Verdict: 4.5 / 5
Having won the award for best-animated feature film at the 71st Golden Globe awards and boasting a lead cast who all have a background on Broadway, you can expect “Frozen” to be one of Disney’s best animated musical feature films in years. It has all the charm and catchy tunes reminiscent of the classic Disney films whilst still being able to modernise our ideas of what a typical Disney princess should be.
Loosely based (very loosely) on Hans Christian Andersens “The Snow Queen”, Frozen is a tale of two very different Nordic princesses. Anna (Kristen Bell) is an awkward and headstrong young woman with a very optimistic view on life. The other sister and future queen, Elsa, (Idina Menzel) spends her life frightened by her inability to control the powers she was born with causing her parents to estrange her from the outside world and even her sister. On the day of Elsa’s coronation, three years after her parents die at sea, when Anna announces her very hasty engagement to handsome prince Hans (Santino Fontana), Elsa kind of loses her cool exposing the abilities she has tried her whole life to hide. Whilst trying to flee to the mountains, a panicked Elsa accidently sets off a perpetual winter freezing all of Arendelle. It’s up to Anna, ice harvester/mountain man Kristoff (Jonathan Groff),his trusty reindeer, Sven, and a magical snowman, Olaf (Josh Gad), to find Elsa and convince her to return to Arendelle and reverse the wintery state she has caused.
What sets frozen apart from the Disney movies of late are the really great, catchy songs written by husband and wife team Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez. Songs such as “Do You Want to Build a Snowman”, “Let it go” and “In the Summer” will be stuck in your head for a while after watching this movie and not even in the annoying way (maybe a little annoying for others around you). But it’s not just the music and catchy lyrics that are good, the entire musical sequence is really well thought out and so fitting to the emotion of the songs. The utilisation of both Computer-generated imagery (CGI) and hand drawn animation also proves to be quite ingenious as the animation is absolutely breath-taking in this animated film. You actually feel as though you are transported to some magical ice land (a jacket may be required).
Although the storyline is somewhat predictable, Frozen does have some unexpected twists and turns, lovable characters who make the journey worthwhile and not to mention a cameo appearance by Tangled’s Rapunzel and Flynn Ryder (if you can spot them in the crowd). All in all this film is extremely entertaining for viewers of any age and is well worth watching.