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  • Writer's pictureElisha Bae

Movie Review: Encanto (2021)

**This post contains spoilers for Encanto! If you haven't seen the movie (please do), perhaps you might want to come back to it afterwards.**


It seems like haven't done a movie review in a while! It's not that I didn't watch movies — more like... there wasn't a movie that caught my interest enough for me to write about it after I finished watching it.


But my God, Disney's newest movie Encanto was a masterpiece! I've already watched three times and I don't plan on stopping there. I'll delve into my impressions about different components of the movie!


Music

Since it's a Disney movie, I am compelled to start by talking about the music. With the Lin-Manuel Miranda composing the characters' songs, it was so easy to become invested in their stories and what they were going through. I can't really pick a favourite, but the song that gets stuck in my head days after watching the movie is We Don't Talk About Bruno. It's ironic because I end up talking about Bruno more than any other character because of this song. I don't mind one bit, though, because it's so great. The whole family's dynamic is presented impeccably in the song.


Overall, the music encapsulated the vibrant, bubbliness (is that a word?) of Columbia while exploring some wonderful genres of music for different characters. (Now... if only we could have a solo song for some of the other ones...)


Characters
Madrigal family, Encanto movie
(from left to right) Louisa, Isabela, Abuela Alma, Mirabel, Agustín, Julieta, Camilo, Antonio, Pepa, Félix, Dolores

Look at that. Just look. What a diverse bunch of people. They are la Familia Madrigal! They all have different gifts that they've received when they were young — the family helps out the town of Encanto with their powers.


I think I associated myself with Isabela and Mirabel the most. I get called elegant quite often but I sometimes get a little stressed over the fact that I'm not showing my all because I want to keep up a 'perfect' reputation. Mirabel does everything she can to help the family out and her ability to connect with different members of the family is something I see as my own strength. Even if these two don't seem to share many similarities with you, movies with dynamic characters are the best because almost everyone can see a part of themselves in at least one of the characters.


Cinematography

I think Disney is getting better and better at portraying cultural aspects and making the characters come alive. It's one thing to have well-developed characters but you need to have the right physicality to show that to the audience.


The colour scheme took the movie above and beyond, giving distinct personalities to the characters and also making it so much more lively! It was interesting to see that there was an aspect of magical realism when some of the characters were singing — the visuals took me by the hand and flamboyantly presented a whole new world several times.


Story

The story itself is also very important. With special powers and miracles, it's easy to forget that the people you love are the true gifts in life. While Abuela strayed from the path Mirabel was able to help her see what she was really trying to save when the candle presented the miracle. One thing that really gave me closure was the notion that we did not have to be perfect in order for someone to love us. In life, we try to be helpful and be strong for others just because we want to feel accepted and useful. But especially with family, love should come naturally without any conditions.


It's not my fault that I always start crying towards the end. The story just comes right at me!


Little Quirks

Okay, lightning round! I'm gonna list some little details and such that made the movie more epic than it already was:

  • Camilo's part in We Don't Talk About Bruno (I am all for dramatic exposition through songs)

  • Dolores' little squeak whenever she hears something/blurts out a secret (so. cute.)

  • Antonio's chill 'for the nerves' line while handing his stuffed animal to Bruno who was feeling a little stressed out (very suave, kiddo)

  • The details in Mirabel's dress! (I would kill for a dress that decorative)

  • Isabela's new look after she realises her true powers (you go, girl!)


I could probably write something for every 5 minutes of the movie but let's stop here so that I can go back and rewatch the movie. (Kidding! Or am I..?)


That's it for the review! If you've read through this even if you haven't seen the film, go and do that right now! Abre tus ojos and think about what's important.



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