Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
Watch On
  1. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Feb 22, 2012
    88
    The music is terrific. Idania Valdes dubs Rita's sensuous, smoky singing voice, and the film is essentially constructed as a musical.
  2. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Feb 10, 2012
    88
    Chico and Rita beguiles first and foremost as a bebop romance that evokes a bygone era as well as, or maybe even better than, "The Artist."
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Mar 1, 2012
    63
    A likable but cliched star-crossed romance set along the post-WWII Havana-New York jazz axis, the Spanish-made film features terrific music, passable artwork, and characters who stubbornly refuse to become more than sketches.
  4. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Mar 15, 2012
    75
    An intoxicating, world-class collaboration between a filmmaker (Spain's Fernando Trueba), two artists (designer Javier Mariscal and animator Tono Errando) and a musician (Cuban pianist/bandleader Bebo Valdés).
  5. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Feb 9, 2012
    80
    Sexy, sweet and laced with a sadness at once specific to its place and time and accessible to anyone with a breakable heart, Chico & Rita is an animated valentine to Cuba and its music.
  6. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Feb 9, 2012
    90
    This is the kind of sophisticated storytelling you rarely get even in live-action movies any more, full of unexpected turns and unruly human complications.
  7. Reviewed by: J.R. Jones
    Feb 23, 2012
    70
    The rudimentary 2-D animation doesn't allow for much character nuance, and the story isn't exactly fresh. But directors Fernando Trueba (Calle 54), Javier Mariscal, and Tono Errando conjure up some vibrant set pieces.
  8. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Mar 22, 2012
    75
    Every decade or so, someone proves animation can tell a serious adult story.
  9. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Feb 9, 2012
    90
    A dazzling and delightful work of modernist animation, a classic movie romance and a hip-swinging, finger-popping tale of musical revolution, Chico & Rita is the first big serendipitous surprise of 2012.
  10. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    Mar 29, 2012
    91
    It's hot and sweet and made with inspiration and cheek. And it is not your children's animated fare -- which, in this case, is a recommendation.
  11. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Apr 6, 2012
    88
    When a place and its people are this stylish, we can't help but be drawn to them.
  12. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Apr 14, 2012
    80
    It's called Chico & Rita, but their film could just as easily have been titled "Chico & Cuba." In both cases, it's a film are about a long-lost love, and in both cases it is steeped in such a pitch-perfect sense of place -- and affection -- that you can almost smell the cigar smoke as it unfolds.
  13. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Feb 7, 2012
    83
    You've never seen anything like Chico & Rita, simply because that jubilant palette and likeminded jazz soundtrack embraces its predictability with such vitality.
  14. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Mar 8, 2012
    90
    This is definitely animation for grown-ups - its look is voluptuous, sexy and sultry; its Latin-inflected Dizzy Gillespie sound is seductive; and its story of young lovers whose passions are tested is timeless.
  15. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Feb 8, 2012
    91
    The characters are simply rendered, but when it comes to capturing cities and scenes, the cinematography takes on the color and detail of a Mexican street mural.
  16. Reviewed by: Walter Addiego
    Feb 16, 2012
    75
    The film boasts an original score by Cuban pianist and composer Bebo Valdés, who was featured in "Calle 54."
  17. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    Feb 15, 2012
    85
    The picture's real achievement though, is the warmth it brings to the music that animates the lives of these Afro-Cuban characters.
  18. Reviewed by: Stephen Farber
    Feb 3, 2012
    80
    It's a pleasure to surrender to the movie's lush visuals, which are accompanied by wonderful jazz classics performed by Valdes, Estrella Morente, and Freddy Cole (Nat King Cole's brother), among many others.
  19. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    Feb 3, 2012
    80
    A delightful blend of hand-drawn animation and CG style that'll be soul food for hopeless romantics everywhere.
  20. Reviewed by: Fiona Morrow
    Feb 9, 2012
    75
    This sexy, pulpy, very grown-up film is not your usual best animated feature material.
  21. Reviewed by: Michelle Orange
    Feb 7, 2012
    70
    The result has only a loose resemblance to Valdés's story - though real-life figures including Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Chano Pozo, and a Cuban songstress who bears some resemblance to Rita Montaner are featured as characters - but it's a dazzling thing to behold.
User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 17 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 4
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 4
  3. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Mar 2, 2012
    10
    A proof that animated films are not just for kids but for adults as well. This is the film that should have won the Oscar for Best AnimatedA proof that animated films are not just for kids but for adults as well. This is the film that should have won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature. I like Rango but it wasn't anything spectacular compared to this. Pretty much one of the best romantic films I have ever seen. It's portrayal of the early 50's is breathtaking, its design is unique, the animation, though simple, is full of life and energy and allows the simplest facial expression become a legit emotional feeling, the two leads are realistic, charming, complex and have an unrivalled chemistry and the music is authentic and timeless. I honestly couldn't see this as a live action film as it wouldn't capture the emotion and expression that the animation allows into the love story. I am in love with this film. Great story, great characters, great animation, great music. If you love romance films, don't ever pass this up on DVD. Full Review »
  2. Lyn
    Jan 20, 2013
    10
    It's hard to explain how a Spanish-language film featuring not-that-sophisticated animation could be so utterly captivating. The music helps,It's hard to explain how a Spanish-language film featuring not-that-sophisticated animation could be so utterly captivating. The music helps, of course, and the way the star-crossed Cuban lovers evoke another time. I thought of "Calle Ocho," "The Mambo Kings" and "An Affair to Remember." Loved it. Full Review »
  3. Feb 14, 2012
    9
    I may not be very stunned by this movie as i was from a foreign animated movie with "The Illusionist" but this still was extremely dazzling,I may not be very stunned by this movie as i was from a foreign animated movie with "The Illusionist" but this still was extremely dazzling, amazing and quite charming movie. An adult animated movie with a classic romantic story over the span of life time and places with deep cultural roots and lovely jazz dazzle to it, this is a good movie to watch. Full Review »