Friday, January 17, 2014

Frozen in Theaters Now

(Review contains minor SPOILERS)

I had little interest in seeing Frozen (PG, 102 min.) until people started talking about the story and saying how good it was. From the previews, I thought it was some silly story about a snowman and a reindeer fighting over a carrot. The movie poster predominantly features this snowman as well. Seriously, who thought that was a good hook for this movie? Actually, Frozen puts a spin on Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale of The Snow Queen, telling the tale of two sisters growing apart because of the eldest's dangerous ability to turn the world to ice. When they are children, Elsa accidentally injures Anna, and because of this, their parents find a way to erase Anna's memories of Elsa's powers and make Elsa hide her ability. But when it comes time for Elsa to be queen, she is unable to hide the truth any longer, and it will be up to Anna to set the world right.

It's a very well-done Disney princess epic, if you like those kind of things, and I do. Though I'd like to see Disney try something new, I have to say this story is beautiful and fresh in many ways. The biggest way is that the plot doesn't all hinge on romantic love. In fact, the story plays with that a little in what is almost a parody of love at first sight. But when it comes right down to the important stuff, it's about the love of two sisters.

I was so pleased to see that the talking snowman is a rather minor character in the movie. Anymore of him would have been annoying. As it was, I didn't love him, but he does provide a few moments of silly fun, including a song that doesn't talk about what happens to snow in the summer. The scene of the carrot, shown in the previews, is not even in the movie.

Before I saw this, a friend of mine, Tim, was talking about one of the big song numbers from the movie, "Let It Go." Apparently, it's getting a lot of praise and even Oscar nods. It's definitely a beautiful, catchy song, but Tim is right, it's not quite the high point of the story. Elsa has found freedom of sorts, but it's a freedom that comes at the price of everyone else's. Her freedom hurts others. The song celebrates Disney's old, overused mantra: be yourself and be anything you want to be. Though the movie eventually comes around to showing the consequences of being yourself without regard to anyone, I'm not sure we are getting the right message. One is being belted out at the top of our lungs, and one is disguised as a feel-good ending. Which one is going to stick?

Overall, though, I was very pleased with the movie. The characters are lively and original, including the love interest. The music is memorable and worthy to be included among the epic tunes of Disney's greats. The animation is breathtaking and colorful, particularly the ice scenes. The story is not too rote. This is one I would be happy to own.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.