The Disney-Pixar film “Coco” broke Mexico’s record last year, making it the top grossing film in its history.
The success was practically instantaneous. Since its release, social media has been filled with comments from excited people after watching the film, acclaimed for the beauty of its content and animations.
The American studios Disney Pixar, the world’s leading animated film producers, decided to bet on Mexican culture to bring it to the screen and everything indicates that it was a winning bet.
“Coco” won the Golden Globe for Best Animated Film and this Sunday March 4 is nominated for the Oscar in the same category.
This is an animated feature film in which the colorful and colorful traditional Mexican culture is seen through the eyes of a child, Miguel.
This little Mexican adventurer dreams of emulating his idol Ernesto de la Cruz, a kind of combination of famous rancher singers Pedro Infante and Jorge Negrete.
But in his family there is a veto on music that goes back generations, so Miguel finds no support to pursue this dream.
Love letter to Mexico
“The film is inspired by the day of the Dead celebration and is a love letter to Mexico. Pixar’s team traveled several times to the country to catch the colors, the festivities, but above all, the traditions that are framed in Mexican culture,” Lee Unkrich, the film’s director, told the media.
Critics confirm Unkrich’s words by pointing out that the creators of “Coco” did a thorough investigation, much deeper than the Hollywood vision of the day of the dead, in order to honor Mexico’s aesthetic and heritage.
In his eagerness to become his idol Ernesto de la Cruz, Miguel —in the company of his dog— accidentally ends up in the world of the dead on the very day of his celebration (the night of November 1).
His journey through the underworld is an excuse to appreciate the particular aesthetics of skulls and flowers in cemeteries.
Along the way he meets the charming Héctor (voiced by Mexican actor Gael García Bernal) and together they embark on an extraordinary journey that will reveal the real history of Miguel’s family.
The production of the film has not been without controversy. In the beginning, the tape is thought to headline “The Day of the Dead” and in 2015 Disney tried to patent that name within the U.S. with business objectives.
But Hispanic communities in the United States strongly opposed it, arguing that a cultural expression like that celebration could not become a “brand.”
“Somebody tell Disney not to register the mark ‘Day of the Dead’. Culture is not for sale,” wrote the present Collective on its Twitter account, which defines itself as an organization that wants to “expand the voice of latinos within the U.S.”.
Also the well-known cartoonist Lalo Alcaraz spoke about it and drew a huge skeletal Mickey Mouse and in a pose proper to Godzilla, accompanied by the message “Mickey dead. He comes to register the brand of your culture.”