Since I heard that there was going to be a animation movie about Dia De Los Muertos I was so excited. My girls and I painted up our faces like calaveras and we headed out to watch The Book of Life. I went in with my hopes high for this film. I think that when you have a single movie representing an entire cultural tradition pressure mounts. Imagine having just one movie to represent Christmas?
The movie was absolutely fantastic. First of all it is visually stunning. I mean check it out...
Every single scene and setting was packed with gorgeous details from the hearts on the fences to the skulls on the matador outfits.
The story itself did such a great job of incorporating the traditions of Dia De Los Muertos as the backdrop to a story with a very familiar love triangle storyline: 2 best friends in love with the same girl with good and evil forces meddling in the middle of it all. This really is a movie about love and friendship.
I thought the casting of this movie was brilliant. From Diego Luna, Zoe Saldana, Danny Trejo, Ice Cube, Placido Domingo and a handful of Mexican-American comedians like Cheech Marin, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes and even Gabriel Iglesias. I was a little concerned with Channing Tatum as one of the leads but he really did a great job as Joaquin.
As if the visual eye candy, touching story and outstanding cast wasn't enough, the music made me fall in love with this movie. There is plenty of music sprinkled throughout the movie and it is an eclectic blend of traditional Mexican music, current Chicano super stars like La Santa Cecilia, as well as many songs sung by Diego Luna himself. But what really did me in was how the blended current rock hits with mariachi music. Ever wondered what Mumford and Sons would sound like if they were a mariachi band? Well then go see this film. This musical mash-up gets me everytime. I feel like if I could capture my soul in a song a rock/mariachi song would be it.
I cannot say enough great things about this movie. I plan on seeing it again very soon.