Evidently blue macaws are an endangered species. Did you know that? I didn't, but our sweet animated story hinges on that little-known fact.

We begin in the South American jungle 20 years ago when we see a baby blue macaw fall from his nest before he is fully fledged. From that experience, Blu is convinced that he can't fly. He doesn't understand that he was simply too young when he was captured and smuggled to Minnesota, where happily, he became the friend and confidant of a little girl who grows into a young woman who runs a book store. They are inseparable.

Enter the villain! A well-meaning young man comes into the bookstore and spies Blu. He instantly understands how vital this young male blue macaw is for the continuation of the species. He tries to talk the reluctant young woman into taking Blu to Brazil, where Jewel, a young female blue macaw, has been captured.

Through a series of events, we now watch our hapless characters end up, against their better judgment, in Brazil with Jewel. Naturally it is time for Carnivale in Rio de Janeiro, which provides the animators with many colorful and tuneful opportunities to strut their stuff.

There are dastardly villains (smugglers of exotic pets) and evil marmo- sets; a samba-flavored Carnival parade; a pair of very dim thugs, one of whom delighted the youngsters in the audience because he doesn't understand "Rock, Paper, Scissors" and is constantly cheated; plus a very relatable crisis of confidence because our earth-bound hero still believes he can't fly. (Remember "Dumbo" and his magic feather?)

The two blue macaws are capably voiced by Anne Hathaway ("Love and Other Drugs") and Jesse Eisenberg ("The Social Network"), while the rest of the star-studded cast is also excellent. I won't list them here but they're terrific.

Other than the three-year-old girl in my row (why do parents constantly misjudge their children's ability to comprehend a basic story line, even though it is PG?), the children six years old and up had a great time. I enjoy watching an audience enjoy itself.