At the risk of sounding sexist or biased, I have to admit that I put off watching Disney’s 2013 blockbuster hit Frozen because, honestly, I thought that it was a “girl movie”. Even more than that, it was a Disney musical “girl movie”. But when my Disney-loving, movie-guru girlfriend finally convinced me to watch it with her after weeks of putting it off, I found that my pseudo-macho, geeky, “manly” taste in movies had kept me from seeing what I now consider one of the best animated films of all time. “For the first time in FOREVER” I found myself a fan of a Disney Princess film (*Note: As of 07/17/2014 the sisters from Frozen are not yet officially part of the Disney Princess lineup*).
The film centers on princess-turned-queen Elsa, who was born with amazing cryogenic powers. After a childhood accident in which her powers accidentally injure her younger sister, Anna, the king and queen isolate Elsa from Anna and have a magical troll erase Anna’s memories of her sister’s abilities. The rest of the film, for spoiler purposes, is about the consequences of Elsa’s isolationism when her powers are finally revealed to her kingdom.
Filled with catchy Disney songs, lovable characters and, literally, the right amount of magic, Frozen grossed over one billion dollars in the box office. As always, there are plenty of moral lessons to be learned. What I thought was really neat was that instead of simply re-teaching the classic values of “don’t judge a book by its cover” and “follow your heart” that most Disney films convey, this movie has added a bit of modernism to the mix. In an age where young people are rushing to get married and jumping into relationships without thinking things through, Frozen humorously reminds us not to jump into marriage with someone you just met.
When you think of someone having cryogenic powers one would usually think “superhero”, especially with Disney pushing out box office hits left and right after its acquisition of Marvel. Instead, Disney has given us a tale of sisterly love, a snowman who longs to feel heat, a man who talks to his reindeer and match-making trolls. All in all, a fantastic film without falling into the old (and new) Walt Disney Company clichés. My one criticism of the film is that the trolls, tiny, stone creatures with vibrant personality and wisdom, only appeared in a couple of scenes. The animators put a good deal of work into them and gave them a great deal of potential but in the end only gave them minor screen time. I am very anxious to see if Disney will give them either a TV show or their own spin-off movie. A short film would even suffice. I just felt that the trolls were such an intricate part of the plot that they deserve more time on the big screen.
A solid “A” effort.