Encanto is Extraordinary


Ayla Faullin, News Writer

Disney’s new movie Encanto has captured audiences for many reasons, including its stunning animation and catchy music. But that’s not all that Ecanto has to offer. It provides many powerful messages about toxic family relationships, feelings of worthlessness, and the danger of a stereotype.

The movie revolves around the main character Mirabel, a part of the magical Madrigal family. Each of her family members has a unique gift, from her cousin Dolores, who can hear anything, to her mother Julieta, whose cooking has healing power. Mirabel, however, has no gift and struggles to feel valuable in her gift-filled family. 

This in itself is a powerful message of self-worth and learning that talent does not define who you are. But that is not the only message that Encino dares to touch. Encanto was bold enough to call out toxic authority figure behaviors. 

Mirabel’s grandmother is not inherently cruel to her, but we see throughout the movie that she expects all her family to be perfect. Since Mirabel does not fit her version of a proper family, she tends to disregard everything Mirabel tries to do. No matter how hard Mirabel tries, her grandmother always finds flaws and never appreciates anything her family does. 

Another message that spoke volumes was from Luisa (Jessica Darrow), the main character’s older sister, and has a relatable message by many people. The song is titled Surface Pressure, and Luisa is singing about how she is the strong one, and she has to stay strong despite the pressure of her family. Perhaps all of us, to some degree, can relate to being weighed down by the expectations of our parents, of people, in general, expecting us to carry it all. The song’s words are compelling, with lyrics such as, “I’m pretty sure I’m worthless if I can’t be of service?” and “Who am I if I can’t carry it all?” These words relate to the struggle of toxic perfectionism and the lies that we are only worth something if we do well.

In the end, Mirabel and her family learn that their talents do not define them, that their love for each other and acceptance of imperfection allow the magic to be strengthened. In reality, not all families have this kind of happy ending, but it’s important to remember that you are not worthless no matter what. Encanto speaks well to remind us that humans aren’t meant to be perfect, and you are special just the way you are.