The year 2017 was a mixed bag for animated films. On one hand, you've got absolute garbage like The Emoji Movie. On the other, you've got Coco, a delightful and colorful film from Pixar about the power of music, chasing your dreams, and the importance of family, especially members long lost to time.
The story follows a 12-year-old named Miguel (Anthony Gonzalez) who dreams of becoming a famous guitarist. Unfortunately, his family disapproves for mysterious reasons, but despite their best efforts, this boy has music in his veins—and when he walks into the tomb of his musical hero, Ernesto de la Cruz (Benjamin Bratt), and finds his idol's guitar, he can't help but give it a few strums.
Big mistake. This is El Dia de Muertos, after all, and after playing the guitar, Miguel finds himself lost in the Land of the Dead. Luckily, this is no Dantean hellscape (although there is a goofy little dog named Dante). Instead, it's a vibrant world of blues and oranges and friendly skeletons. However, if Miguel doesn't return to the real world soon, he'll stay in the underworld for good.
Admittedly, Coco doesn't compare with The Incredibles or Finding Nemo, but it's still a grand animated adventure and an absolute feast for the eyes…when you can see through your tears, anyway. This is a Pixar movie, after all, so there are going to be waterworks along with your laughs, and some pretty profound lessons about life and death.