Encanto is more than just its pretty story and amazing musicals. Its lessons speak more to the generation today than anything else, and we get to see and understand Gen Z more through this particular movie.
It’s no secret that Disney can whip up likable and relatable characters in their animations. But, I believe none can take the cherry on top as the Madrigal family has. Each of their characters screams relatable, and it doesn’t go unnoticed how they seem to tackle the problems Gen Z is currently experiencing.
Today, we can see two kinds of Gen Z. Those who have full of hope and are very much alive and thrives in this chaos, and those who stand no chance against the onslaught they are facing. But both are plagued by the same problems Mirabel and her family have.
A Corner of Hope
An entire generation just managed to face chaos no other generation had, alongside the expectation that pressures them to be the ones that bring hope.
As the old adage goes, “Ang kabataan ang pag-asa.”
But one thing that is overlooked is that they, too, are looking for hope in every corner that can somehow uplift them in the destruction that ensued.
Everyone is looking for their small corner in this world. Everyone is trying so hard to compensate for what we have missed these past years. And we cannot avoid it if we think that we fall short of society’s standard.
The constant struggle to reach for something way out of our league in a world surrounded by perfection and achievements. We look for someone who can understand where we are now, may that be in books or movies.
And because of that, I’ve never been so happy to see an ordinary character come up to the big screens of a Disney Movie.
Mirabel the Giftless
Here comes Mirabel, a character who has no special ability whatsoever, and on top of that, she had to live with a family where everyone else had a gift except her. Was she a disappointment? No, why would she be? Was she a failure? No! She was trying her best to help her family despite having no gifts. But because she was lacking one major thing, disappointment and failure is part of the package she had to bear.
The same can be said to any Gen Z out there. The only thing that we didn’t have was a chance to show our full potential, a platform that we could’ve had. But it was taken and snatched. We had to start from scratch.
Mirabel can inspire anyone, giving everyone a chance at something that could be greater than what society depicts they should be. She is the complete embodiment of the Gen Z right now who are thinking that they are probably useless or incompetent when facing the real world, much less when facing our family filled with expectations.
And it’s not just her; we’re talking about every single character in the movie Encanto. Each of them is carefully created as a physical representation of each of our fears.
There is Luisa, with the pressure surrounding her, which can be associated with every student graduating with the burden of being something they are not.
Another is Isabela, who lives inside a gilded cage of perfection with no room for errors, always walking on thin ice.
And we mustn’t forget about Pepa. She has to reign in her emotions and keep a smile on her face despite having anxiety on top of worrying about a million things that could go wrong.
The exceptionally ordinary
Even if you think you are ordinary like what Mirabel had experienced, there will come a time when your ordinariness will be the thing that can save your relationship or solve your problems. You don’t have to have anything that screams special or amazing or perfect. Most of the time, it’s our passion and our love that pulls through every situation.
Stay true to yourself and what you believe. Don’t let your flaws be what pulls you down. Instead, let it be what brings you back up to pull you through. That is what Encanto taught us. And it will carry us to the next stage in our lives.
Despite everything that’s currently happening, I’d like to think that this generation is not lost.