When you have a toddler, it’s hard to do things. Even simple things, like going to the movies. So with the grandparents watching her, we were finally able to get to go see Frozen - a full three months (nearly) after it opened.
Wow. Hands down the best Disney movie since The Lion King hit theaters 20 years ago. Probably the best movie I’ve seen since Avatar as well. The animation was gorgeous, the music was top-notch, and story was refreshingly different from typical Disney “princess” fare.
Moreover, it feels like Disney is Disney again. If The Lion King was the peak of Disney in the 1990s, we went down into a pretty deep funk there for a little while, bottoming out with Home on the Range. It finally started to turn around with Bolt and now it almost feels like we’re back where we left off.
A small part of me still bemoans the death of hand-drawn cell animation. There’s just something to be said for the rough, 2D look. But, I really think the success of those 2D films wasn’t due to the animation, but the quality story. If you start with a bad story, all the greatest animators in the world won’t be able to save you (see Home on the Range, Chicken Little).
Now, that said, the animation in Frozen, despite being computer generated, feels more honest than any previous computer animated film. You really feel like, finally, the method has grown up to the point where it’t not jarring and weird - or maybe enough time has passed that we’re used to it now. It takes a back-seat fo the storytelling. And, besides, when you step back and look at the end product, it’s just gorgeously done!
Also, it’s nice to see the comeback of the “big pop song” to go along with the movie - a la Elton John’s “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” (seriously, you could not swing a dead cat in the mid 1990s and not hit that song - it was everywhere). Idina Menzel’s “Let It Go” is a worthy successor to that throne (and, like Elton’s song, it too won an Oscar for Best Original Song).
In short, if you haven’t seen it already, drop what you’re doing and go see it right now. Heck, it will probably be out on DVD before the end of the month.
Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know
Well, now they know
Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore
Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door
I don’t care
What they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway