Disney is back with another animated feature with Princesses, but this latest offering FROZEN is rather different than the usual fare. With TANGLED, we got something we weren’t entire used to, it wasn’t a film reliant on the Princess needing a man to get herself out of trouble. It is great to see the old formula go out the window and Disney changing their ways. FROZEN takes it one step further by creating almost a new formula here. No longer is the film about a woman needing to find love, and that the love of her Prince will free her. This is about the love of family, and how circumstance can test that love and prove what really is important in life.
Our film begins with the introduction of Elsa and Anna, two Princess sisters. The elder sister Elsa however seems to have powers, she can freeze things and create snow. As the sisters play, Anna accidentally gets struck by Elsas powers and their parents need to take her to get saved. As a result they find out that Elsas powers are quite strong, and they decide the best way to protect her and those around her is to keep her separated from everyone. Anna doesn’t remember Elsa has her powers as a result of getting saved, and the two sisters grow up apart while still living in the same castle. After their parents pass away during a ship wreck, Elsa is set to become Queen and on her coronation day Anna makes a few decisions will test Elsa and as a result her powers get revealed. Elsa runs away scared and Anna makes it her mission to bring her sister home and unfreeze their city (as a result of Elsa’s fear).
Hopefully if you haven’t seen FROZEN that synopsis will not reveal too much. There is quite a lot happening in this film, and it is impressive they manage to get through it all in the 100 minute running time. The film has a fantastic pace, it moves at just the way it needs to, giving us an idea of the isolation of Elsa and the loneliness of Anna. During a great montage scene we actually get to know these two sisters quite well and their actions later in the film are fully justified and it makes sense. Perhaps the only real issue I had with this film, and it I hate to admit I had an issue, there are too many songs. While the songs are excellent for the most part, during the first half they are too frequent and unnecessary. Some how they manage not to harm the pace, but honestly it just wasn’t for me with how many there were. The grand number ‘Let It Go’ was fantastic and a great addition, so all was not lost there.
The voice performances are fantastic, Kristen Bell is just a delight as Princess Anna and Idina Menzel as Princess/Queen Elsa is very powerful. These two made that relationship very natural and very strong, there was a connection there between them. The animation really is jaw dropping and the combination of animation and voice work makes these two feel very real. Josh Gad as Olof was the comic relief and in what could have been an annoying character comes a lovable and endearing one. I was a very big fan of what he brought to the table, and the animation matched his work and then some. Jonathan Groff was very cool as Kristoff, the friend made along the way, he’s a very cute character and I do like the way he played it. Again the animation really was great for him and everything coming together brought him to life. Side characters are entertaining but it really is about those four and their relationships.
Disney have done a fantastic job with this film, and between this and TANGLED and I do love the direction they are taking their films. Disney are known for their Princesses and this new era of woman and Princess is very strong and very different. This is miles ahead of their early works like Cinderalla in terms of developing their main characters and giving them an inner strength that makes sure they don’t need saving. FROZEN has such a broad appeal, kids and parents alike can easily enjoy this and Anna and Elsa are two of the strongest female characters out of the Disney Princess group. I have seen this film several times and each is just as enjoyable, this is sure to become a classic and remembered for years to come.