Movie Review – ‘Encanto’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

Last year, I saw the Disney/Pixar film called ‘Soul’, which was released via Disney+ on Christmas Day 2020. This year, I saw the film called ‘Encanto’, which was initially released for a short period of time at cinemas in November 2021 before it was soon re-released via Disney+ on Christmas Eve in 2021. 🙂

I must admit, speaking personally, I found ‘Soul’ a more enjoyable film compared to ‘Encanto’. Don’t get me wrong, ‘Encanto’ is passable enough for families to watch on Disney+. But I felt there were so many songs being performed throughout the film that often distracted from the focus of the story. 😦

The songs were provided by Lin-Manuel Miranda, who you may have seen in ‘Mary Poppins Returns’. And let me stress that the songs aren’t terrible. They seem catchy and I think they would work well in a more theatrical stage show environment instead of an animated Disney film situation.

There’s also a fantastical element to this film that was a challenge to get my head around involving a house that was somehow alive and the people who lived in it had superpowers. Not that I would mind that, but it took a while for me to identify with the many characters that lived inside the house.

The story focuses on a young Colombian girl called Mirabel who has to face the frustration of being the only family member who doesn’t have any magical powers when in the house. Mirabel seeks to save her family and the house when she finds that the ‘miracle’ appears to be diminishing quickly. 😐

There’s certainly an exotic and multi-national aspect to this film, which I greatly appreciate. I assume this film takes place somewhere in Colombia, South America. Honestly I found the multi-national aspects of ‘Luca’ more enjoyable than ‘Encanto’s. Perhaps revisiting the film could make a difference somehow.

I can’t say there’s anyone in the voice cast who are standout names for me like Stephanie Beatriz (though he did ‘The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part’) who voices Mirabel, as I’ve not come across her in films before. John Leguizamo is a name that’s familiar to me, since he voiced Sid the sloth in the ‘Ice Age’ films. It was nice to find him doing a voice here. 🙂

I felt sorry for Mirabel who seemed to be ignored by her family, apart from her loving mother and father, since she didn’t get any special powers when she had to touch a door as a little girl. Throughout the film, Mirabel seeks to save the family and their house with or without her powers. 🙂

John Leguizamo voices Bruno, Mirabel’s uncle who can see into the future and seems to have been banished early on in the film. There’s Abuela Alma, the matriarch of the family and Mirabel’s grandmother. I did get a sense Abuela Alma was too hard on Mirabel when she did not have powers.

There’s Juileta; Mirabel’s mother who can heal wounds with her cooking; and Agustín (voiced by Wilmer Valderrama who’s been in ‘Onward’), Mirabel’s father and Juileta’s husband (whose nose and right ear becomes big). There’s Isabela, Mirabel’s oldest sister who is considered ‘perfect’ and ‘a success’; and Luisa, Mirabel’s second oldest sister who is super strong.

There’s Félix and Pepa, who are Mirabel’s aunt and uncle (Pepa controls the weather); Dolores, Félix and Pepa’s daughter who has enhanced hearing; Camilo, Félix and Pepa’s son (who can shape-shift), and Antonio, Félix and Pepa’s youngest son who looks up to Mirabel and can speak to the animals. 🙂

Again, I would have liked it if I got to know more about these characters if the songs didn’t get in the way and distracted from the main plot. There’s also Mariano Guzman, Isabela’s suave and handsome fiancé; and there’s Pico, a clueless toucan (who happens to be voiced by Alan Tudyk in the movie 🙂 ).

Alan Tudyk voiced K-2SO in ‘Rogue One’, didn’t you know? Overall, ‘Encanto’ isn’t a film I would see again and again. I’m glad I saw it on Disney+ rather than at the cinema, and it makes for enjoyable entertainment for families watching films on Disney+. The songs sound catchy themselves as well. 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim 🙂

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