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In the protected Colombian Encanto Valley, the girl Mirabelle and her wonderful family Madrigal live. Wonderful in the literal sense: the magic candle gives each of the Madrigalis amazing abilities. For example, Aunt Pepa controls the weather with her emotions, Sister Isabella commands the flowers, and Uncle Bruno sees the future. The clan's matriarch, Alma's grandmother, makes sure that the family uses their powers for the benefit of the inhabitants of the valley. But suddenly the candle malfunctions and deprives Mirabelle of magic. Is Madrigalei's magic gone?

Latino party


Genre: animated fairytale musical
Directors: Jared Bush and Byron Howard
Voices: Stephanie Beatriz, Maria Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo, Jessica Darrow, Diane Guerrero
Age rating: 6+
Premiere: November 25
Similar to "The Secret of Coco", "Moana"

Anniversary is the most traditional holiday. Numerous relatives gather at the table, take stock, honor each other's achievements, recall the hits of their youth. A formal, slightly boring ritual of love and respect. Something similar was expected from "Encanto" - the jubilee sixtieth full-length cartoon from Walt Disney Animation Studios. However, a new project by Jared Bush and Byron Howard (the creators of Zootopia) suddenly went against tradition and turned out to be one of the most unusual Disney cartoons in recent years.

And it's not just about the exotic setting. Although this is a lot: it seems, for the first time in the history of Hollywood animation, the action takes place in Colombia! Moreover, cultural specificity serves not only as a decoration, but permeates the entire film. The story of a miraculous village built by a family of refugees refers to the civil wars of the 19th century and the main national novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude. The screen is dazzling with vibrant colors and tropical animals of all stripes - Colombia is renowned for its biodiversity. Even some details like the mixed racial composition of the family and jokes about children who drink coffee are also spied on in reality (according to statistics, 50% of Colombians start drinking coffee by the age of ten).


To heighten the effect, some of the songs are performed in Spanish without translation (even in a dubbed version), and the cast is almost entirely represented by natives of Colombia or Americans of Colombian descent. In this "Encanto" is close to the analogous Latin tale "The Secret of Coco": both cartoons rely on the atmosphere and the colorful world, rather than on the famous names in the credits.

Perhaps the biggest star here is songwriter Lin-Manuel Miranda, acclaimed creator of Hamilton and the new king of Broadway. In 2021 alone, he released four movie musicals, and such productivity may be alarming: does the quality of the compositions suffer?

There are, perhaps, few guaranteed hits in "Encanto" (perhaps the story of Uncle Bruno), but Miranda's work is still impressive. He constantly juggles genres, often within the same song. Salsa organically flows into hip-hop, folklore Vallenato songs go side by side with Latin rock in the spirit of the 1990s. Miranda also returns to one of the best dramatic techniques of "Hamilton": all the characters have their own mini-leitmotifs, and in group numbers these melodies are intertwined, harmonizing or "fighting" with each other. Which again illustrates well the central theme of the family.