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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Children > Comedy > Computer Animation > Musical > Animals > Hoodwinked Too!: Hood Vs. Evil (2011/Weinstein/Anchor Bay Blu-ray 2D w/DVD)/Rio (2011/Fox Blu-ray 2D w/DVD)

Hoodwinked Too!: Hood Vs. Evil (2011/Weinstein/Anchor Bay Blu-ray 2D w/DVD)/Rio (2011/Fox Blu-ray 2D w/DVD)


Picture: B- & C+/B & C     Sound: B (Blu-rays) & B- (DVDs)     Extras: C/C+     Animated Features: C+



2011 will go down as the year the honeymoon for computer animated features ended.  Besides there simply being too many sequels, a live action problem, everyone seemed to go on automatic pilot to some extent at the same time.  Cars 2 ended Pixar’s run as critical darlings and though the dominant CG studio, less so, while second-place DreamWorks saw an even bigger disappointment in Kung Fu Panda 2, but they were not the only sequels.  The Weinstein Company gave us Hoodwinked Too!: Hood Vs. Evil which sank fast and barely had a theatrical run, while Fox delivered Rio (not to be confused with Rango) and though it was a hit, was not a breakout release.


Now both are on Blu-ray and issued ion the Blu-ray 3D format.  For now, we will look at the standard Blu-ray 2D editions.


Hoodwinked Too!: Hood Vs. Evil follows the 2005 hit that had its moments.  We recently reviewed its Blu-ray release at this link:





The sequel is more of the same, which is not a bad thing, but does not do much to add to what was not an awful first release and Hayden Panettiere replaces Anne Hathaway as Red nicely enough, but most of the voice cast is new, with only Glenn Close and Patrick Warburton returning.  What I can say is that this continues the feel of the first release, which is not easy, so fans and children should enjoy it, but there is only so many places they can go after the first release so do not have high expectations.  Extras include the bonus DVD, three Music Videos, Production Artwork, Storyboard Sequences and The Voices Of Hoodwinked Too! featurette.



Rio is from the makers of the Ice Age franchise and it is a mixed bag, starting off with one of the most shrill musical numbers in recent memory, but the story kicks in an is nothing we have not seen or heard before (birds lost, need to get back home, etc.) is also a love story of sorts (this is where Anne Hathaway went off to, joined by Jesse Eisenberg, George Lopez, Jamie Foxx and others) and is a somewhat energetic variant of that story.  However, it does not offer much more and the humor is more forced than it needed to be, certainly more so than any of the Ice Age features.


What I did like was the use of color, the humor that did not try so hard when we got that and that a different look and feel was achieved versus so many CG releases that it overcame some of its shortcomings.  This has some of the best color range of a non Pixar/DreamWorks CG release to date and the makers were too all over the place or this could have been the CG release of the year.  Now you can see for yourself.


Extras include the bonus DVD, BD Live interactive functions, Digital Copy for PC and PC portable devices, pocketBlu compatibility, Coloring With Rio app, Deleted Scenes, five Making Of featurettes, two Music Videos, Rio De JAM-erio Jukebox function, Postcards From Rio and The Real Rio.



The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image on Too! has some good shots, but is not any better than the previous release six years earlier, with some softness and motion blur, while the anamorphically enhanced DVD is weaker with more softness and color limitations, not to mention depth issues.  The 1080p 2.35 X 1 AVC @ 20 MBPS digital High Definition image transfer on Rio has some slight softness, but the color range and better overall CG animation technology make it look better overall, yet the anamorphically enhanced DVD is shockingly weaker than expected.


The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes on both Blu-rays are more evenly matched with good sonic soundfields, even if they are not necessarily superior overall mixes.  The DVD versions have Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes that are good for the lossy format, but no match for the DTS-MA on the Blu-rays.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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