If there is one thing I’ve learned over the past 22 years is that never doubt Pixar. When first hearing about their latest installment, Coco, I was not as excited as I usually am for a Pixar film. I, for one, have grown tired of the sequels to the already established Pixar franchises and much prefer their original content. 2015’s Inside Out was a perfect example of Pixar’s brilliance when focusing on an original story. The film was one of the years best and a beautiful tale of youth and the acceptance of all emotions. After Coco concluded, I summed up three things,
1) Never doubt Pixar again
2) It’s winning Best Animated Feature at the Oscars.
3) Coco is a groundbreaking film for the Latino community.
The film’s release was filled with controversy as on release week, John Lasseter, one of Pixar’s founders and its Chief Creative Officer, announced that he was taking a formal leave of absence from the company after “missteps” that made employees feel “disrespected or uncomfortable.” Along with the Lasseter news, Rashida Jones, who recently left Toy Story 4, released a statement clarifying that she did not back out of Toy Story 4 because of an incident with Lasseter, but rather, creative differences, because Pixar is “a culture where women and people of color do not have an equal creative voice.”
While this was not the news that Disney and Pixar wanted out on the week Coco was released, it did not stop the film but garnering critical and financial acclaim. Quite frankly, Coco is one of my favorite films of 2017. For those unaware, Coco is first ever filmed with an all-Latino voice cast.
Coco tells the story of Miguel, a young aspiring musician, whose family has banned music from being played or performed in their home. On El Dia De Los Muertos, Miguel enters a magic portal that allows him to enter the afterlife, where he meets his deceased family members, along with a cameo from Frida Kahlo. From the moment Miguel enters the afterlife, we are treated some of the most breathtaking visuals of the year.
As a Cuban-American, it was a pleasant sight to see an all Latino-Voice cast in a Disney film. While not Mexican as the representation in the film is, the all-Latino cast was a breakthrough for the entire community and aided to the film’s authenticity. Anthony Gonzalez as Miguel was spot on with his portrayal. Along with his performance, the music within the film is great with “Remember Me“, a possible Best Original Song nominee.
As always with Pixar, the finale of Coco is a tearjerker as it is an emotional conclusion to a story about family and the importance of respecting the dead even after they are gone. The film falls in line with some of Pixar’s best films and is an absolute must watch for any fan of film especially the Latino community. Coco gives the community more reason to be proud to be Latino.
Reel Talk gives Coco 4 reels