Coco

At this point in this crazy WordPress/blog experiment, anyone still reading these reviews should quit. I would understand. I saw Coco, the new Pixar animated film, this weekend and I darn well nearly hated it. Everyone else loves it to the point that I’m clearly a dark-hearted misanthropic blackguard who should never watch movies or talk to other hu-mans about them.
 
Coco is set in Mexico around the Day of the Dead. Our main character is a child and an aspiring musician in a family of cobblers who hate all music. He secretly wants to play the Dia De Los Muertos concert but the family catches on and smashes his guitar so he steals one from the crypt of the most famous singer in the world… which something something…. and now he’s in the Land of the Dead and he has to find one of his ancestors to return him to the land of the living.
 
I really disliked the first half of the movie… the boy was a brat, his family irrational to the point I hated them both. Hard to care about these characters if they are so unlikable. The plot is predictable to the point I was hoping it would have a twist that I didn’t see coming. It did not. Then the movie kind of turns into a bad melodramatic soap opera at the end.
 
But the end, even with its alleged twists, did start to get better and I did start to feel something – anything – about the events on screen. The second half (or final third) does crawl its way to being an acceptable movie. Unfortunately, I could only work up so much emotion or empathy. Everyone else in the world appears to be crying like babies at the end and I’m 75% indifferent. But the 25% I could care, yeah, there’s something there that, if you bought the first half, you’ll love the whole flick.
 
And I DO suspect you will love this movie. So go see it.
 
The movie does look amazing. It’s Pixar… it’d only be news if it looked terrible! But, yeah, there’s a superb amount of detail throughout and the Land of the Dead is colorful and detailed in unique and interesting ways. No argument here – it’s gorgeous.
 
One other thing that put my crankypants on is that the Frozen short before the film was pretty terrible. I loved Frozen and thought their first short in front of an earlier movie was a lot of fun. But this one, which focused heavily on Olaf the Snowman, was tedious and unfunny. It’s focused on finding a new Christmas tradition for Anna and Elsa and, guy, wow… fruit cake jokes are just the funniest. Not at all a tired and hackneyed joke, those fruit cakes. The short is 21 minutes long and was apparently added, awkwardly, to Coco because Disney got nervous about the Mexican film playing well in the US. The short was originally meant to be a Christmas special on broadcast tv (hence 21 minutes with 9 for commercials).
 

So, yeah, I’ll defend how bad the Frozen short is but I give up on Coco being bad. Go see it. You’ll love it. Everybody says so and this could just be another Finding Nemo for me. I didn’t like Finding Nemo (sacrilege!) and thought Wall-E was just fine (*gasp*) so obviously there’s something wrong with me about certain Pixar flicks.

Score: 70

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