Encanto [Grade: 95%]

Director: Jared Bush, Byron Howard, & Charise Castro Smith

Story By: Charise Castro Smith, Jared Bush, Byron Howard, Jason Hand, Nancy Kruse, & Lin-Manuel Miranda

Cast: Stephanie Beatriz, Maria Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo, Diane Guerrero, Jessica Darrow, & Ravi Cabot-Conyers, 

* * *

I remembered making a comment that I wasn’t as excited about this film for some odd reason. But it’s Disney, so of course I was going to see it anyway—we are all under a spell, I tell ya (LOL). I forgot that Raya and the Last Dragon was the last animation film in theaters for Disney after Luca because I said to myself (in comparison to Luca which possibly is the reason why I felt unmoved to see this film), “Now THIS is a story, and THIS is the Disney I like to see”  

* * *

Below are my grades for key components in #Encanto that I find to be key in any story/film/series—Theme, Plot, Pacing, and Character (pertaining to arc/development &/or delivery). FYI: My A=95, A- =90, B=85, B-=80…etc. My D- =60 and my F=50

Additionally, I have added an entertainment factor scale to help you determine whether or not the film is something you’d be interested in taking time out of your weekend, evening, or day to watch. The scale range consists of: Worth the Watch/$$$, Interesting Enough (if looking for something new to start, OR experience is intentionally relevant to the genre and executed well–nothing more), Wait for Streaming, Don’t Rush, & Don’t Watch.

I have also added a few non-spoiling thoughts, wonderings, and comments as I watched the film to help give some rationale for my grades and entertainment scale.

* * *

Theme: A

Plot & Story: A

Pacing: A

Character: A

* * *

Entertainment Factors

General Public: Worth the Watch/$$

Film Enthusiasts: Worth the Watch/$$

Experience Seekers (via Visuals & Score): Worth the Watch/$$

Disney Animation Fans: Worth the Watch/$$

* * *

TAKEAWAYS:

1. Isabela was SUCH a kee! 😂😂

2. The power of communication and inclusion to strengthen and mend a family. The messaging was clear from jump, and had amazing follow through not only via the characters (the response by Luisa when things started to turn, the response towards Mirabel in prepping and after the party, & Bruno’s story in general to name a few), but also visually with Casita. It’s the imagery and symbolism, for me. 👍🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾

3. Speaking of symbolism, Luisa’s song was such a good extension to the symbolism of the family. 👍🏾

4. When that door opened and she said, “I know…” 😂😂😂

5. Encanto tells a story of a girl different from the rest of her family who uncovers a secret that could negatively impact not only the essence of her entire family, but more importantly, her personal relationship with the family.

Act One introduces us to our protagonist and her family—coming out strong with the theme—showcasing why she is so different, and how that is met with each member of the family. 

Act Two brings about the conflict for this family and our protagonist, as well as her newfound motivation, continuing with the theme by indicating a need for strength and mending with the family.

Act Three is both the literal and figurative “family blow up” and journey to mend and strengthen. (It was very Tyler Perry, but make it Disney, and I loved it). 😂👍🏾👍🏾

6. Luisa was hilarious in Acts 2 and 3. 😂

7. BRUNO! 😩🙌🏾🙌🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾

8. Awwwww, Antonio was so adorable! 😩

9. I found myself really enjoying the “realness” of the characters / family dynamic—the relative who seems to be the perfect one / seems to have her shyt together, the nosey relative, the relative we just don’t discuss or bring around, the fun relative, the cousins who always stick together… and I can go on and on. It allowed me to become so invested in the story. 

Mirabel’s arc was also solid, with her experiencing this rollercoaster of emotions and purpose throughout each act due to different family interactions–and even a little from those in the town. 👍🏾👍🏾

10. Somewhere between Acts Two and Three I said to myself, “Damn…this film is packing a lot in an hour and 40-ish minutes, and it feels so seamless.” The film moves so well. There’s a fast pace to it, but not so fast that you lose track of what’s happening. 

It’s like when The Flash is moving at top speed, but everything else is is seemingly in slow motion allowing you to see every detail. 👍🏾👍🏾

* * *

Overall #Encanto gives the family dynamic of Up, Up and Away – meets That’s So Raven – meets the Sheldon and Walter dynamic in the Omnes Pro Uno episode of Jupiter’s Legacy – meets Act 3 of Beauty and the Beast – meets Sims 4

I just want to apologize for not having trust in this film (LOL). It’s definitely a fun film with a beautiful message. I will say, although I appreciated the complexion representation of this Latinx family, I did wish that this film would’ve used more of an African Diaspora family (like Children of Blood and Bones).

SN: I would love to see an Encanto 2 to understand the “why” for Mirabel.

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