Coco (2017)


  • Directed by Lee Unkrich, Adrien Molina
  • Starring Anthony Gonzales, Gael Garcia Bernal, Benjamin Bratt
  • Written by Adrien Molina, Matthew Aldrich
  • Animated, Family, Comedy
  • Rated PG
  • 1hr 45mins
  • 21 November 2017


Miguel, a boy who loves music even though he lives in a family where music is forbidden, takes a trip to the land of the dead after a fateful accident on El Día de los Muertos. In order to get home, he must have his dead relatives make a deal and give him their blessing. However, when their blessing comes with a condition, he decides to search out someone from his family that will send him home and let him live his dream.

How’s the Story?

This story is just beautiful. My God, I didn’t know this movie was going to be so complex and well thought out. I mostly wanted to see it because I have a special place in my heart for Mexican culture since I spent a long time working for a Mexican family and they were so wonderful as to include me in their celebrations, an I wanted to see how Disney managed to tackle such a beautiful holiday as this one. In the end, I feel like they absolutely nailed the culture in the way this story is told. They even had the grandmother throwing her shoe at people, which I’ve witnessed firsthand since my former boss had three little girls, lol. This story just just so detailed and so well told.

How’s the (Voice) Acting?

I was actually surprised to learn who all were the voice actors in this one. I recognize several of these people, and yet I never placed the voices. I have to say, the boy that plays Miguel, Anthony Gonzales, did such a fantastic job with conveying the depth of emotions that Miguel goes through. It was just such a great job. And honestly, Benjamin Bratt was Ernesto de la Cruz?! I would’ve never guessed that listening! You know it’s a good performance if you can’t identify the actor in the role. This movie is just really well cast and well delivered with the voice acting.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

I could go on for days about how beautifully written this is movie is, and yet there are some things in it that are so amazing there are no words. I would say the most beautifully written part in this entire film is the progression from our perception of ‘some bum’ Héctor to Héctor the hero. The way he never really changes who he is and BECOMES a hero, but rather the shift is in the way we perceive him through the interactions he shares and the information that’s revealed to us, it’s just fantastic. It’s so cleverly written that I can’t think of much else that is comparable in character development to this.

The way that the reasoning behind calling the movie Coco after Miguel’s great grandmother unfolds from ‘why is it named after her if he’s the main character?’ to the entire audience being sobbing, blubbering messes is just masterful. It’s brilliant and I cannot give enough love to that entire thread of the story.

How’s the Cinematography Animation?

This is one of the most beautiful looking animated films I’ve ever seen. Full stop. The end. I could go into all the colors and the details and the skin textures and how they’re done so perfectly in this movie, but I think it’s succinct to say that this outdoes any movie I can think of that I’ve seen before in my whole life. It’s just absolutely breathtaking to look at.

Is It Worth Watching?

Coco is not only one of the best animated films I’ve seen this year, not only one of the best animated films I’ve seen in my lifetime, and not only one of the best films of this year; Coco is one of the most beautifully moving films I’ve ever seen. I love this movie. I love everything about this movie. The way that the story tackles family and the dichotomy of expectation versus love, the way it handles generational differences, and the way it handles tradition is just so carefully done and so absolutely beautiful. I cried so much watching this movie. There were about 4 times I was reduced to tears during this movie, and some of them were just from happiness.

It’s rare that a film comes along that is so transcendently beautiful in so many ways that I want to take everybody I know and show them this film, but Coco is one of those films. The only flaw in the entire movie is how predictable the biggest twist of them all is, and honestly? I don’t even really care that much about that. I was okay that I saw it coming. I was okay knowing what to expect. It was so enjoyable to watch the characters discover what I had figured out that I didn’t even care. I think if it weren’t for that very minor flaw, this would be my second 10/10 movie of the year. As it is, I wish I gave half-points, because it feels like a disservice to this movie to give it the rating I am giving it.

See this movie. I don’t care if it’s been out for several weeks now. I don’t care if you’ve already seen it. I don’t care if you didn’t think it would be your style. Just go see it or see it again. This is the type of film that touches people in a way that’s so special, and I love every bit of this movie. I’m sure you will/did, too.

My Rating: 9/10

About J. Chelsea Williford

Movie addict, reader, writer, pop culture lover.
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1 Response to Coco (2017)

  1. Pingback: Top 10 Movies of 2017 | Chelsea Loves Movies

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