A young boy who loves music is transported to the Land of the Dead,
where he seeks out his ancestor, a legendary musician, to get his blessing.
Directed by Lee Unkrich
Written by Adrian Molina and Matthew Aldrich
Starring Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Alanna Ubach, Renee Victor, Jaime Camill, Alfonso Arau
Oscar Wins - Best Animated Film, Best Original Song (Remember Me)
I'd heard for years that Coco was one of Pixar's best, but I didn't expect the film to be magnificent. An argument could be made that Coco is Pixar's masterpiece; a true triumph of animation and storytelling. I don't remember the last time I cried so hard because of a movie. This film's moving story of legacy, family, and the importance of never forgetting where you came from will stay with me forever. It's also Pixar's darkest movie, dealing directly with murder, betrayal, and abandonment. The film won two Oscars, but it should've been up for more. This film had a definite shot at a Best Picture win, especially in 2017.
Miguel (Gonzalez) is a young boy in love with music. But his family has had an ancestral ban on music for generations, ever since Miguel's great-great grandfather, a musician, walked out on his wife and daughter. Miguel finds out that his great-great grandfather was not just a musician; he was the most famous singer in Mexico: Ernesto de la Cruz (Bratt). Thanks to a twist of fate on Dia de los Muertos, Miguel is transported to the Land of the Dead, where he teams up with an undead bum named Hector (Bernal) to find Ernesto and get his blessing, so Miguel can return home and become a musician. But a major plot twist (unpredictable and stunning) will change Miguel's life, and the lives of his entire family, forever. The animation is stunning, the songs are heartbreaking, and the ending will bring even the most stonehearted man to tears.
It's been a long time since a film moved me like this. Coco is so important to Pixar's catalog in so many ways. The way it deals with death, the way it celebrates family, and the way it assures all of us that as long as we hold our loved ones in our hearts, they're never really gone. I'm enamored by the craftsmanship of this film, not just in the gorgeous animation but in the unique, heartfelt story and characters. What a triumph.