What do you do when you absolutely love music but it is forbidden in your family? In Disney-Pixar’s Coco, this is exactly the circumstance that Miguel finds himself in. He is a young boy who is an aspiring musician in a family of shoe makers. He loves it more than anything. He has a secret room where he practices guitar as he watches the films of the great Ernesto De La Cruz. From these films he not only learns music, but also to “seize your moment.” When he tries to do just that, he discovers it isn’t as easy as it is made out to be in the movies. In attempting to seize his moment, Miguel unwittingly finds himself in a completely different world on an adventure with departed members of his family. Through this adventure, both Miguel and his family learn about love, family, support, and music.
It really should come as no surprise but Coco is a beautiful movie. Watch the extras and it is quickly apparent that great pains were taken to make a movie that was both authentic to Mexican traditions but also capture the beauty of them. The result is a movie that is visually stunning and full of color and depth. There are so many moments in this film that are quite simply works of art. The audio profile for this film was equally beautiful and accompanied the visual storytelling wonderfully. It created an atmosphere where the story came to life as the sound immersed my entertainment room. Couple the excellent visual and audio effects with the gorgeous storytelling of the movie and it makes for an incredible viewing experience.
There are quite a few extra included with Disney-Pixar’s Coco. So many that on the blu-ray release they were included on a second disc. The extras included were as follows:
- Deleted Scenes with Introductions – Director Lee Unkrich and co-director Adrian Molina talk about the deleted scenes and the part they played in the development of “Coco.”
- Día de los Muertos – In this musical extravaganza, the colors and excitement of Día de los Muertos come to life as we meet superstar Ernesto de la Cruz.
- The Way of the Riveras – A musical number in which Abuelita and Miguel prepare their Día de los Muertos celebration while she teaches him Rivera family history and traditions.
- Celebrity Tour – Héctor, a Land of the Dead tour bus guide, agrees to help Miguel, revealed to be a living boy, on his quest to find de la Cruz.
- The Bus Escape – The Rivera family catches up to Miguel and Héctor and attempts to halt their mission to find de la Cruz.
- Alebrije Attack – Miguel and Héctor are interrupted on their journey to find de la Cruz by a fierce alebrije.
- The Family Fix – After de la Cruz reveals his true colors, the Rivera family puts their dismay aside and comes together to repair the smashed guitar needed to send Miguel home.
- To the Bridge – As the Land of the Dead counts down to the end of Día de los Muertos, Miguel and de la Cruz come head-to-head on the marigold bridge.
- Filmmaker Commentary – Presented by Lee Unkrich (director), Adrian Molina (co-director) and Darla K. Anderson (producer).
- The Music of “Coco” – Collaborating with musicians of Mexico and some unique instrumentation, this documentary explores the beautiful fusion of music essential to the story of “Coco.”
- Paths to Pixar: “Coco” – Explore how the film crew’s personal stories resonate with the themes of the movie itself.
- Welcome to the Fiesta – A musical exploration of the skeletons that make the Land of the Dead in “Coco” so wondrous and intriguing.
- How to Draw a Skeleton – Pixar artist Daniel Arriaga gives a lesson on the quick and easy way to draw skeletons using simple shapes.
- A Thousand Pictures a Day – Join the “Coco” crew on an immersive travelogue through Mexico, visiting families, artisans, cemeteries, and small villages during the Día de los Muertos holiday.
- Mi Familia – Developing the Riveras was a labor of love that took the cast and crew on a deep dive into the meaning of family.
- Land of Our Ancestors – Watch Pixar artists lovingly construct layer upon layer of architecture from many eras of Mexican history, bringing the Land of the Dead to life.
- Fashion Through the Ages – The cast of characters in “Coco” are from many different eras, making for some magnificent costuming opportunities.
- The Real Guitar – The majestic guitar that spurs Miguel on his journey through the Land of the Dead is a unique creation. Watch as it is initially designed by a Pixar artist and ultimately realized as a real instrument by a master luthier in this poetic ode to craftsmanship.
- Dante – How the crew fell in love with the uniquely Mexican breed of Xoloitzcuintli (or “Xolo”) dogs that inspired Dante.
- How to Make Papel Picado – Join Pixar artist Ana Ramírez González as we learn how papel picado is made traditionally, and then try your own approach to this beautiful art form.
- Un Poco “Coco” – A montage of original animated pieces used to promote “Coco.”
- “Coco Trailers” – Trailers include “Feeling,” “Dante’s Lunch,” “Destiny,” “Journey” and “Belong.”
Watching these extras really gave a sense to the love and dedication that the Pixar film crew had for creating an incredible film. The process behind the locations, traditions, characters, music, and so many other elements that brought this story to life were incredible to see through the lens of these bonus features. Watching them makes the viewer want to go back and re-watch the film just because of the added depth the extras bring when you know just how much work and heart was put into it. This was easily one of the more enjoyable set of extras to watch in recent memory.
Disney-Pixar’s Coco is one of the best films to be put out by Pixar. It is a beautiful story that is presented in an equally beautiful way. The characters are both interesting and endearing. The music is memorable. Coco tells a story in a way that the whole family will connect with. Couple a beautiful movie with a solid set of extras and this is definitely one to add to the collection. It easily gets a hat tip. Go out and get it and then share with me what you thought of it in the comments below!
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