Frozen is a likeable story about two sisters and the tunes are catchy enough, but even with a modern twist on an old fairy tale formula, Disney still plays its safe with a calculated narrative.
Fearless optimist Anna teams up with Kristoff in an epic journey, encountering Everest-like conditions, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf in a race to find Anna’s sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.
Ditching the fairy tale formula of yore, Frozen focuses on two sisters. The film’s animation is delightfully detailed, especially the ice and snow.
While the message is modern, Disney plays it safe by veering away from the conflicted Elsa, which could have provided a more compelling story than Anna’s typical hero journey. The rest of the group is affable but predictable – the “fixer upper” Kristoff, the pet that serves as comic relief and the snowman that serves as a plot device. The choice of villain breaks a long tradition of a certain trope, but it doesn’t quite stack up to its predecessors.
Yes, the music did have catchy sing along pop tunes (I kept hearing “do you wanna build a snowman?” inside my head), but sub par to Disney’s classic ensemble pieces that remind you of Broadway musicals.
While Frozen doesn’t have a noteworthy villain and epic music (Let it Go is nice but not exceptional compared to Alan Menken’s work), the ending did take me by surprise. In a long line of animated films where women are usually pitted against each other until some square jawed prince comes along to save the day, it’s refreshing to see sisterly bonding that also highlights female strength. It passes the Bechdel Test too. Overall, this is still an enjoyable movie for little girls.
My Rating: 7/10