Thursday, December 26, 2013

Movie Review: Disney's Frozen

I had the pleasure of seeing Disney’s new animated film Frozen in a Drive-In movie theatre. It was a special experience, and one I won’t forget soon.

Frozen is loosely inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale The Snow Queen. I am not familiar with this story, but my guess is that the story of Frozen is essentially an original story for the screen, and not a direct adaptation of The Snow Queen.

Elsa is a princess with special powers: she can make things frozen with her hands. But she doesn’t have full control over her powers. Her sister Anna doesn’t know about these powers, but finds herself face to face with them on the day of her engagement. Anna now goes on a journey with a new friend Kristoff to help her sister Elsa.

The main characters of Frozen.
The main characters of Frozen.

This film was always going to get comparisons with 2010’s Tangled, Disney’s adaptation of Rapunzel. In my opinion, Frozen is a much better movie. In Tangled the presentations of the backstory felt rushed. In Frozen the introduction to the story is carefully told, not rushed at all. In fact, Frozen’s pacing is incredibly well handled. The music and animation made me feel something grand and classic was happening, right from the opening sequences.

The animation is excellent, as you would expect from a Disney animation. The music, by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez is much better than Alan Menken’s songs for Tangled, mainly in the fact that they are more singable and memorable.

The characters are well defined and appropriately lovable. And there is some great quality humour throughout the story.

Kristoff on a mission!
Kristoff on a mission!

A concern for me in Frozen was that the ending came upon us quite quickly. And the fact that  (spoiler ahead!) the inhabitants of Arendelle call the winter that Elsa imposes “an eternal winter” just reminds me too much of the Narnia stories. Plus, it doesn’t make sense, since they have no proof that it is eternal when it’s only been for a few days!

I loved Frozen. It feels like, with Wreck It Ralph, a number of the Pixar movies and now Frozen, that we are in a new golden age of Disney animation. I can’t wait to see more from this current generation of Disney filmmakers. I can’t wait for next year’s Big Hero 6 and The Good Dinosaur.

I gave Frozen 4 stars since it was a very enjoyable movie and I want to see it again.
By Jonathan