Movie Review: COCO (No Spoilers)

By Angel

Movie Description: “Aspiring musician Miguel, confronted with his family’s ancestral ban on music, enters the Land of the Dead to find his great-great-grandfather, a legendary singer.”

Story

Coco blew me away; I laughed, I cried, I sang, and I absolutely loved this story with all my heart. The plot is set in Mexico with Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) as a backdrop, which is a Mexican holiday to honor the dead. The way they expressed this culture was absolutely beautiful and had me engaged the entire time. It made me think about my loved ones, the ones I still have in my life and the ones I’ve lost, which is why Coco was so powerful as a narrative. All the characters were amazing, they aren’t stereotyped which I was relieved to see.

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The conflict was immensely intriguing, they’re a family of shoemakers that have sworn off music due to the families negative experience with a musician.  This attitude towards his dream prevents him from embracing who he really is as a person. He decides he’s meant for something else and wants to seize his moment although no one believed in him. I wanted Miguel to succeed in achieving his goal of becoming a musician. He was talented and his ambition was inspiring, which is why I connected to him so strongly. There are twists in the movie that had me surprised. The main antagonist is cliché for Pixar, but it’s still executed excellently. Through his journey in the real world and the Land of the Dead, Miguel discovers the true importance of celebrating music and family.

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Cinematography

To me, great cinematography is when the visuals are contributing to the storytelling. A film should SHOW us what’s going on rather than tell us. When it comes to analyzing cinematography, simply, I ask myself, “Was this film nice to look at?” Then I can choose to get in depth and look for whether colors were symbolic, placement of characters in the frame, composition, lighting, shadows, and point of view.

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Was COCO a nice film to look at….ABSOLUTELY. It’s one of the most gorgeous movies of 2017. The animation and colors are breathtaking. The filmmakers were able to establish the spirit world as this realm of warmth and harmony. It was a positive outlook on death that I’ve never seen before and honestly kind of hope it’s really like that. The lighting is masterful and gives the entire movie a magical glow. The miracle bridge is just stunning.

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Performances

All the actors that provided their voice did an exceptional job at portraying their roles They brought their characters to life, which allowed me to care so much for these fictional people. Without their great acting, the characters wouldn’t be represented as perfect as they were.

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Music

The songs are still in my head because they were so lovely. The music emotionally compelled me, it was so enchanting and enjoyable that it was impossible to not sing along.

Message

The lessons I got from Coco: Music is powerful, no one is really gone if you remember them, have faith in your dreams, family comes first.

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Overall

Coco was incredible! The story was full of heart, characters were lovable, conflict was exciting, the cinematography was jaw-dropping, music was sensational, and the theme was wonderful. I’m ecstatic that Pixar has brought representation to Mexicans in this perfect movie. See this on the biggest screen you can and thank you for reading my review! My rating for this movie is 10/10 🙂

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Grade: A+

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