Back in August 2013, I did a post mainly centered on Frozen and its lack of style when compared to the 2-D drawn movies. Frozen hit theaters on Thanksgiving 2013 to a lot of praise. But is that praise deserving or are people just blinded by the snow?
The answer, is yes, it is deserving of praise. Frozen despite its first trailer, which was bad, is a very an entertaining and engaging movie.
Let’s just get the style and the look of the movie out of the way. Yes, it looks like Tangled, hell Rapunzel and Flynn had cameos and Anna and Elsa look like Rapunzel. While it is annoying that the 3-D Disney movies have little variation in the female looks and not the men, I can justify this. Perhaps their royal families married and they are cousins or something, I would buy that. But please Disney try some new female looks the same face with freckles are getting old. Maybe go different place in this 3-D world, like Spain that would be fun.
The characters, are all great especially Elsa. Elsa is no doubt the most complex character Disney has come with. I read that she started at the antagonist but the song Let it go forced them to rework her character and gave us the sister angle. She is so complex that she great to watch. The other characters are all good. I was surprised by Olaf. After that trailer I wanted to hate him but the voice actor, Josh Gad, made him work in a charming way. I adored Sven. Anna is a bit annoying at time but she didn’t bother me.
Anna, Olaf and Kristoff
If you read my other Frozen post you would get the impression that I’m down on 3-D Disney movies in favor of 2-D animation ones. That is a little true, Tangled was not enhanced by being in 3-D it could have been in 2-D easy by not Frozen. The snow and the ice looked beautiful in the 3-D rendering and that was the point. There should be some reason for the medium. It seemed like Tangled was the experiment and Frozen was the pay-off.
Elsa and Anna
I like how Disney is playing with their own tropes, Elsa telling Anna she can’t marry some she just met, Hans being the bad guy (he’s a bit like Gaston in that way) and true love being between sisters. It’s really refreshing and playful. Fun question, because Hans is the villain, does that make the romance song, Love is an open door, the villain song? Talk about playing with your tropes!
The movie is not without it’s problems, Hans was weak and dumb about political maneuvers, but the reveal was great, the deus ex machina ship at the end, the flow of the plot is clunky in places, it has a little bit of pan-scandinavian confusion and I found the troll weak. The clunky parts are forgivable and Disney has never been one for 100% cultural authenticity so that is forgivable too. The design of the Trolls were boring and franky they don’t look look like they belong to this movie. They could have more fun with the designs. The only good thing about them was Olaf’s reaction. It would have been amazing if they had been inspired by the Moomins but then again I love the Moomins, so bias. The trolls are small issue it just wish there was more too them then moss cover rocks.
All in all Frozen was a great Disney movie. It had all the facets that make a Disney movie, memorable songs, characters and animation, and Let it Go had all these things. All the things Disney has been lacking recently . Could Frozen mark the next Golden Age? Only the next few movie will tell and hopefully they will be just as good as Frozen.