Reel Simple: ‘Book of Life’ entertaining fun

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Photo by Photo from official 'Book of Life' Facebook timeline

Manolo, the hero of the 2oth Century Fox movie ‘Book of Life’ playing now in regular and 3D at Kaʻahumanu 6.

By Alyssa Urayanza, feature writer

“The Book of Life” (directed by Jorge R. Gutierrez) can be described only as clever and entertaining. With its unexpected plot twists and witty puns, “The Book of Life” will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout the whole movie. I thought the plot was interesting and creative, but felt that it might be a bit confusing for younger viewers.

I loved how all the members of The Land of the Remembered each had a unique, intricate design to their faces. I also liked how the production company incorporated well-known songs into the film, such as Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and “Just A Friend” by Biz Markie.

Overall, I really enjoyed this movie from start to finish and was pleasantly surprised with the plot twists.

The opening scene starts with a museum guide (voiced by Christina Applegate) giving a special tour to a group of misfits. On the tour, she begins to tell them the tale of Manolo from the sacred Book of Life. I thought it was interesting that Gutierrez would start the movie with this scene, but the children play a part in the movie in that they add their own little comments throughout the telling of the story in a way that clarifies what’s going on.

The story begins in San Angel, Mexico. San Angel is believed to be the center of the world, and The Land of the Remembered and The Land of the Forgotten are located directly below the city.

Manolo (voiced by Diego Luna), Joaquin (voiced by Channing Tatum), and Maria (voiced by Zoe Saldana) are your typical three amigos. Manolo and Joaquin are both in love with Maria and constantly fight for her affection.

On November 2, the Day of the Dead, the keeper of The Land of the Remembered, La Muerte (voiced by Kate del Castillo), and Xibalba, the keeper of The Land of the Forgotten (voiced by Ron Perlman), make a wager. Xibalba bets that Maria will marry Joaquin while La Muerte is in favor of Manolo.

As the story progresses, Manolo must travel to The Land of the Remembered and complete a series of difficult tasks in order to bring back Maria.

The Book of Life is a great family film filled with laughs and life lessons. I give this film 4.5 stars out of 5 and recommend experiencing this riveting tale for yourselves.

Visit the official site and watch the movie trailer here.