Tuesday, June 23, 2015

24: Frozen

And this isn't just because I have two pre-school-age daughters. Although, frankly, that's a part of it - without them I wouldn't have probably ever seen this film.

It's a strong story - a very loose retelling of 'The Snow Queen' but where the backstory is that the Snow Queen herself is essentially a victim of circumstance also. As I understand it, Disney intially thought the big strong concept in the film was of Anna, the younger sister, being the hero and trudging off through the snow to rescue her sister, and that it would therefore be Anna who would be the central character and role model for all the little girls watching it. Oh no, Disney, not even close.

Thing is, if you put an older sister in a stunning flowing dress with magical powers that she can't quite control, and give her the best song of the film, AND have that 'I can't quite be accepted by my family, I need to run away because I'm a little bit different' pre-teen thing going on, who do you THINK the girls are going to identify with? And that's what happened: Frozen came out and was huge, massive, [insert size-based adjective here] - stayed in the cinemas for months, the DVD release was an even bigger success, and Disney stores had to ration/auction the limited run of merchandise from the initial release because demand was so huge. Case-in-point - while searching eBay for Elsa dresses (because they weren't available anywhere else) during the first half of 2014 I saw one for a starting price of $1200. $1200! That was the going rate, apparently. Sheesh. I love my daughters but for $1200 I'd want a talking snowman to go with it.

Anyway - the movie IS good, really good, the story holds up to frequent re-watching (just as well really) and the soundtrack is, of course, totally first-rate, even if 'Let It Go' really is just another four-chord wonder. Wonderful characters - Olaf is a very special creation - and very special treats for those watching closely: yes, Rapunzel is there, but so - if you look very closely in the right spot at the right time - is Tiana from 'The Princess and the Frog'. Now THAT kind of Easter Egg is what pre-school girls like.

But even then, does that put it in the Top 40 when there's no place for 'Star Wars' and no place for 'The Godfather' and no place for 'Repo Man'? Answer: yes, because I enjoyed it more on first watching and enjoyed it more on subsequent watching, and today would rather watch Frozen that either of the other two. The fact I have two little girls is bonus points, although it's probably true that without them I'd never have paid it the slightest bit of attention in the first place.

No comments: