Once Upon a Time in San Angel
Manolo (Diego Luna), Joaquin (Channing Tatum) and Maria (Zoë Saldana) were best friends growing up in the Mexican town of San Angel. But there comes a time where their lives take different paths as Manola studies to be a bullfighter, Joaquin went in to the military and Maria headed to Europe to study. But whilst they all grow up one thing never changes and that is both Manola and Joaquin wanting to marry Maria. What none of them realise is that husband and wife deities have bet each other as to who will win Maria's hand.
The first time I attempted to watch "The Book of Life" I did so with no knowledge as to what the storyline was and to be honest I stopped after 2 minutes, found a simple synopsis to read and then started the movie again. Whilst it certainly helped to make the movie easier to watch it didn't actually do a lot to lift my impression of this animation which I question whether this was made for children or adults who will enjoy all the pop culture references such as when Manola sings "Creep".
Look when it comes to "The Book of Life" it is certainly a vibrantly coloured animation with some unique looking characters. It is full of smooth animation work and plenty of detail when it comes to the backdrops. And as I said there are a lot of references dropped in there which will certainly entertain grown ups although they might fly over the heads of younger audiences. The thing is that it all seems a little chaotic with so much going on in every single frame it becomes a sensory overload.
What this all boils down to is that I can kind of see why for some "The Book of Life" is more than just an okay movie as it plenty of humour and lots of detail. But for me there is too much going on and ends up one of those animations which if I had enjoyed it enough would watch again and pick up on something I missed the first time, but for me the busy-ness of it put me off.