As I’m busying my evenings getting through Oscar films and generally well received movies, Frozen is the latest one I’ve gotten round to. For weeks I’ve seen many people on my various social networking platforms raving about Frozen and its songs and characters. I’m not sure if hype surrounding a film excites me or just gets my expectations too high. Going in to a film blind is how it should be really.
The film is inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s ‘Snow Queen’ and stars the vocal talents of Idina Menzel as Elsa and Kristen Bell as Anna, two princess sisters. As young girls the two are very close and Anna delights in Elsa’s power allowing her to make it snow and turn things to ice. But when Elsa accidentally hits Anna’s head with her freezing powers, the King and Queen deem it unsafe,remove Anna’s memories of Elsa’s power and keep the two away from each other for years. That is, until the royals perish at sea and Elsa must step up as Queen but her powers make it difficult and when they are revealed to the kingdom she is branded a monster and flees to the mountains where she locks herself in her own ice castle, where Anna follows her to get some answers, get the Queen back and most importantly get her sister back.
Frozen seems to be one of Disney’s more original animations. They have mostly, though not completely, ditched the female character needing a prince or man to save her and add meaning to her life and instead have gone with sister’s needing each other and needing that bond. Like in Brave where the most important relationship is between mother and daughter. I think focusing on female bonds like these in ‘princess’ films is not only different but much better for young audiences and refreshing for older ones.
Christophe Beck was in charge for music in the film and at first I thought the songs were too much like those in ‘Wicked’ which made Idina Menzel’s career, as she starred as Elphaba, the green witch. They sounded alike in their format and style and arrangement and they would do well on stage. But after thinking about it, Christophe Beck was probably playing to Idina Menzel’s strengths and the songs are constructed well, earning the film an Oscar nomination for Best Song.
Elsa is strong, Anna is funny but Olaf is adorable and is a favorite among Frozen fans. The goofy little snowman, unaware that in heat he melts, is in love with the idea of summer and fires. He’s charming and no doubt is the highlight of the film.
Congratulations to Frozen and the team for creating a new princess film that doesn’t depend on men,vilify ladies or star Idina Menzel on Glee.
by Jen Gore