleu to agree with her. Jewel’s father and Roberto frequently push Bleu around.

I don’t find this movie to be a positive representation of marriage. Marriage should have honest communication between the husband and the wife. This movie seems to follow the media’s trend that the husband’s feelings don’t matter, and that the wife is always right. That marriage is one sided with the husband being the only party to make sacrifices.

An example of a healthy marriage and pro-family in a cartoon is the Babar animated series from the 80s. Babar and his wife work together like a husband and wife should.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 2½
Susie, age 27 (USA)
Negative—This sequel seems slapped together and a poor follow-up to “Rio.” It was very colorful, as was the first movie. However, the poor story line made this film drag on and on. My daughter begged us for weeks to see this movie. Even she was ready to leave half way through the film. We did like the fact that, in the end, the birds set aside their differences to work towards a common goal.
Overall, very bored through this film. I wish we had not spent the money to see this in the theaters. I wouldn’t even recommend it for purchase.
My Ratings: Moral rating: none / Moviemaking quality: 3
Tracy, age 45 (USA)
Comments from young people
Positive—I enjoyed this movie. It was very colourful and the music was upbeat. I think that it is a good movie to take kids to see, but they may find it a bit boring. My younger sisters did not like it and found it boring, but my younger brother and I liked it. It really depends on the type of movies you enjoy. It does drag on a bit, but I really like how the characters learn lessons about working together.

The only thing (that I can remember) that was a bit questionable was that Nigel (the villian) was determined to get revenge for his loss of flight. He plots to kill Blue. Also, in the Amazon when various creatures are performing for a show, they end up devouring each other (which may be a bit upsetting for younger children).

I personally think that this was better than the first “Rio,” so I recommend watching it if you liked the first.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 3
Shannon, age 17 (New Zealand)
Neutral—I would say that this movie was fine for younger children. I found it boring, but my little siblings enjoyed it! There was no language that I caught. There was also no immodesty, (which was heavy in the first movie) which was so nice for my younger brother. I think they were trying to make this movie a musical, and (personal taste) I wasn’t a big fan of all of their songs. Something that was a little disturbing was a scene where a bird was supposed to pick a card out of a box to tell someone’s fortune/future or something. Overall, nothing major wrong with it!
My Ratings: Moral rating: none / Moviemaking quality: 3½
Jamie, age 16

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