Frozen (2013) – Film Review


Disney’s unstoppable directorial duo of Chris Buck & Jennifer Lee have struck financial gold and received great critical acclaim, bucking the revitalised trend of the animated musical. Having won Best Animated Feature in practically every award ceremony possible and on the road once again to Oscar’s success: Is this festive snowflake that different from the rest? MIGHT CONTAIN SPOILERS

Essentially, it is their 2010 release “Tangled”, yet cleverly rebranded in the winter. Set in the same fantastical time period, Princess Elsa (Idina Menzel) possesses Cryokinesis (the ability to create ice and snow) and her powers when uncontrolled, are potentially dangerous. In fear, her royal parents hide her away, even from her lonely sister Anna (Kristen Bell); wiping her memory of all the happiness they shared together. Later at Elsa’s coronation, an emotional argument with Anna causes her to freeze the world, frightening the Kingdom and resulting in the princess running away. The movie details Anna’s journey to locate her sister, rekindle their friendship and ensure she restores the order of nature, whilst becoming the rightful Queen of the realm.

Elsa’s spells bring to life the eager snowman Olaf (Josh Gad) whose goofiness makes him the perfect sidekick for a children’s audience. His mixture of physical comedy and off the wall gags are predominantly enjoyable and his desperation to see the sun is a nice touch. Nonetheless there are a few recycled jokes, a grumpy horse for example is a lazy character taken straight from “Tangled”. Further to the story are male love interests, a seemingly perfect nobleman Hans (Santino Fontana) and the understated, yet loyal Kristoff (Jonathan Groff). Despite their competition to woo the naïve Anna, The main attraction regarding “Frozen” is the feminist message that it portrays: Women can succeed without male control, a topic recently touched upon in a “Ted” talks lecture.  Disney’s visual effects are always notable and this is no exception. Children are no doubt transported to a winter wonderland and for a family film; it is of course worth a watch.

Nonetheless, its endless dead cert expectations in this year’s Academy Awards are bewildering, when pitted against the brilliance of Miyazaki and French beauty “Ernest & Celestine”. Its formulaic approach is fundamental to the film’s box office success, yet I find Disney’s latest offering heavily overrated.

IMDB Rating: 8.0

My Rating: 7

Max Hilton


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