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3-min read

Coco Movie Review: The Pixar Film Provides Audience With an Immersive Showcase of Mexican Culture

Coco deserves a watch for its apt and inclusive Mexican representation, family-love and a complete, tear-jerking feel-good factor. Corazón Contento.

Sameeksha | News18.com@s_dandriyal

Updated:November 24, 2017, 3:57 PM IST
Coco Movie Review: The Pixar Film Provides Audience With an Immersive Showcase of Mexican Culture
Image: Youtube/Disney Pixar

Animated films have always maintained the 'no-age' specific bar, often promoting the fact that the dynamic, unadulterated mind of a child knows the best solutions and it is the adults who have to come around. The 19th presentation from Pixar, Coco is no different as it bears the same, feel-good soul of the studio, though the presentation of the tale makes it stand out from the rest of the films produced by the company.

For the first time ever a culture as rich as that of Mexico has been portrayed so aptly and sans tweaking onscreen. The film feels like a love letter to the country, glorifying and building a heartwarming story around their rooted festival of Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead). Kudos to Disney for using its power to shape perceptions about the culture and traditions of a country that the US President wants to wall out to keep away 'murderers' and 'rapist'.

The central character in Coco is a 12-year-old Miguel (Anthony Gonzalez), who dreams of becoming a musician, much against the will of his music-hating Rivera family. While the entire family has a reason to hate this talent and see shoe-making more than their heritage, Miguel decides to participate in a talent hunt competition only to enter the land of the dead. He meets a trickster-musician named Hector( Gael García Bernal) and sets off to find out the real story behind his family's history in the Land of the Dead.

In an instant, the story might not seem fresh off the imagination tree, but it's the treatment that wins the heart here. The authentic and respectful portrayal of a cultural celebration like the Day of the Dead, is surely going to win the vote in Mexico and rich connect with the ancestors and 'it's all about your family' motto is going to strike a chord with the domestic audience here in India as well.

The emotional punch of Coco doesn’t come solely from a well-told story about family and remembrance from the vaunted animation studio. It comes from the representation of a culture that has either been a 'loyal' sidekick, a 'voluptuous' Latina, or a 'macho' amigo.

The years-long effort to bring Coco to screens made for a lot of firsts at Pixar. The picture is the studio's first title to focus on a specific culture, and it also involves a level of research not previously required of other films. It goes beyond the idea of the dominant, macho Mexican male and highlights the matriarchs of the land. And yet, the film is rooted in the past and rich heritage that help shape the identity of Mexico.

Throughout its run-time, the film doesn't lose its unique vibe or the feel-good factor that makes Pixar movies an endearing watch. Coco reveals the emptiness of celebrity culture, poignantly teaching kids to preserve and respect their ancestors while making adults realise that dreams and talent do need support to flourish.

The source of true creativity is so often personal and Lee Unkrich's inclusive Coco is a good example of that thought. The story’s sincere emotional resolution earns the sobs and Ernesto De La Cruz’s (Benjamin Bratt) catchy 'Remember Me' embodies the key theme in of the story: the importance of remembering loved ones both in life and beyond.

Coco deserves a watch for its apt and inclusive Mexican representation, family-love and a complete, tear-jerking feel-good factor. Corazón Contento.


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| Edited by: Sameeksha
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