Coco Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

Relationship with family, memory of ancestors and other meanings of the cartoon “Coco”.

Creators from the Pixar studio do not recognize patterns, their cartoons are unique and original. At first glance, the meaning of the film Coco is simple: follow your dream, be yourself, love your family and respect traditions. But in fact, everything is much deeper and more complicated.

Coco is a fairy tale for adults. The story is wise, sad and infinitely touching.

Country : USA, Mexico

Genre : Comedy, Adventure, Family, Music

Year of production : 2017

Directed by : Lee Unkrich, Adrian Molina

Actors : Anthony Gonzalez, Gael Garcia Bernal, Benjamin Bratt

Slogan : “The celebration of a lifetime”

Awards and nominations : In 2018, the cartoon received two Oscars

What is the cartoon about

A brief description of the content of the cartoon Coco. The plot revolves around Miguel, a 12-year-old boy from a Mexican village. More than anything, Miguel wants to be a musician. But not everything is so simple: his whole family consists of hereditary shoemakers who see music as the cause of all their misfortunes.

Mexican boy MiguelFrame from the cartoon.

Miguel has a talent for music, but his family is strongly opposed to him developing it. The fact is that many years ago, the music separated the great-great-grandmother of the protagonist from her husband. The family rose to their feet thanks to the shoe business, and music was a strict taboo. Thanks to this conflict, the main storyline of the cartoon Coco begins to develop, based on the culture of the people of Mexico.

An important role in the cartoon is played by the “Day of the Dead” – a holiday of the Hispanic peoples of America, dedicated to the memory of deceased ancestors. The tradition has its roots in the beliefs of the Mayans and the Aztecs. Over time, ancient customs bizarrely mixed with Christian traditions. According to beliefs and specific philosophy, on this day the souls of the dead can visit their homes and stay with living relatives, although they do not see them.

Miguel has an idol – the great Ernesto de la Cruz, who absurdly died at the peak of his popularity during his concert. Once the boy was persuaded to take part in a music competition dedicated to the “Day of the Dead”. There, by coincidence, the boy learned that Ernesto de la Cruz was his ancestor…

Miguel’s rebellious tendencies and a split in the family lead to the fact that the boy accidentally establishes a connection with the deceased ancestors and ends up in the Land of the Dead. There he is given the opportunity to learn the history of his family first hand.

The living cannot stay in the afterlife for a long time: otherwise they will remain there forever. Miguel has very little time left, and he really wants to find Ernesto de la Cruz. In this he is helped by the dog Dante and a strange guy named Hector. The new acquaintance claims that he is well acquainted with Ernesto, and in exchange for help he asks the boy to put his photo in the world of the living – this is how he wants to remind his loved ones of himself.

land of the deadFrame from the cartoon.

Héctor and Miguel go to the place where de la Cruz is holding his rehearsals. There they find out that getting to a celebrity is not easy: for this you need to win a music competition.

Miguel would have been willing to take the risk, but he doesn’t have a guitar – in a fit of anger, his grandmother broke it, who, by the way, hated music more than anyone else in the family. Saddened, the friends ended up in the ghetto – in a sad place where those who no one remembered lived. There, the shocked Miguel saw the death of one of the inhabitants of the Land of the Dead – irrevocable, because none of the living remembered him …

Soon Miguel managed to get a guitar and conquer the audience with his virtuoso playing and artistry. The winners of the talent contest helped the kid meet de la Cruz. Fascinated by his playing, the great musician promised to help him return home.

In general, they got along very well, but their idyll was broken by Hector, who had many questions for the “star”. It turned out that they once sang a duet, and Hector was the songwriter. One day, tired of wandering and missing his family, he decided to leave the duet. But de la Cruz, realizing that he himself would not be able to record at least something worthwhile, killed him …

A conflict flares up, and in the end the boy realizes that his ancestor is not de la Cruz, but Hector. After that, many more adventures awaited them, as a result of which Miguel managed to reconcile his great-great-grandmother with Hector.

