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Frozen – Changing the Way Disney Makes Movies

By: Kelly Tansor, Copy Editor (ktanso2@uic.edu)

I grew up watching Disney movies.  Some of my earliest memories are of my sister and me going over to our Nana’s house and watching Disney sing-along movies.  I’ve noticed that over the years, Disney’s animated movies have changed.  Their ideals have grown and evolved, and more people can relate to their films.  Their most recent film, Frozen, has gained a lot of popularity and, in my opinion, may be one of their best films ever made!

SPOILER ALERT!  SPOILER ALERT!  SPOILER ALERT!

Music
This film is very much a musical, but that’s no reason to be put off by it.  The songs make the audience feel like they are seeing a Broadway production. This makes sense, since much of the main cast (Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, and Jonathan Groff) all come from musical backgrounds.  Songs like “Let It Go” and “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” have become very popular since the movie first came out.  And, let’s admit it, the songs are pretty fun and catchy.

Animation
Disney incorporated CGI effects and hand-drawn animation to make this movie.  In every scene, Disney was able to catch the light on the snow and ice in a beautiful and almost realistic way.

But words don’t do it justice.  I think this clip can speak for itself:

Family
Policymic.com mentions that Elsa and Anna’s parents isolate Elsa from the entire kingdom and deem her dangerous.  They tell her to hide her powers as well as her emotions.  Because of this, Elsa becomes afraid of others and of herself.  Not many Disney movies show abusive parents in this light (you can argue Cinderella does, even though her real problem is her stepmother and not her actual parents).

A stronger value shown in the film, though, is the sisterly bond between Elsa and Anna.  Most Disney princesses in the past were either on their own or had siblings that were stuck-up or just plain mean (i.e. Cinderella and The Little Mermaid).  Elsa and Anna, however, have a close bond, despite Elsa shutting out Anna for most of her life.  When Elsa runs away, Anna goes out in a world she never visited before just to bring her sister back.  In the end, it is the love that the girls have for each other that saves Arendelle – and each other.

As Idina Menzel, voice of Elsa, says herself, “it’s essentially about sisterhood. I think that these two women are competitive with one another, but always trying to protect each other – sisters are just so complicated. It’s such a great relationship to have in movies, especially for young kids.”

Marriage

Frozen - Quote1

It’s about time Disney figured that out…

Heroine
Brave was one of the first Disney movies that really featured a female heroine that everyone can relate to.  Merida was outgoing, outspoken, independent, and heroic.  She wasn’t exactly the poster-child for sophistication – most princesses don’t practice archery!

Anna is yet another female heroine Disney is embracing.  She isn’t the typical quiet, timid Disney princess we are used to seeing.  She goes against the odds to save her kingdom – and her sister.  We’re so used to seeing the handsome prince being the hero, but many movies nowadays (Brave is a popular example) are showing more female heroines as opposed to male heroes.  Anna is also very relatable; she is clumsy, she is quirky, and she gets very shy around cute boys.  Almost every girl can relate to her, even if she is a princess.

Love
When Anna is told that only true love can heal her frozen heart, she believes that kissing her “fiancée” will be enough.  This seems  like Disney going back to their old way of thinking – only a kiss by a hot guy will save your life.  However, in the end, it is the love and sacrifice Anna shows for Elsa that saves her from being frozen.

I loved Frozen and I am very proud that Disney is making more movies that embrace family, female empowerment, and independence.  The soundtrack is great and every song feels like it is from a real-life stage show.  The animation is brilliant and leaves me at a loss for words.  The characters are hilarious, especially Olaf, who is one of the most adorable sidekicks I’ve seen in a Disney movie since Lilo & Stitch.  This movie has action, romance, and comedy, and is definitely a movie for all ages to enjoy.

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1 Comment

  1. david tansor says:

    Great article, good writing made me want to go see it.
    Love NANA & UNCLE DAVE

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