Coco (2017)

Remember me…



IMDB : 8.8

Rotten Tomatoes : 97%


Plot & Review

Coco is a 3D animated movie produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures on November 2017. The movie took a concept from Mexican holiday Day of the Dead. It follows a story of 12 years old aspiring musician, Miguel who stucks on the land of the dead and must seek the help from his family to return to the land of the living.

Miguel’s great grandmother Imelda married a musician, but her husband left her with their daughter Coco to pursue a career in music and never came back. She banned music from her family and learnt to become a shoemaker which later became the family’s business. In the present, the 12 years old Miguel now living with her family and an elderly Coco. Miguel has a great interest in music and dreaming to become a great musician like Ernesto de la Cruz.

When his grandmother Elena broke his guitar because she knew he wanted to enter a talent show, he concludes that Ernesto is his great grandfather from the photo from his house’s ofrenda. He decides to “borrow” Ernesto’s guitar from his tomb, but instead he is cursed and transported to the land of the dead. To return to the land of the living, he must seek the blessing from his family before sunrise or he will become one of the dead. But when Imelda’s blessing requires him to abandon music, he run away from his family and seek for blessing from Ernesto instead.

While looking for Ernesto, Miguel meets the almost forgotten skeleton named Hector. They make a deal: Miguel will take back Hector’s photo to the land of the living and Hector will help Miguel to find Ernesto. Later, Hector finds out that he died because Ernesto had poisoned him when he tried to get back to his family and Miguel realizes that Hector is actually his great grandfather whose guitar and songs he had written were stolen by Ernesto. Together, with the help from the rest of his family, Miguel reveals to the world that Ernesto was a fraud which resulting Hector reconnects with Imelda again.

As the time close to sunrise, Hector’s in danger from being forgotten and disappearing. Miguel earns his blessing from Imelda without any condition and returns to the land of the living. He sings Hector’s song written for Coco and triggered her memory of Hector and thus saving Hector from disappearing, because Coco is the last living person who still remembers him. The family accepts music back into the family and Miguel reconciles with his grandmother Elena.

In my opinion, Coco was one of the best animated movie this year. It was a touching story about the importance of family wrapped in an interesting Mexican holiday theme. This movie taught us that no matter what happens, a family won’t turn its back to you and it should be the thing you treasure the most before anything.

I like how the movie was a very enjoyable journey, with a light plot twist which rather uncommon in an animated film. As the main theme is a Mexican holiday, the movie successfully deliver the unique Day of the Dead atmosphere with its particular tradition and vibrant color. It’s also packed with some ear-catching songs in both Spanish and English. But I like the full Spanish version better than the mix version.

Honestly, I couldn’t point out anything I don’t like about this movie. I love every part of it, the characters, the music, the plot, just everything. So I would recommend this movie to all of you, and if you can, watch this movie with your loved ones.

Despicable Me 3 (2017)

“I have a twin brother!” – Gru


I’ve been following this animation movie franchise since the beginning, including its spinoff, so despite the bad review and ratings, it’s still become one of my must watch list this month.

Honestly this movie was below my expectation. The idea and storyline were so-so. I mean, Gru suddenly has twin brother? That’s really came from nowhere. In my opinion, compared to the previous movies, the quality of the story is going down as the sequel increases. Given the quite open ending, I think there will be a 4th movie in a few years.

As the movie is supposed to be family comedy, in my opinion it’s not as funny as the previous movies which could make the whole theater laughing out loud. This movie is funny but it’s not that funny that you want to roll on the floor and laughing so hard. The funniest part of the movie and might be the best part is still nailed by the minions army. So for entertainment only, this movie is still served its purpose. If you are looking for some animation comedy but with deeper and impactful storyline, this one is not recommended.


A Silent Voice (2016)

When life hits you hard, will you fight for it?


Title: 聲の形 / A Silent Voice

Genre: Animation, Drama, Friendship

Production Company: Kyoto Animation

Running Time: 129 minutes

Koe no Katachi or in english titled A Silent Voice, is a 2016 japanese anime movie produced by Kyoto Animation, the same studio which produced popular anime such as The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, Clannad, K-On!!, Hyouka, etc. The movie is based on a manga with the same title written and illustrated by Yoshitoki Ōima.

