About Your Privacy on this Site
Welcome! To bring you the best content on our sites and applications, Meredith partners with third party advertisers to serve digital ads, including personalized digital ads. Those advertisers use tracking technologies to collect information about your activity on our sites and applications and across the Internet and your other apps and devices.
You always have the choice to experience our sites without personalized advertising based on your web browsing activity by visiting the DAA’s Consumer Choice page, the NAI's website, and/or the EU online choices page, from each of your browsers or devices. To avoid personalized advertising based on your mobile app activity, you can install the DAA’s AppChoices app here. You can find much more information about your privacy choices in our privacy policy. Even if you choose not to have your activity tracked by third parties for advertising services, you will still see non-personalized ads on our sites and applications. By clicking continue below and using our sites or applications, you agree that we and our third party advertisers can:
  • transfer your data to the United States or other countries; and
  • process and share your data so that we and third parties may serve you with personalized ads, subject to your choices as described above and in our privacy policy.
Entertainment Weekly

Movies

Pixar’s Coco is a vibrant musical swirl of color and culture: EW review

Posted on

Coco

release date11/22/17
B+
Movie Details
type
Movie
Genre
Animated
release date11/22/17

Mamas don’t let their babies grow up to be mariachis. That’s one thing Miguel (voiced by newcomer Anthony Gonzalez) knows for sure: Ever since his great-great-grandfather abandoned the family decades ago to pursue la vida musical, every descendant has shunned both his tainted memory and any stray melody unwise enough to drift past a window. They are shoemakers now, not dreamers. But Miguel, a tenacious 12-year-old with a single dimple in his cheek and an unhushable song in his heart, can’t help it; his fingers ache for a guitar. And like every hero on a quest, he will find one. Though unlike most — especially in the shiny world of Pixar, whose Technicolor critters, toy cowboys, and anthropomorphized race cars often seemed to come in every shade but brown — he is also proudly, unmistakably Mexican.

Coco crosses another Rubicon most animated movies don’t: dealing frankly and even joyfully with death. In fact, the whole story line (co-written by several company veterans, including Adrian Molina, who also codirects) is centered on Día de los Muertos, the annual celebration honoring the sacred bridge between the living and the dead. Or in Miguel’s case, a literal one; in his single-minded pursuit of the instrument belonging to his hero, spangled troubadour Ernesto de la Cruz (a suave, tricky Benjamin Bratt), the boy slips over to the other side. Technically he’s still alive — but if he can’t win an ancestor’s approval and find his way back by sunrise, his day pass will become permanent. While the relatives he’s only known from old photographs aren’t strictly thrilled to see him, they’re still dazzling to look at: jangly-bright skeletons (in a concession to artistic license and kids’ nightmares, they do have eyeballs) who’ve carried on for years in their own busy, kaleidoscopic underworld. For friendlier allies he has the faithful Dante, an adorably dim street mutt with a tongue like a broken yo-yo, and an accidental chaperone named Hector (Gael García Bernal), a lonely muerto desperate to be remembered back home.

There’s an undeniable charm to all of this, and more than a few moments of pure Pixar inspiration (a droll battle of the bands, lovable ding-dong Dante). But the vividness of the narrative never quite matches the riotous swirl of color and culture on screen — and neither do the songs, sadly, for how central they are to the story. Instead, Coco settles into something gentler but still irrefutably sweet: a movie that plays safe with the status quo, even as it breaks with it. B+

type
Movie
mpaa
PG
release date
11/22/17
director
Cast
Anthony Gonzalez,
Complete Coverage
Outbrain

Tags