Are “Coco” and “The Book of Life” Comparable?

Damian Hernandez, Staff Writer

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“Coco” and “The Book of Life” are two movies related to the Day of the Dead (Oct. 31) which is celebrated in various Latin American countries and by many students at Venice High School. Both movies revolve around the theme of venerating the dead and music.

There are some clear similarities in both films, as they explore similar themes. The main protagonists in both “Coco” and “The Book of Life” are musicians with an interest in guitar. This is important to both stories as they solve the major conflict by playing a musical tune with a guitar. Another similarity is the constant focus on dead ancestors and their importance to the protagonists. A small, but noticeable detail shared by both films is that poison is used as the main tool to kill characters in the story.  Overall, both movies give an insight into Mexican culture through cartoon animation.

However, there are clear differences between both movies. For starters, “The Book of Life,” made by 20th Century Fox animation, had a $50 million budget while “Coco,” made by Pixar Animation Studios. had a budget of $200 million. This led to differences in the quality of animation and plot complexity. “Coco” dominated in every category, including box office position, music score, and visual effects. Although “The Book of Life” was released three years before “Coco,” the 2017 film adapted the ideas in “The Book of Life” and improved them.

It is almost unfair to compare both movies because one had a budget four times larger, so “Coco” will obviously be more popular. It should be noted that movies are a success because they provide an insight into a different culture through fun animation that appeals to everyone.