Disney’s “Encanto” has been life-changing, part of a spiritual journey for this Luisa look-alike

Credit: Mirabel Martinez/Disney

Disney’s Encanto made its theatrical debut on November 24, 2021, and debuted on the Disney+ streaming platform one month later on Christmas Eve. It has seen success after success, including a Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature, and the music from the film has been at the top of Billboard’s and Spotify’s charts and doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere anytime soon.

Encanto' reviews: What critics are saying about Disney's new film

Credit: Disney

Directed by Jared Bush and Byron Howard, Encanto features a cast of talented actors and singers, including Maria Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo, Angie Cepeda, Wilmer Valderrama, Carolina Gaitan, Mauro Castillo, Jessica Darrow, Diane Guerrero, Rhenzy Feliz, Ravi-Cabot Conyers, and Alan Tudyk.

RELATED: Here’s how Disney’s “Encanto” breaks all of Disney’s storytelling molds so far

Encanto is Walt Disney Animation‘s 60th animated feature and tells the story of the amazing Madrigal family who all live together in one magical house called casita. Their home is located in a hidden paradise deep within the Colombian mountains. Each member of the Madrigal family is blessed with magical powers of some kind–all except for Mirabel Madrigal, the protagonist in the story.

But there’s been a lot of talk about Mirabel Madrigal from Disney’s Encanto, so let’s talk now about a young woman named Mirabel Martinez whose resemblance to Luisa Madrigal from Encanto is UNCANNY. Just take a look!

A close-up selfie of Maribel

Credit: Mirabel Martinez

Encanto‘s Luisa Madrigal is the middle sister between Isabela and Mirabel Madrigal. She was blessed by the family’s miracle with super strength, and because of that superhuman physical strength, her family seems to assume she can also bear the weight of every family trial and stressor. She feels she has to live up to that expectation and stay quiet about her personal struggles with feeling less than valuable or unworthy as a person if she can’t handle it all, and all by herself.

Luisa Madrigal encanto

Credit: Disney

The scenario gives way to Luisa’s breakout ballad called “Surface Pressure”–three minutes and 22 seconds of her honest feelings.

Remember the part of the song in which Luisa moves boulders with her hips while singing the lyrics, “I don’t ask how hard the work is/got a rough, indestructible surface?” Yeah, Martinez pulls that one off flawlessly. Well, minus the boulders.

Martinez can also cry just like Luisa Madrigal.

Here’s that scene from the film:

Miss Martinez says that though she looks very much like Luisa Madrigal, she shares far more with the character of Luisa.

“Growing up as a middle child, I felt so much pressure to take care of my siblings and handle adult responsibilities,” Martinez said. “I never really had the opportunity to be just a child. I was my mom’s emotional support and a role model to my younger siblings. I felt like I had no choice but to take on so much weight.”

Martinez has used TikTok to share these (and other) videos of herself lip-synching to “Surface Pressure” from Encanto and acting out other scenes from Encanto that feature Luisa. Her videos have been viewed more than 28 million times, largely due to Martinez’s striking resemblance to Luisa Madrigal. But for Martinez, the connection she feels with Luisa runs much deeper.

In 2022, Disney's 'Encanto' is teaching me to stop defining myself by my accomplishments | KCUR 89.3 - NPR in Kansas City. Local news, entertainment and podcasts.

Credit: Disney

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“I was surprised to see a masculine-yet-feminine presented female [character in the film], Martinez said. “I’ve always been told I look too ‘masculine’ to be feminine, but seeing Luisa just made me feel comfortable with loving myself even more.”

Because Encanto centers around a theme that affects many families–that of intergenerational trauma–lots of fans of Encanto say they feel a strong connection with the message from the film. Mirabel Martinez is one of them.

RELATED: “Encanto” was a first for Disney Animation, and you might be surprised to learn why

“As a child, I endured a lot of abuse and trauma,” she explained. “With that being said, I also adopted my siblings once I got old enough. It did provide healing.”

Aside from looking like Luisa and learning from her character that it’s ok to be fully herself, Miss Martinez also has an amazing singing voice, which she showcases in this video as she sings a piano cover of “Surface Pressure” from Encanto.

Have you ever felt a connection with a Disney character or with a storyline from a Disney film? Tell us your story in the comments!

About Becky Burkett

Becky's from the Lone Star State and has been writing since she was 10 and encountered her first Disney Park when she was 11. It was love at first Main Street Electrical Parade. Joy is blank lined journals, 0.7 mm pens, and all things Walt, Woody and Buzz, PIXAR, Imagineering, Sleeping Beauty (make it blue!), Disney Parks history and EPCOT. At Disney World, you'll find her croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. If you can dream, you really can do it!