I wasn’t paying attention and just might have missed it entirely. Actually, it was worse than that. I didn’t know what it was, and made an assumption that it was just another cartoon that made it to the big screen. It wasn’t until last night after playing cards, I was told to “go see it” by my card partner Kay. Really? I wanted to know why. I didn’t get a direct answer. Instead I was told that three grown men at her church saw it and cried. Okay if all three cried, maybe I should go and see it. Kay smiled and again told me to go see it. It is Coco. It has been in theaters since November of last year.
The main character, 12-year-old Miguel, wants to participate in a music competition on Día de Muertos –The Day of the Dead. (It is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout Mexico, in particular the Central and South regions, and by people of Mexican ancestry living in other places, especially the United States. It is acknowledged internationally in many other cultures. ) So in order to participate in a music competition on Día de Muertos, Miguel “borrows” the mid-century legend Ernesto de la Cruz’s guitar, his own having been smashed earlier in the day by his grandmother. But with the very first strum, Miguel is transported to the Land of the Dead. There, he meets departed members of his own family and ultimately, with the help of a trickster named Héctor de la Cruz himself.
Besides being humorous and beautifully animated, this film does an excellent job of presenting deceased relatives as well as the celebration of them in a very organic and natural way. Humor goes a long way to help people, even the skeptical ones among us believe that the dead are not only remembered but may still be among us in memory and spirit. Coco takes a serious subject matter and interweaves music, festivity