Thank you Disney/Pixar for inviting me to a movie screening so I can provide this review.
Disney/Pixar has done it again. They have the uncanny ability to make grown people cry their eyes out during their films. (Inside Out for example)
I showed up to the movie screening trying to play it tough. I brought no tissues. Pixar won’t get me this time. I made it through the majority of the film without crying and then I felt the tears coming.
Maybe no one will notice I thought.
The kind lady next to me handed me a tissue from her purse and said, “I think you need this.”
Busted! She was right. My mascara was smeared all over my face. At that point I did not care because the movie was heartfelt and entertaining. Plus, who doesn’t enjoy a good cry once in a while?
Without giving away any spoilers, here’s what I can tell you about COCO and why you should consider seeing it this Thanksgiving break.
A Spoiler Free COCO Movie Review
What is COCO about?
This film follows Miguel, a 12 year old boy who has dreams of being an accomplished musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz (voice of Benjamin Bratt). But, there’s one major hurdle he has to overcome – his family has a generations-old ban on music. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colorful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events on Dia de los Muertos. Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector (voice of Gael García Bernal), and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.
Is COCO scary for young children?
At first glance parents may be weary of taking their children to see a movie about death that shows characters with skeleton faces. With stunning bright images and likable characters, viewers can look past the fact that half of the characters are ‘living’ in the Land of the Dead. That being said, use judgement with your own child. If they are terrified of the skeleton faces perhaps skip this film, but I promise the skeleton faces are not displayed in an evil or scary manner on the big screen. I have seen preschoolers more terrified of the shark off of Finding Nemo than what this film shows.
What parents need to be aware of is how sensitive their children are to death and saying goodbye to loved ones that are no longer with us. Without spoiling the movie, there is a theme of loss. However, the way the theme is shown is in a beautiful and respectful manner. COCO can help teach children that those that have passed on are not completely lost. That they are living on in our hearts and should be celebrated and remembered always.
I recommend watching the film first if you have a child that you think might be negatively effected by the topic of death and decide for yourself if it’s a good fit.
There are references to drinking and partying that adults may want to shield from their children’s eyes. Like most Pixar movies, adult themes sometimes go over kids’ heads.
Is COCO a musical?
We see Miguel’s journey to become a successful musician through some song and dance. Catchy tunes such as “Remember Me” keep audiences engaged. That being said, don’t expect COCO, a film about music, to have a lot of songs that you will remember and sing along to.
How can a film about death be enjoyable for anyone?
Again, the topic of death can be scary and one that many people don’t want to talk about. Pixar is able to tackle the topic of death in a non scary manner. Their ability to portray what life is like beyond Earth through stunning imagery was a feast to my eyes. COCO makes the concept of death less scary. One can appreciate the way the after-life is portrayed in COCO, regardless of religious or cultural beliefs.
What bonus features can COCO moviegoers expect?
COCO is the gift that keeps on giving. Movie goers can now watch Olaf’s Frozen Adventure, a 21 minute featurette that welcomes our favorite Frozen characters back to the big screen!
Olaf teams up with Sven on a merry mission! It’s the first holiday season since the gates reopened and Anna and Elsa host a celebration for all of Arendelle. When the townspeople unexpectedly leave early to enjoy their individual holiday customs, the sisters realize they have no family traditions of their own. So, Olaf sets out to comb the kingdom to bring home the best traditions and save this first Christmas for his friends.
Watch Olaf’s Frozen Adventure Clip
More COCO fun ahead
Watch the COCO movie trailer
COCO Activity Pages
Download the official COCO poster
Get social with COCO
I hope my COCO movie review answered any questions you may have had. Seize the moment and watch COCO on the big screen now! Don’t forget your tissues!