Chico and Rita

Director: Tono Errando, Javier Mariscal and Fernando Trueba
Year Released: 2010
Rating: 2.0

A skilled piano player, Chico, becomes intimately involved with a lovely chanteuse, Rita, in pre-Castro Cuba, they both end up in the United States (him to work with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie and her to work in Hollywood) and eventually their 'relationship' falls completely apart once he's sent back to his homeland on a bogus drug charge. The artwork is always lovely (though the animation can be choppy in parts) and the music is pleasant, but the core problem is the 'great romance' that's supposed to exist between the two main figures: not only are they (literally) shallow cartoon representations, but I was never convinced either was as in love with each other as with their respective careers (both have numerous love affairs along the way as well), so their eventual reunion doesn't have the impact it should. The 'criticism' of Castro-era Cuba is certainly half-hearted.