Our Score: 5 out of 5 stars
Disney has a decent go-to formula with some of their classics. First we start off with a story centered around a princess. Then we have some wonderfully crafted music and a heart warming theme to accompany it. Alright so let’s go down this shortened list before we get ahead of ourselves. We have not one, but two lovable leading ladies. The music is not only fast paced and fun, but incredibly catchy (I’ve still got it stuck in my head as I type this). And of course we have a very touching story about the love and acceptance between two sisters. By taking that well-made scheme and rubbing in some fresh twists, Disney has crafted another instant classic.
Today’s coronation is special for more than one reason. Anna (Bell) is finally seeing the dark empty halls of the castle she’s grown up in come alive with people. Her older sister Elsa (Menzel) will be made queen, but she’s less than eager to step outside her room. This is because Elsa contains the power to manipulate snow and ice. Without gloves concealing her hands, she doesn’t have much control over her abilities. Also at a young age, she harmed her sister Anna with her powers and was scared into never revealing her skills. Things don’t go as plan as pressure from the party gets to Elsa and her powers are unleashed in a frightening manner. She flees into the mountains as people call her “monster” and “sorceress”. Upon leaving and finally giving into her powers, she has brought forth fierce blizzard.
The beginning of this movie is fantastic because we’re not given the usual set-up of a villain. We sense that almost every character means well, but we know that at least one of them is putting up a front. Or maybe enough time hasn’t passed for someone’s true evil to set in. We know it will happen, but until then, Elsa plans to follow her sister into the harsh mountains. She’s aided by Kristoff (Groff) and his reindeer Sven. He’s not your traditional knight in shining armor, but as the story progresses, he grows from a delightful goof to a loving warrior. Prepare to be blown away by the layers of heart and soul that this movie has.
I generally believe that audiences don’t have any high expectations with Disney movies anymore. Heading into this though, I feel like Disney set a really high mark for themselves and achieved that with this ensemble cast of Broadway actors. Even Kristen Bell was marvelous with her solo songs. She has some magnificent duets with Idina Menzel. Disney seems to be aiming for that theatrical magic that they had with some of their classics like “Beauty and the Beast”. They’ve hit the bullseye on this one. The music flows wonderfully and the lyrics are so in tune with the character’s emotions and feelings. Someone needs to hand the Academy “For the First Time in Forever” and “Let it Go” for consideration this year.
We also have some genuine laughs from the movies most innocent, cute and charming character, Olaf, a talking snowman. Every character design is flawless. The animation is breathtakingly gorgeous. Multiple scenes had me stunned at how detailed and intricate the animation was as it moved at a rapid rate. I felt like I was watching a frozen world evolve before my eyes. It’s obvious from this movie, that Disney has been taking notes from Pixar for a while now. I think if the guys at Pixar watch this though, they might wanna start taking notes from Disney again.