'The Book of Life' Trailer: Guillermo del Toro Presents an Animated Look at the Day of the Dead

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The first trailer for 'The Book of Life' has arrived and, truth be told, we have no idea what to make of it. On one hand, it has a high pedigree thanks to Guillermo del Toro's involvement as a producer and a completely unique setting and animation style. On the other hand, the trailer is cut to be as loud and shrill as humanly possible. In any case, it's refreshing to see at least one major 2014 animated movie that isn't a sequel or churned out by the typical major players.

Starring the voices of Diego Luna, Zoe Saldana and Channing Tatum, the film takes place on the Mexican Day of the Dead and boy oh boy, does it take advantage of that. This is one gorgeous looking movie, taking the colorful and crazy imagery of that holiday and using it to inform every frame and every character design. There is absolutely no realism here -- characters resemble wood carved puppets rather than flesh and blood people. It's a breath of fresh air for a medium that's become obsessed with replicating reality rather than embracing abstraction.

We wish the trailer showcased less obvious humor, but the sheer beauty of it all sure goes a long way. Here's the official synopsis:

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.

'The Book of Life' is scheduled to arrive in theaters on October 17, 2014, just in time for Halloween.

Fox Animation
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