Disney’s FROZEN Movie Review

Disney Frozen PosterI’m so excited that Disney FROZEN is finally hitting theaters TODAY (Wednesday, November 27th)! Dur­ing my trip to The Walt Dis­ney Stu­dios lot in August, I got to spend time inside the famed Dis­ney Ani­ma­tion Build­ing. Once inside, we were treated to some very spe­cial sneak peeks of FROZEN (includ­ing some rough/unfinished seg­ments) and we were the first US audi­ence (out­side of the Dis­ney com­pany) to see the ani­mated short Get a Horse that accom­panies FROZEN. From what I had seen, everything was amazing. But, they didn’t show us the beginning or the end. So, I was SOOOOO excited to finally get to see the whole thing! The boys and I even had a little FROZEN fun surprise breakfast to build excitement!

Here’s the FROZEN trailer in case you haven’t seen any previews:

About the movie:

{From the press release}: In Frozen, fear­less opti­mist Anna (voice of Kris­ten Bell) sets off on an epic journey—teaming up with rugged moun­tain man Kristoff (voice of Jonathan Groff) and his loyal rein­deer Sven—to find her sis­ter Elsa (voice of Idina Men­zel), whose icy pow­ers have trapped the king­dom of Aren­delle in eter­nal win­ter. Encoun­ter­ing Everest-like con­di­tions, mys­ti­cal trolls and a hilar­i­ous snow­man named Olaf, Anna and Kristoff bat­tle the ele­ments in a race to save the king­dom. 

Anna, Olaf, & Kristoff in Disney's FrzoenIt’s a tale of two sisters – who start out so very close (and adorable I might add). But, an accident caused by Elsa’s uncontrolled powers injures Anna. Elsa is essentially then hidden away, being forced to try hide her powers and to “conceal; don’t feel; don’t let them know”. Because of this, the sisters become estranged. On Elsa’s coronation day, initial excitement between the sisters quickly wanes due to a rash decision made by Anna. In a fearful & emotional moment for Elsa (which is what sets off her uncontrolled powers), she accidentally freezes the entire fjord and kingdom of Aren­delle. What happens next is a series of adventures, peril, and some hilarity as Anna tries to go get her sister back (both literally and figuratively) and free the kingdom from the eternal winter. Things of course don’t all go according to plan. And, in true Disney princess fashion, only an act of “true love” can save the day! However, without giving the whole thing away, the act of true love is not exactly the “true love’s kiss” that you might be expecting. In fact, there are TWO rather big plot twists toward the end of this movie that I did NOT see coming!  Disney's Frozen Image

Our thoughts…

In FROZEN, very loosely based on Hans Chris­t­ian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen”, you’ll find elements that are absolutely classic Disney with some new twists as well. First up, the musical score comes closest of any Disney film in recent memory to the Howard Ashman genuis of The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and Aladdin. It has a much more Broadway/theater feel to it than many of the recent musical Disney films, and this former drama geek loved it! Elsa is voiced by Idina Men­zel of “Wicked” fame, who played the role of Elphaba in the Broadway musical. And, in many ways, FROZEN has a lot of similarities to that critically-acclaimed musical. The misunderstood Elsa and Elphaba have MUCH more in common than just the amazing voice behind them. And, speaking of amazing voice…Idina Menzel is great in this movie! Her big song, “Let it go”, it just absolutely fabulous – perfect for belting out (I’ve already downloaded the soundtrack)! It’s chilling – in a good way!  Elsa from Disney's FrozenAnna (voiced by Kristin Bell) has that innocent, fun, and spunky feel that everyone seemed to love in Disney’s last princess movie, Tangled. There was something very reminiscent of Rapunzel in Anna. So, there is more Disney familiarity there too. Kristin Bell did a great job with the role – and I had NO ideas she could sing so well!!  She is REALLY good and plays the fun, stereotypical younger sister very well!  Anna from Disney FrozenObviously, one of the most notable differences in this movie compared to classic Disney princess shows is that the story line features two princesses – each with a lot of importance (though princess Anna does get more screentime). So, it was great to see a show with two female leads (where the lines between good & evil are not absolutely black & white) and a different twist on the stereotypical princess story. After seeing Merida’s coronation, I can’t imagine how awesome the coronation day will be when both of these princesses are welcomed to the Disney Princess Court!  Disney FROZEN SistersI’m sure little girls will absolutely fall in love with the mystery & beauty of Elsa and the fun, spunky, adorable Anna. But, for my boys, this movie was all about Kristoff, Sven, and Olaf! Oh my goodness! Little Brother actually squealed with delight in a few scenes. Sven (the reindeer) and Olaf (the silly snowman) provide some great comic relief, yet are also the center of some very touching moments. My boys seriously could not get enough of these guys! And, I’m so glad these 3 characters were in so much of the movie. So, for anyone who says this movie is completely geared toward the girls, I say, “not so”. My boys had no problem relating to and enjoying what most would call a “princess movie” thanks to these three male characters!Disney's FrozenAnd, I can’t forget to mention the scenery in the movie – it’s breathtaking! The snow and ice animation are so incredibly well done. You feel completely immersed in a chilling, wonderland of ice and snow. Elsa’ ice palace is absolutely stunning – and a truly amazing wonder of animation. I saw parts of it in uncut, raw animation form. So, to see it all completed now took my breath away.  Visually, I think it might arguably be the prettiest of any of the Disney films. And, the winter wonderland is perfect for a holiday season release! Disney Frozen Ice PalaceSo, we give this latest Disney film very enthusiastic thumbs-up! It’s got a classic Disney feel, with some more modern twists. There’s awesome music, gorgeous animation, adventure, peril, and humor (and thankfully, not much of it is the obnoxious crude humor that I’m not a fan of). It’s got a few twists that I didn’t see coming and a great message at the heart of it. As Director Jennifer Lee (who happens to be the first female lead Director on an animated Disney feature film) shared with us at the Animation Studios during, Disney’s FROZEN shows us that “not even the coldest forces on Earth are a match for the bonds of family”.

Are YOU excited for this new Dis­ney movie?

For more from FROZEN, you can fol­low along on Face­book, Twit­ter, and the offi­cial web­site! This post is already plenty long, but also worth noting is that the animated short before the film (“Get a Horse”) is an amazing feat of animation in itself. To read more about it, please click over to my previous post here —> Get a Horse Animated Short.

Dis­clo­sure: We saw this movie at a free press screen­ing at the invi­ta­tion of Dis­ney.  All opin­ions and expe­ri­ences are 100% my own and your opin­ion of the movie may dif­fer from mine.

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