Pretty much everything that a Disney/Pixar collaboration touches turns to gold – and they’ve done it again with another colourfully enchanting tale.
For anyone who’s been to Mexico land in Epcot’s World Showcase in Florida – this movie takes that Disney-based setting and gives it a musical pulse.
Aspiring young musician Miguel (Anthony Gonzalez) – baffled by his family’s generations-old musical ban – dreams of becoming as accomplished as his music idol Ernesto de la Cruz (Miss Congeniality’s Benjamin Bratt).
Miguel’s great-great grandmother Imelda – whose daughter Coco (Ana Ofelia Murguia) is still alive but in declining health – banned music in the family after her husband left her and her daughter to fend for themselves to pursue his own career. This left a sour taste in her mouth and has been supported by the family – who turned their hand to shoemaking – ever since, including Miguel’s parents.
But when Miguel inadvertently damages a photo of Imelda during some family festivities, it shows her husband holding Ernesto’s famous guitar – but with his face torn from the image.
Concluding that he’s Ernesto’s descendant, Miguel enters his mausoleum shrine and steals his legendary instrument – which propels him into the Land of the Dead.
As he aims to track down Ernesto – with the aid of his deceased relatives and a charming trickster (Gael Garcia Bernal’s Hector) – Miguel gets more than he bargained for as this beautifully-rendered world opens his eyes and reveals the truth to his family’s heritage.
But while this maybe isn’t a Pixar film that will satisfy the entire children’s age demographic – my nearly four-year-old son Joshua enjoyed it for the most part but probably preferred Cars 3 – there’s no denying there’s a tender and emotional story that unfolds to its melancholic musical backdrop, that is probably better suited to kids over the age of eight.
It might not linger in the memory like some other more obvious Pixar outings due to that, but it is still another truly inspiring entry – that also boasts arguably the most lifelike animation yet seen on-screen – that has oodles of charm.
And for that reason it’s well worth going loco for Coco.
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Voice Cast: Anthony Gonzalez, Gael Garcia Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Alanna Ubach, Ana Ofelia Murguia, Renee Victor, Jaime Camil, Sofia Espinosa & Edward James Olmos.
Running Time: 1 Hr 45 Mins
Directors: Lee Unkrich & Adrian Molina
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