Reviews - The Book of Life (2014)
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The Book of Life (2014)

Country: USA

Genres: Animation, Adventure, Comedy

Director: Jorge R. Gutierrez

Writers: Jorge R. Gutierrez, Douglas Langdale

Stars: Channing Tatum, Zoe Saldana, Danny Trejo, Ron Perlman, ...

From producer Guillermo del Toro and director Jorge Gutierrez comes an animated comedy with a unique visual style. THE BOOK OF LIFE is the journey of Manolo, a young man who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart. Before choosing which path to follow, he embarks on an incredible adventure that spans three fantastical worlds where he must face his greatest fears. Rich with a fresh take on pop music favorites, THE BOOK OF LIFE encourages us to celebrate the past while looking forward to the future.

91 | 2014-10-15 | Marc Snetiker

Overflowing with hyperactive charm and a spectacular sea of colors, it showcases some of the most breathtaking animation we've seen this decade.
Read More: Entertainment Weekly

88 | 2014-10-17 | Susan Wloszczyna

The Book of Life bedazzles your eyes and buoys your spirits as it treads upon themes most commonly associated with the macabre universe of Tim Burton.
Read More:

88 | 2014-10-15 | Roger Moore

A Mexican-accented kids’ cartoon so colorful and unconventionally dazzling it almost reinvents the art form. As pretty as a just-punctured pinata, endlessly inventive, warm and traditional, it serves up Mexican culture in a riot of Mexican colors and mariachi-flavored music.
Read More: McClatchy-Tribune News Service

88 | 2014-10-14 | Alonso Duralde

The Book of Life manages to be genuinely surprising and engrossing.
Read More: TheWrap

83 | 2014-10-16 | Drew McWeeny

The Book Of Life may play by the rules when it comes to story, but it plays its own game when it comes to how it looks, and in the world of animated family films, that's what really counts.
Read More: Hitfix

83 | 2014-10-16 | Steve Persall

With everything it's doing all over again, The Book of Life often finds fresh ways to do it. That's all it takes.
Read More: Tampa Bay Times

80 | 2014-10-21 | Trevor Johnston

It’s hugely entertaining.
Read More: Time Out London

80 | 2014-10-17 | Bilge Ebiri

It’s a potentially grisly setup, but the actual movie makes death look downright fun.
Read More: New York Magazine (Vulture)

80 | 2014-10-16 | Bill Goodykoontz

The film, directed and co-written by Jorge R. Gutierrez, is a visually stunning, funny movie that trusts children to deal with subject matter that many films don't: specifically, death.
Read More: Arizona Republic

80 | 2014-10-16 | Jordan Hoffman

For a kiddie flick, The Book of Life pushes boundaries, as the topic of death is undeniably front and center. But like Mexico’s Day of the Dead, the movie enjoyably, and successfully, mixes the macabre with the celebratory.
Read More: New York Daily News

75 | 2014-10-17 | James Berardinelli

The Book of Life represents Guillermo del Toro's most hands-on foray (to date) into the realm of family friendly entertainment; this is closer in tone and sensibility to one of Tim Burton's offbeat animated films than one of Pixar's more "vanilla" productions.
Read More: ReelViews

75 | 2014-10-16 | Laura Emerick

The Book of Life is a delight. In an animated universe cluttered with kung-fu pandas, ice princesses and video-game heroes, Gutierrez and del Toro have conjured up an original vision.
Read More: Chicago Sun-Times

75 | 2014-10-16 | Michael Ordoña

There are no great surprises, no shocking reveals (except to the characters themselves). But there’s so much to appreciate along the way that it’s a real page-turner.
Read More: San Francisco Chronicle

75 | 2014-10-16 | Michael O'Sullivan

The Book of Life may use state-of-the-art animation, but it derives its strength from the wisdom of antiquity. It only looks new, but it’s as old as life (and death) itself.
Read More: Washington Post

70 | 2014-10-16 | Tasha Robinson

It’s all flawed, and distracted, and conceptually messy, prioritizing color over common sense and energy over consistency. But as an afternoon’s diversion for a handful of misbehaving kids—both within the movie, and within the movie theater—it’s authentically winning.
Read More: The Dissolve

70 | 2014-10-14 | Frank Scheck

The Book of Life is a visually stunning effort that makes up for its formulaic storyline with an enchanting atmosphere that sweeps you into its fantastical world, or in this case, three worlds.
Read More: The Hollywood Reporter

70 | 2014-10-14 | Geoff Berkshire

The Book of Life is undoubtedly stuffed with more business than its fleet, kid-friendly running time can properly handle. Yet Gutierrez’s confident delivery of the material remains so buoyant and passionately felt throughout that he almost gets away with it.
Read More: Variety

67 | 2014-10-15 | Katie Rife

The characters move around in a thoroughly realized universe full of imaginative and beautifully rendered detail. Too bad the rest of it isn’t more interesting.
Read More: The A.V. Club

63 | 2014-10-16 | Claudia Puig

While the story is not as mythic or fanciful as it seeks to be, its predictability is trumped by the film's beauty.
Read More: USA Today

63 | 2014-10-16 | Calvin Wilson

A flawed but intriguing new chapter in animation.
Read More: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

60 | 2014-10-20 | Olly Richards

The gleefully Gothic fingerprints of Guillermo del Toro are all over this zippy excursion into Mexico's myths and legends, although the gag-count falls quite a lot short of Pixar greatness.
Read More: Empire

50 | 2014-10-16 | Manohla Dargis

This often beautiful and too-often moribund, if exhaustingly frenetic, feature tends to be less energetic than the dead people waltzing through it.
Read More: The New York Times

50 | 2014-10-15 | Marjorie Baumgarten

Visually arresting but dramatically rote, The Book of Life at least introduces American kids to the Mexican holiday of Día de los Muertos and should score points with families looking for kid-friendly movies that reflect aspects of their Mexican cultural heritage.
Read More: Austin Chronicle

50 | 2014-10-15 | Sara Stewart

Just in time for Mexico’s Day of the Dead holiday comes this gloriously colorful animated musical, which almost (but not quite) makes up in visuals what it lacks in snappy dialogue.
Read More: New York Post

50 | 2014-10-14 | Kenji Fujishima

Jorge R. Gutierrez subsumes the film's darker themes in a relentlessly busy farrago of predictable kids'-movie tropes and annoying attempts at hipness.
Read More: Slant Magazine

40 | 2014-10-16 | Charles Solomon

The Book of Life juxtaposes overwrought visual imagery with an undernourished, familiar story.
Read More: Los Angeles Times

30 | 2014-10-14 | Simon Abrams

The film's rote right-makes-might fantasy wouldn't be so obnoxious if pandering to the lowest common denominator wasn't its default mode.
Read More: Village Voice