It is day 22 of our 30 Days of Thanks, and we here at Cape & Castle are thankful for Disney’s animated Frozen. The animation was wonderful and the tunes are appealing. Let’s not forget the voice cast is remarkable. Whoever hired these amazing Broadway stars: we thank you. However, these delights are just the tip of the iceberg.
The beautiful story
So why else are we thankful for Frozen? First, we lauded the writings for their complex characterization, interactive humor, a delicately changing tone and the wonderful story arc. It’s a traditional hero’s quest, recognizable even before we grasp what will unfold. But the usual Disney template accompanied by twists, and it is these twists that form the basis of our appreciation.
Frozen has two Disney princesses, however they do not suit the traditional mold. It ridiculed a royal betrothal in typical love at first sight—a charming prince is a rotten apple. The finale gives us devotion between two sisters rather than typical romance between prince and princess. The vibrant, younger princess Anna is to rescue her sister–something that her sidekick Kristoff embraces without a single bleating or mansplain.
The life lessons
We’re thankful for the film’s real power and the lessons we gain: “The truth, girls can also be heroes,” “You can choose if you trust someone and if you don’t, that’s okay,” and “It’s okay to be yourself.”
Initially the villain of the story was Elsa, the complex, mysterious older sister with icy powers. The movie was rewritten when Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez composed “Let It Go” as an inspiration to self-acceptance.
Elsa, voiced by Idina Menzel, is the favorite towards the film’s younger viewers. We’re fascinated by her mix of powers and how she responds to them. Her anthem, which Anderson-Lopez has said will encourage us to “screw fear and shame, be yourself, be powerful,” has became a source of inspiration for a huge cross section of adults, too, especially those feeling ostracized by society, being ridiculed for being different, and survivors of loss.
We are thankful for Frozen because it gives us hope, and we need that more than ever. If a cultural influence as important as Disney creates female heroes to inspire self-acceptation and empathy and positively reflect parenting of the same gender, then perhaps the next generation will inspire to continue to do a good job on its own.
Why are we thankful for Frozen? Because the future that so many of us want was reflected in this film. Frozen is taking some significant steps, and it’s paying off.
We can’t wait to see what happens when they go even further in Frozen 2, in theaters today! Be on the lookout for our Frozen 2 review coming soon!