ainbo: amazon princess
director: richard claus (the little vampire)
starring: yeni alvarez, lola raie, thom hoffman and bernardo de paula
REVIEWER: lyall carter
The epic journey of Anibo and her Spirit Guides, "Dillo" a cute and humorous armadillo and "Vaca" a goofy oversized tapir, who embark on a quest to save their home in the spectacular Amazon Rainforest.
With the school holiday slate pretty clear of kids films, Ainbo: Spirit of the Amazon steps up to fill the gap needed for parents needing to pop their kids in front of a screen for an hour or so. While the story has a great heart, a lot of adventure and a great message, the animation doesn’t hold up that well compared to the bigger studios.
Ainbo was born and grew up in the deepest jungle of the Amazon. One day she discovers that her homeland is being threatened. With the help of her spirit guides Dillo, a cute and humorous armadillo and Vaca, a heavy-set tapir, Ainbo embarks on a journey to save her homeland.
As she fights to save her paradise against the greed and exploitation by illegal miners, she struggles to reverse this destruction and the impending evil of the Yacaruna, the darkness that lives in the Amazon. Guided by her mother’s spirit, Ainbo is determined to save her land before it’s too late.
Narratively Ainbo: Spirit of the Amazon plays like so many animated kid’s films of its ilk: crazy adventure with a solid heroine Moana like character accompanied by quirky animal characters.
Just like in Moana, Ainbo is told from the perspective of indigenous characters which is something that must be applauded. There is more than enough here to keep kids entertained for an hour and a half.
While the ecological messaging is a great one, it slightly changes focus during the film leaving it to feel a little muddled. The animation doesn’t particularly hold up to the scrutiny of Pixar, Laika or Illumination’s quality of animation, but it's still a decent enough effort creating an entertaining and thoughtful film.
While the story has a great heart, a lot of adventure and a great message, the animation doesn’t hold up that well compared to the bigger studios.