It tells a story about Ishida Shoya who bullied a deaf girl named Nishimiya Shoko alongside his classmates back then in elementary school. The bullying continues to the point that Nishimiya has to transfer school. His classmates and the teacher blamed Ishida for what happened to Nishimiya, made him a scapegoat despite his classmates role in bullying her.

This results in Ishida being bullied and shunned by his classmates until he decides to isolate himself up until high school. He thinks that there is no point of having friends again and even considering suicide by jumping off the bridge. But then he decides to continue living after he reconciles with Nishimiya and sets to a path of redemption by trying to reconnect Nishimiya and their old classmates.

While Ishida tried to make Nishimiya befriend the others again, they realizes that they still haven’t changed from back then and so they along with the others from elementary school have a break down. They still blame each other for being ignorant of Nishimiya’s bullying, resulting in Nishimiya’s attempt to suicide by jumping off from her apartment because she blames herself for causing Ishida lost all of his friends.

At the last minute, Ishida managed to save her at the cost of his life. He is the one who fell from the veranda instead of Nishimiya. When Ishida is not conscious yet, Ueno stands by him all the time and forbids Nishimiya from visiting him. But his accident becomes a turning point for Nishimiya and his friends. When Ishida wakes up, he realizes that all of his friends are there waiting for him and he’s not alone. Together with Nishimiya and the others, he fight his biggest fears and enjoy the school festival. He decides to not ignore his surroundings anymore and moves on.

Koe no Katachi was one of the most anticipated movie in my must watch list. The movie aired in Japan around September 2016, not too long ago after Kimi No Na Wa which is aired on August 2016. So I expected the same thing happened. But even after Kimi No Na Wa finished airing in my country, it took few months later until this movie is coming out on the theater. I already finished reading the manga when I watched the movie. I can say the production house did a good job adapting the manga into a whole movie. Even people who haven’t read the manga can enjoy the movie in almost the same excitement with the people who did.

It was a journey full of mixed feelings for 2 hours. It showed us how bad bullying can affect someone’s life, even for someone who acted as the bully. It also told us that life is not all good all the way. Sometimes we are above the others, but the next seconds the situation could turn around drastically. That’s life for us.

Through Nishimiya character, we were taught that how bad our condition is, we should learn to love ourself. By doing that, not only we will live happier, people around us would also feel happy. Suicide was not a solution, it could only bring despair to people who love us. While through Ishida character, we were taught that running away is not an option. We shouldn’t be ignorant to our surroundings and never give up. There is always people like Nagatsuka who is willing to accept us as who we are. If we just open up a little and let the others come in.

There are different supporting characters with different personalities. In my opinion, those personalities are the examples of people in real life. We can’t judge the others as only good or bad. For example, Ueno. I think we are all agree that she’s a b*tch by the way she acted towards Nishimiya. But I can’t bring myself to really hate her, because I found a little bit of truth in her words. I think people are like that, not all good and not all bad.

Honestly I can’t love this movie as much as I love Kimi No Na Wa. Maybe because in Kimi No Na Wa case, I have nothing to compare except for Shinkai’s previous works. But in Koe no Katachi, which previously known as manga, people (including me) unconsciously will compare the movie with the manga. In my opinion, the transition between scenes were to fast. So it didn’t leave a deep emotional impact even on the saddest scenes. Maybe they tried so hard to fit those 60+ chapters of manga into a 2 hours long movie. I know it’s hard. In my opinion, for a story like this, the manga has already quite compact and I can say almost all of the scenes are important. So if you want to know the story in more detail I suggest you to read the manga.

So if we want to compare objectively as a standalone movie, I can say both Koe no Katachi and Kimi No Na Wa were masterpieces. Both of them had a strong emotional impact for the viewers and has such beautiful story. But if you seek more life lessons, then Koe no Katachi is better.