Reviewed By

Christopher Armstead
I do have a tiny bone to pick with Disney and their distrustful marketing department in regards to their otherwise enchanting CGI film 'Frozen'.  I rarely watch live TV, only on football Sunday, and thus the Disney Marketing machine decided to market this movie to me, featuring characters playing football.  Not a single song reference, no dance numbers, just strapping CGI dudes and a snowman kicking around a football.  Guess what?  Ain't nobody playing any football in this movie.  What's up with that?  What I did get roped into was CGI chicks singing about being in love and stuff.  Well played distrustful Disney marketing execs… well played. 

Princess Elsa (Voiced by Idina Menzell) is some kind of mutant.  Apparently she was born with the power to turn stuff into ice, a power that her beloved little sister Anna (Kristen Bell) just loves to have fun with as they go outside and make snowmen and whatnot.  Unfortunately Elsa accidentally pelts her sister's dome with an arctic blast, which places Anna is some physical distress until she is saved by the neighborhood trolls.  The good thing, according to the Troll King (Cieran Hinds) is that Elsa zapped Anna's brain, which is a quick fix.  If Elsa had zapped Anna's heart… well… that would be bad.  The fallout from this event is that Elsa's folks, the King and Queen, now have to take great pains to keep Elsa's mutant power a secret, even brainwashing Anna into forgetting her sister has this power, and to keep her from hurting her sister again, she has been instructed to avoid her which makes Anna very sad. 

Anna and Elsa both grow up into hot CGI chicks, their parents tragically leave the Earth, and now is the day for Princess Elsa to face the world, for first time since forever, as Queen Elsa.  This is a big day for Anna as well as the gates of the palace will finally be opened and she can finally find love, and gosh darn if love isn't right there waiting for her in Prince Hans (Santino Fontana).  So in love
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is Anna with Hans that she wants to marry him right there.  Even though they just met.  I'm pretty sure it's a hormonal thing more than love but this a Disney movie so they didn't go there.  Problem is, Elsa being the mature one, says no which cascades forth an unfortunate series of events in which Elsa's mutant powers are revealed to one and all, and unfortunately leads to the Elsa unknowingly freezing all of the kingdom of Arrendale. 

Elsa flees to be by herself, Anna follows to bring her sister back and hopefully help her fix the constant winter she created.  Anna is assisted in her adventure by the strapping Ice farmer… that's what he is… Kristoff (Jonathan Groff), his trusty reindeer sidekick Sven, and the funny walking talking snowman Olaf (Josh Gad).  Why is there a walking talking snowman?  Because we need something to stick in happy meals and on toy store shelves, that's why.

Elsa does not want to be bothered, seriously.  Truth be told, Elsa is pretty darned dangerous.  In fact Elsa puts her sister in kind of a bad way that only a classic Disney resolution can fix.  Or maybe not.  Look at Disney getting a little twisty on us. 

So I enjoyed 'Frozen' as it was a superbly animated, wonderfully voice acted, fast moving film that is a nod to the Disney movies of old with an added healthy dose of Grrrl Power.  I could be wrong here, but I think this is the first Disney CGI animated musical.  I'm sure other movies might've had a song here and there, but this one was more along the lines of 'Snow White' and 'Cinderella' or 'Mary Poppins' with the way the songs were presented.  Now we did just see 'Saving Mr. Banks' a couple of days ago, and there were no Sherman-esque memorable 'Supercalifragilistic' or 'Spoon Full of Sugar' type songs in the mix, but team Lopez still did well with the songs.  And did Kristen Bell do her own singing?  Impressive if she did.

Now if we wanted to be critical of 'Frozen' we could mention that the story was all over the place and was lacking in cohesion, offset by the fact that this was largely an action movie that moved on rails so it's hard to notice this.  Even the song sets were action filled.  We could also point out that movie has no classic Disney villain, though one was revealed to us near the end, but that also brings up some rather inconsistent characterization and also tosses in some tonal unevenness into the mix.  Tonal Unevenness.  How about that for a critical term?  These movies tend to be at their best when there's someone completely evil to root against.  For the majority of this movie the only person to root against was Princess Elsa, and we didn't want to root against her.

Still, 'Frozen' was a very entertaining, funny, thrill ride of a romp.  As I always say when reviewing these CGI movies, they are largely for children, despite some slightly disturbing imagery in this one which might frighten the youngest children, and I'm thinking kids will love it.  Plus it has a little bit extra to keep the older kids entertained as well.
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