Wednesday, among the mess and chaos that is the day before Thanksgiving, John and I took Caitlin to see the new Disney film Frozen. Walking in I knew three things about the movie: there were two sisters, a guy (isn't there always), and a really cute snowman named Olaf. That's it. So like with many kiddo flicks I went in with no expectation. Don't get me wrong, I love me some Disney animation. This is the girl who wanted to see the Little Mermaid and begged her mom to take her for weeks. I'm the girl who will watch Ratatouille always, and loves the score for Princess and the Frog. But it is my experience that Disney movies are about falling in love and or being saved by a prince. Ask me how I feel about Rapunzel becoming a brunette after her magic hair was cut off. Flynn rider or not, that was just lame-o.
So we settled in with our five dollar waters and our seventeen dollar Mike and Ike's, and prepared ourselves for another Princess giving up something for love or country or self awareness.
For the most part, Frozen starts out like most Disney movies, with a tragedy. Two sisters who are best friends, Elsa with the magical powers of ice, Anna who is a regular Joe, and like to play in the snow that Elsa makes indoors. It's all fun and games until oops, Anna, who is clearly not listening to Elsa, doesn't slow down and is hit in the head with some of Elsa's ice magic. Cue the magic trolls who remove all Anna's memories of her sisters powers, and enter the vow for the royal parents to keep Elsa in the castle hidden from the world as to hide her magical and uncontrollable powers. Of course that's not the worst of it, as the girls become teenagers the Royal Parents die on their ship in a storm, leaving the castle closed until Elsa comes of age to take the throne. All the while, Anna confused as to why Elsa stays locked in her room, ignoring her, and Anna herself locked in the castle.
Fast forward to Coronation Weekend where Anna is let loose of the castle gates like a college freshman in Daytona on Spring Break. She's singing and twirling and oops almost falls into the water at the dock via a canoe of some kind. Anna this is getting serious, please watch what you are doing. I know you are excited, but you are second in line. Don't go all Prince Harry on us. Of course Anna is saved just in time by Prince Hans, a cool and handsome Prince with a great smile and equally great hair. He gets her back on course, and it's getting pretty steamy for a meet cute, when Anna realizes that she is about to be late for her sister, the Queen's coronation.
After a brief coronation ceremony, where Elsa almost ices over her Queen royalty things (what are those things called anyway) it's time to party. And who should show up at the ready? Prince Hans of course. He's all about dancing with Anna, then like in every other movie they break into song about finishing each others sandwiches. I wish I were kidding. Again it's all fun and games, until Prince Hans proposes to Anna, and she says yes, and then as they ask for the Queen's blessing, Elsa says no. Because Elsa knows getting engaged on a first date is bat shit crazy. Even in a Disney movie about a Queen who can shoot ice and snow out of her palms like Spiderman.
Upset Anna confronts Elsa in front of everyone shouting about their childhood and Elsa's icy demeanor (because she doesn't remember a thing), and soon Elsa can't control her anger or her ice. Elsa shoots ice and icicles out of her palms much to the dismay and fear of her guests. She runs out the door in embarrassment and fear telling Anna to leave her alone. Arandelle we have a problem, the Queen has left the building. Oh, and she has also has cursed you with an eternal winter. Your welcome.
As Anna is now the reining Queen she leaves Arandelle to Prince Hans. Of course she does, because she's gonna marry the guy, and he seems so trust worthy right?
This is the premise of Frozen. I won't recap the entire movie, because after this it's not that important. Sure Anna meets Kristoff and his sturdy reindeer Sven, together they meet Olaf, her sisters creation, and there are battles, and more arguments between sisters. Pretty normal and expected fare from a Disney movie. There is a point where Elsa again injures poor Anna with her icy magic palms, and Kristoff takes her to the trolls again, and for some reason none of the trolls remember Anna from her childhood. The head troll tells Kristoff that the only cure is an act of true love. Which is immediately translated into a true loves kiss. Of course. So back on the trail they go to Arandelle to find Prince Hans to kiss poor Anna, since he's her true love and only a true loves kiss will do.
Well guess what Disney lovers? Prince Hans is an asshole. He's a lying, cheating bastard in the worst sense of the word. It's all an act. He's like 13th in line for the throne back in his neck of the woods, and the best way to be a King is to let Anna die. You know gullible, naive, locked in a castle for all of adolescence Anna. Poor Anna. Now she is going to die, the eternal winter will never thaw, and her magical snow palmed sissy is trying to break out of Prince Hans prison. Awesome. No really, hear me out, this is awesome. Why not start lifting the "Disney wool" over my daughters eyes now? Someday she's going to meet a Prince Hans, and he will break her heart. This is an excellent lesson in love. One, don't get engaged on the first date, and two, just because he's handsome on the outside doesn't mean he has a nice heart on the inside. Score one for Disney for finally exposing the truth about bad boys.
Then something remarkable happens. Just as you are cheering for a True Love's kiss, even I want it to happen so Anna can live, SPOILER ALERT, that is not what saves the day. Anna, sacrifices her life, and her chance at a kiss from Kristoff, to save her sister Elsa's life. Even though her and Elsa were separated, and their relationship tarnished by the secret of Elsa's powers. Anna loves her sister, and by sacrificing herself that is the ultimate act in true love. Yes, Disney. So much yes. Even I teared up. First of all I have daughters. And they fight to the death, they scream and argue, and yet at the end of the day, they love each other. This is a great movie for sisters. Second of all, Disney just proved to any little princess watching that they do not need a prince to have true love. They don't need a prince to save the day. They don't need a prince, but they can have one if they want one. And if they want a prince they no longer have to eat poisonous apples, touch random spinning wheels, or give up their voice for the shot a true love. True love can be found by being brave and strong and having the confidence to say, I will save the day myself. Way to go Anna.
Frozen is now in my top 5 Disney movies. Because it's all about girl power. It's about sister love and family, and OK, it's got a really cute snowman named Olaf. But the real reason it's one of my new favorites...
It's the ultimate example of sisters before misters.