After forgiving her husband, she decided to help Miguel return Hector’s photo to the world of the living. She told him that the only one who still remembers Hector is his daughter, Miguel’s great-grandmother, Coco. Although she is already beginning to forget him. De la Cruz tried to prevent Miguel from returning home, and as a result, the photo was lost …

Ending explanation

Returning to the world of the living, Miguel ran headlong home. Grabbing a guitar, the boy began to sing a song to Koko that her father once wrote for her. Great-grandmother began to sing along, and gradually remembered him.

In the finale, Hector and his family came unseen into the world of the living to see their relatives. And Koko was the only one who felt their presence…

The explanation for the ending is simple: Miguel’s extended family is reunited on both sides of existence. And the meaning of the ending of the cartoon Coco is that the connection between the two worlds is very thin. The dead always hear the living and keep in touch with them – of course, if they remember them.

cartoon meaning

The whole essence of the cartoon Coco is stated in the song. It is noteworthy that in the original the song is called “Remember me”, which literally means “Remember me”. But it is the domestic version – “Do not forget” – that fully reflects the main idea and meaning of the whole picture.

The authors of the cartoon fix the viewer’s attention on the topics of family and family ties, life goals and, of course, death. Death here is an integral part of life, from which there is no way to escape.

In short, the meaning of the cartoon Coco is as follows: honor the dead relatives, always remember them and keep them in your heart. Respect the living too: listen and listen to them.

respect for relativesFrame from the cartoon.

First of all, this cartoon tells about a girl who waited for her father for a long time, kept his letters, his photograph, and also the memory of him.

They were not destined to meet. The memory of the beloved father was defiled, his photographs were destroyed. The burning resentment for her husband in the heart of her mother, who never managed to love someone else, forced both herself and her daughter to deprive of music. The girl had one thing to remember. She kept her love for her father – thereby thanking him for everything.

And Coco is the story of a boy who desperately rushed between the call of his heart and respect for his family. He made his choice, and he will definitely walk his way to the end with his head held high.

The slightly surreal Day of the Dead fantasy has a deep meaning. Coco is a story about connections with ancestors. Original cults and creativity are intended here only to find an answer to the most important question: what is there where earthly life ends? What happens to those who left us forever? ..

Many analyzes suggest such an interpretation of the cartoon: the story of Miguel and his journey through the Land of the Dead is a metaphor for our eternal search for our roots. Every fragment of the past that we acquire is something that helps us realize who we are. It is for this reason that it is so important not only to remember oneself, but also to pass the memory along the chain from generation to generation.

The entourage invented by the creators of Coco, with all its hierarchy of the other world, is required only to emphasize the similarity of the feelings of the dead and the feelings of the living. Nothing goes anywhere – everything that you did in temporary life will remain with you forever.

old CocoOld Coco and Miguel. Frame from the cartoon.

The meaning of the name Coco

There is no hidden meaning in the name of the cartoon Coco. The central character – an old woman named Koko – had no secret. She was simply the only link between the two worlds. And it was thanks to her that the fragile connection between the living and the dead was restored.

Similar cartoons

Here are some cartoons similar to Coco:

  • The Book of Life (USA, Mexico, Canada, 2014). One day, on the eve of the Day of the Dead, the spirits of La Muerte and Xibalba come to a small Mexican town and take part in the lives of two local boys;
  • Soul (USA, 2020). Joe is a music teacher who dreams of playing in a jazz band. By an absurd accident, he dies and finds himself in a strange place – where souls are preparing for birth;
  • Howl’s Moving Castle (Japan, 2004). Young Sophie, by the will of an evil witch, is imprisoned in the body of an old woman;
  • Epic (USA, Ireland, 2013). Young Mary miraculously finds herself in a world inhabited by a small people.
  • “My Neighbor Totoro” (Japan, 1988). Two sisters, Satsuki and Mei, encounter a lonely spirit in the forest. They manage to befriend him.
  • “Up” (2009, USA). Carl and Ellie have always been together. But Ellie left him, and a nursing home was waiting for him, lonely and useless. And then Karl decided on a risky adventure.

Add a comment