Book of Life is the animated film that celebrated the Mexican Day of the dead. It is a fiesta for the eyes with a great visual style. Among other things, the film boasts the most spectacular scenery I have seen in quite a while. The colors are vibrant and lush, and the world is alive with character.
The plot follows a love triangle between Manolo, Joaquin and Maria, with Manolo and Joaquin vying for Maria’s heart. They inexplicably become part of a bet by the rulers of the World of the Dead.
The story is pure and simple. There won’t be any wild twists out there, but what is already known and expected really carries the movie far. It has a lot of fun along the way, and is celebratory of death. The land of the dead is where a lot of the fantastic visuals come from. It heavily contrasts with the more down to earth land of the living with colorful balloons, floating walkways and a whole new cast of wacky characters.
The songs in the film are wonderful as well. And, unlike musicals, they have a bearing on the plot.
The visual style of Book of Life really stands out. Everyone is modeled after wooden dolls, complete with joints and hinges. All of the side characters also have their unique look, some of them humorously odd. It gives the movie a great and colorful charm.
The movie is a great adventure through wonderfully imaginative places that tells the story of following one’s dream. Even the main bad guy is a likeable enough fellow, though there is a more antagonistic individual in the movie.
You won’t get many surprises or twists in Book of Life, but it’s all the more wonderful and warming for it. With great songs, visuals and characters, this is a fun movie for all to see.