Disney used numerous real-life influences while crafting the story of Encanto, and here’s how accurate a representation of Colombian everyday life it is. Disney Animation has plunged into the depths of Atlantis and the excellence of Arendelle, yet there are still countless fictitious and real-life locations Disney energized movies presently can’t seem to investigate. One paradise on Earth that is only now having its opportunity to be highlighted in a 3D-enlivened blockbuster is Colombia, seen through the eyes of Mirabel Madrigal (Stephanie Beatriz) and her otherworldly family in the town of Encanto.
Encapsulating all of Colombia’s way of life within one film is close to impossible, as Colombia is comprised of countless various regions, each with its own one of a kind history and traditions. In spite of the fact that Encanto couldn’t possibly include all of the country’s diversity in its 109-minute runtime, each component portrayed onscreen shows off an incredible level of authenticity. From the traditional designs of the town’s engineering to the brilliant weaving of the Madrigals’ dresses, and from the comfortable cover like coats (called “ruanas”) to their adoration for coffee and arepas, Encanto feels like a story that really takes place in a provincial Colombian town, which is Encanto’s greatest accomplishment regarding social representation. Above all, Encanto captures the Colombian concept of family, which relies on shared support and an incessant work to ensure that every relative achieves their latent capacity.
Encanto’s impressive soundtrack by Lin-Manuel Miranda also contributes to the authentic feel as it includes original songs from Colombian stars Carlos Vives and Maluma. Where Encanto does stumble is in the absence of vallenato, merengue, salsa, and cumbia — all musical genres that are listened to every day the whole way across the country. Assuming iconic songs like “Colombia Tierra Querida” (which was included in Encanto’s first teaser) are constantly heard in the busiest streets of the country’s metropolitan areas, it’s really odd that a family like the Madrigals doesn’t sing or listen to more traditional rhythms.
All things considered, Encanto is extremely devoted to Colombian culture and day to day life. With so many compelling characters thus a significant part of the nation still left to investigate, the possibility of future Disney sequels and spinoffs is an exciting one, to say the least. As Encanto’s ending possibly sets up, an inevitable continuation of the Madrigals’ story could investigate any of Colombia’s traditional carnivals, its countless myths and legends, the contrasting landscapes, and surprisingly the majestic traditions associated with Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Really, the possibilities are endless.