What it’s up for: Best Animated Feature, Music (Original Song)
Disclaimer: I take Disney movies very seriously.
I got to see Frozen with my sisters which was awesome and appropriate. Frozen, if you don’t know already, follows the story of two princesses in a land called Arendelle. The movie begins with Elsa, the older sister, being crowned queen. However, she is hiding a mysterious power over ice and snow from everyone – including her sister Anna.
Spoilers will truly ruin this movie for you if you haven’t seen it yet, so I will avoid them as much as possible.
It’s hard to ignore the presence of Frozen. It doesn’t matter where I go, if there are kids around and I mention Frozen, suddenly someone will start singing about snowmen or letting it go. It helps that it was basically the only kid movie in theaters through the holiday season. Now, I’m not saying that’s WHY it has almost beat The Lion King in box office stats, but it’s definitely a factor.
I…liked Frozen. I didn’t love it. For the first half of the movie, I felt this uncomfortable confusion over what was happening. For example, there’s a love song that Anna and Hans sing that seems like it’s supposed to be taken seriously at first but it’s not. Fortunately during this first half, I was distracted by several “Arrested Development” references, which was AMAZING. About halfway through, things turned around for me due to Olaf the snowman. The hilarious choice to make Olaf more of a background character who makes random comments that everyone ignores made a huge difference in the tone of the film. It definitely appealed to the YouTube/Instagram video/Vine generation’s sense of comedic timing.
There were good morals and lessons throughout for both characters, but those were pretty predictable. I keep comparing it to Wreck It Ralph and although there were more twists in Frozen, the overall emotion of Ralph was stronger because you didn’t know HOW they were going to solve the problems in Ralph’s world. That’s probably just me, though. My biggest issue was the lack of character development for Elsa and Kristoff. They are both VERY important characters who are not given much screen time to learn about what’s going on with them.
sort of SPOILERS START
The other thing that bugs me is that everyone keeps talking about how nice it is that the focus of the princesses is not on finding a prince but on learning the importance of familial love. I counted the other day, and out of the current official 11 Disney princesses, only 2 (or arguably 3) focus on finding a significant other. (Snow White and Aurora aka Sleeping Beauty. Ariel is the other arguable one but her original focus is on wanting to experience land life, so I don’t think she counts.) The other 9 (8) princesses find true love on their way to something else. Not to mention, familial love is a huge part of 7 of 11 princess stories (Merida, Tiana, Pocahontas, Mulan, Belle, Ariel, Rapunzel). NOT TO MENTION, focusing on the love between the princess and one of her family members as the cure to a curse is the EXACT theme of Brave. And if we add Anna and Elsa to the list of princesses, Anna would be added to the list of looking for true love in the form of a man, since she sings a whole song about it in the beginning of the movie.
I need to see the movie again. I think I’d like it more now after knowing what I’m walking in to. The soundtrack is amazing and it’ll totally be a political move if “Let It Go” doesn’t win best song.
Animated Feature Film: Definitely.
Best song: Very possible.