'Coco' movie depicts spiritual worldview clashing with Christian teaching, conservative group warns

Disney Pixar's animated film "Coco" may have been a big hit during this year's Thanksgiving weekend, but a conservative organization is warning Christian parents against the "spiritual worldview" being shown in the movie.

(REUTERS / Alejandro Acosta)Women with faces painted to look like the popular Mexican figure called "Catrina" are seen in Zapopan October 30, 2014.

In a review by Focus on the Family's "Plugged In Online," Christian parents were advised to be careful before taking their children to the cinema to watch "Coco." The conservative group commended the film for its beauty and touching plot, but it maintained that the pagan view depicted in the animation clashes with Christian teachings, the Christian Broadcasting Network relayed.

"Coco" tells the story of the main character named Miguel who wants to become a musician despite his family's ban on music after his great, great grandfather left to go down that path. In his quest to prove his talent, the boy ends up in the Land of the Dead and is faced with the challenge of making it back to the land of the living.

Plugged In reviewer Adam R. Holz explained that Mexico's Dia de Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, played a major role in the plot of "Coco." He also noted that under the indigenous belief system, a dead person becomes dust once no one alive remembers him, and this is called "the final death." Holz added that the movie emphasized an Aztec belief which not only honored deceased family members but also worshipped them.

"The presentation of this belief system is no doubt touching and beautifully rendered. But the beliefs we see earnestly depicted here nevertheless remain at loggerheads with orthodox Christian teaching in long list of significant ways," said Holz. "So despite this film's eye-popping beauty and its heartwarming moments, Pixar's latest still packages a pagan worldview that's in sharp conflict with Christian beliefs."

People who celebrate Dia de Muertos believe that the souls of deceased children descend from heaven at midnight on Oct. 31 to meet with their families on Nov. 1. The souls of the deceased adults, on the other hand, are believed to visit their loved ones on Nov. 2, NBC News reported.

During the annual Dia de Muertos, people set up colorful altars and prepare the favorite food of their departed loved ones. In the cemetery, families also celebrate by holding picnics or even spending the night there.