Coco

Coco

Coco

2017.  Directed by Lee Unkrich.  

By Brian Wallinger. 

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Disney's most recent animated film is without doubt a very inspiring and detailed experience that kids and adults will rejoice over. It is a story that explores the concept of death in a very heavy handed, yet also delicate way. It is also a visually stunning and transformative undertaking, making it (in my opinion) the best animated film of the year.

The story takes place in Mexico on a night of celebration.  A family is participating in the "Day Of The Dead"; paying respects to their lost loved ones, when young Miguel (voiced by Anthony Gonzalez) somehow finds himself on the other side among the spirits and is lead on a quest to find his forgotten ancestors in order to bring himself back to life and hopefully healing his divided family in the process.

The film boasts a very utilized and immensely vibrant animated universe, made up of hundreds of thousands of images and lights that work together frame by frame in a way that isn't cheap or cluttered.   Overall, the ensemble of voice actors provides a sound performance, though at times it feels a little bland.  There are instances; especially in the middle act as the plot unfolds, that it tends to become predictable though still it manages to keeps its wit and charisma. The music, provided by Michael Giacchino, is also quite intriguing and very engaging. 

Coco is a very original and bold film that aims high and hits its mark, paying tribute to the diverse culture of Mexico  by embracing its traditions. It is also a film that creatively examines the concepts of both life and death in a way that children will understand. This is a film not to be missed.

☆☆☆ 1/2

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