Aside from knowing all the characters in Sing and Trolls and playing Moana’s song in my head over and over again (read: LSS) getting excited when there’s another cartoon movie released is what I acquired from my children. Just recently, we watched Coco (my little man loves skeleton and monsters) , a film about Miguel, a boy who dreams to become a musician but was mysteriously brought to the land of the dead. I thought the story would revolve about his family not being supportive of his dreams but the movie was much more than that. Coco is not as grand as the other Disney or Pixar movies but it touched my heart and made me think about life after afterlife.
Before I play the song Remember Me (hindi kay Renz Verano ha) I wrote down 10 things that I will remember from the movie Coco.
1. It was surprising that the title does not refer to the lead protagonist. The boy’s name is Miguel and Coco is actually her great grandmother. I think it’s the first time that Disney did this. Nice.
2. Miguel’s dream is to become a musician but his whole family does not support it as they want him to learn how to make shoes which is their family’s business. This scenario happens in real life, too. The daughter’s dream is to be a teacher but her parents decided that she will take up nursing in College. As parents, we only want the best for our children but, it is also important to hear our kids and appreciate where they excel at, and provide guidance. Family’s support is everything when it comes to reaching your dreams.
3. In some scenes, Miguel was called muchacho. All this time, I thought that muchacho/muchacha means “slave”. Blame it on old Pinoy films and teleserye. Now I know that that muchacho and muchacha mean young man/woman in Spanish.
4. When I was a kid, I was ashamed to tell my classmates and friends that my birthday is on November 2 as it is All Soul’s Day in the Philippines. I learned from the movie that remembering our loved ones who were called on to a better place on a special day does not only happen in my country but in Mexico as well. They call it Dia de Los Muertos.
5. Coco’s father, Hector, was a musician. He played the guitar and composed songs. My father used to play the guitar when he was still alive. I promised I would buy his own but he died before I could make it happen.
6. I remember my dad embracing me while we danced to what he’s singing. The scene wherein Hector sang to young Coco brought back this memory (and it made me cry!)
7. Ernesto dela Cruz, the antagonist , was famous and successful. Thousands of people idolized him but he did not have a family. I thought, “so what are you going to do with success if you do not have anybody to share it with?” It’s all for nothing when there’s no family you can go home to.
8. In the movie, the dead will never be able to cross afterlife if no one puts up a picture of him/her and if that happens after Dia de Los Muertos, the dead will be gone forever since nobody remembered him/her. That made me sad and think, “What if I die and my grandchildren could not remember me anymore? Will my kids pass on stories to their children about Lola Meg? I don’t want to be forgotten. That’s the real death for me.
9. In relation to #8, I believe that we should leave good memories and be kind to the people around us. You would not want your family and friends to talk about how much they appreciate you when you’re already gone. When you could not hear it anymore. Have you read Tuesdays with Morrie? Morrie, knowing that he will die soon, contacted the people close to him for a “live eulogy” because he wanted to hear what they are going to say about him. I am not saying that you should arrange a eulogy in advance! Haha! But you know I make sense, right? *wink*
10. The mind can forget but the heart will always remember. I cried buckets when Coco finally met her father afterlife (sorry for being a spoiler!) After leaving his family behind due to untimely death, Hector still longed for her daughter and that’s the only reason he would like to cross the bridge. Coco on the other hand, missed her Papa, too, even when she’s suffering from Alzeihmer’s disease (though it was not mentioned in the movie) When it was her time to go, Hector welcomed her and their (skeleton) family was complete again.
I am always a crybaby when it comes to stories about family because I miss my father badly. I imagine myself being greeted by my dad in the gates of heaven with his guitar and my favorite food cooked by him when it’s my time to leave earth. Thank you, Coco, for reminding me what that life is about love, family, happiness, and making our dreams come true.