Kyle J. Steenblik

Disney will leave no hearts Frozen this Thanksgiving

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Frozen is a chilling reminder of how beautiful and spellbinding animation can be when coupled with a fantastical story and strong, genuinely lovable characters.

icecastleEvery now and then, I have the pleasure to see a film that is utterly enchanting and an absolute pleasure to watch.  Animated features have the ability, when well done, to fill an audience of any age with wonder and amazement.  Such was Disney’s Frozen.  The animation was beautiful, and filled with endearing characters, well-crafted humor, and a strong story.  The musical numbers were very contemporary, not my normal taste, but they were strong.  Well written and orchestrated, bound to be added to my daughter’s collection of songs she listens to a thousand times.

When I asked my children what they thought of the movie they enthusiastically declared their undying love.  When I asked why they loved it, or what they loved about it, they froze, and after a very long period of contemplation, they loved the magic, and the funny parts.  The magic was mesmerizing, and gorgeous, I was not surprised that was my daughter’s favorite part.  The humor, which was my son’s favorite, ran on two levels.  There was enough sophisticated humor, enough to make the film enjoyable as a comedy for parents, and enough slapstick goofy humor to be enjoyable to the youngest members of the audience.  In other words, it was a very well rounded film with something for everyone.

Based on The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Andersen; Sisters Anna (Kristen Bell) and Elsa (Idina Menzel) are torn apart when Elsa’s magical powers cause an accident endangering her sister’s life.  To keep Anna safe the magical mountain trolls remove the memory of Elsa’s magic, and warn her parents her powers could become too powerful if she is emotionally overwhelmed.  On Elsa’s coronation day, Anna meets Hans (Santino Fontana), falls hopelessly in love and announced her immediate engagement.  This causes Elsa to lose control of her powers and she flees the city, inadvertently freezing the kingdom of Arendell in an unnatural winter in July.  It is up to Anna, and her new friend Kristoff (Jonathan Groff) and his reindeer Sven to bring Elsa home and thaw the frozen kingdom.

sistersTake your children to see this movie, especially if those children also happen to be daughters, and sisters.  I loath to give too much away, because there are some nice surprises in this movie, I will say this is continuing, and in some ways, expanding on the growing trend to have very strong female characters in children’s movies.  I like this trend very much, and this also gained the praise of my strong female spousal partner.

The one thing, that I found mildly annoying, was the snowman Olaf (Josh Gad).  It was only a mild annoyance, he didn’t do very much to progress the story, and was a comedic device for the youngest, but even so, it was not the lowest common denominator type of humor.  It was clever, innocent humor, but added very little to the overall story.  I could have lived without that character, but my son could not.

The film really was an effective and imaginative retelling of a classic story.  Granted a story that is much darker than this film, however they did retain some of the darkness in the themes presented.  The themes of loyalty, and love between siblings are presented in the most genuine way I could imagine.  The actions of the characters seem natural and relatable, which soundly drives home the overall moral.

Frozen is a sold 9 of 10 for parents, 10 for children.  Go see this movie.

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