10 February, 2010

Film Review #2 The Princess and the Frog


"Walt Disney Animation Studios presents the musical THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG, an animated comedy set in the great city of New Orleans. From the creators of “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin” comes a modern twist on a classic tale, featuring a beautiful girl named Tiana (ANIKA NONI ROSE), a frog prince who desperately wants to be human again, and a fateful kiss that leads them both on a hilarious adventure through the mystical bayous of Louisiana.

THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG marks the return to hand-drawn animation from the revered team of John Musker and Ron Clements, with music by Oscar®-winning composer Randy Newman."
Plot taken from movieweb.com

After our Valentines day plans were ruined, the boy promised to take me to see The Princess and the Frog for orange wednesday at our local cinema. We're really skint at the moment anyway so the fact not only are tickets two for one and the fact I get discount made it really worth the trip, even in the snow. Part of me was really excited about going, as I have previously mentioned I am a total sucker for Disney, inparticular the Princesses so the idea of a new princess really appealed to me., it has been a while. On the other hand I was really quite nervous, Disney's last few attempts to bring back good ol' 2D animation had been a disaster. All those remakes, Home on the Range, even Lilo and Stitch makes me cringe! But in my opinion the worrying was actually for nothing. I'm going to say now, even with all it's faults and it's lacking compared to some of Disney's classics, I did love The Princess and the Frog.

The story was solid and put and excellent spin on the classic Princess kisses frog story. It was also very touching especially in the first few scenes, for some reason Disney love to kill off a parent (although it's in the style of old Disney and not shown on screen, only mentioned by the characters). I am a huge fan of jazz music so having the whole film based in New Orleans at the height of the jazz era really appealed to me. The characters were on the whole, enjoyable to watch with a few exceptions, the first being Charlotte who just grated on me until the end when she had her redemption. I loved Tiana, I really hope she joins the ranks of the past Princesses. She was feisty and her values were a great message. I sort of wish more of the other Disney princesses believed in dreams come true if you work a little, instead my whole head is messed up waiting on my happy ending! Anyway, the prince however didn't really do much for me. The animal characters were funny and lovable even if they were carbon copies of past animal disney characters. I especially loved Ray and his love for Evangeline. Now onto the villain, Dr Facillier or the Shadow Man, in my personal opinion he was fab and in old disney style quite creepy. I read somewhere that he was described as the love child of Captain Hook and Cruella De Ville and I totally see that. However, for it being a childrens film (not that Disney has ever been ONLY fluffy bunnies) the subject of Voodoo was a little bit close to the bone and even slightly hard to explain to younger children (I heard a little girl in from asking her mother to explain it and failing), especially as Dr Facillier has a voodoo doll. The soundtrack was superb, however I wouldn't think any of the songs we that memorable, the only one I remember is Almost There, the rest just fade into the soundtrack of the film which is a little disappointing.

I always judge a Disney film on it's ability to make me well up, if it does, it's a good one. I can happily note that The Princess and the Frog did have me choked up and it does have a good ending that keeps me believing in happily ever after for everyone and as sad as it is, that is why I enjoy Disney movies. They make you believe in love and happiness even when everything seems hopeless. This is also the first Disney film that wasn't pixar that the other half thoroughly enjoyed, that counts for something. While watching it reminded me a lot of Don Bluth's Anastasia, even the songs and especially the villain. I will be buying this on dvd to add to my collection, however I won't be paying to see it again at the cinema.

Best Moment: When Tiana finally gives in to her heart and realises what she's wanted all along.
Best Line: "She is my Evangeline"
Would Recommend For: Children (although I'd say 7+ Voodoo is pretty deep stuff), Disney Lovers who still have the faith, Out With The Girls
Rating: 7/10
(only because in comparison to some of the classics, it still doesn't measure up, more on par with Mulan and Oliver and Company opposed to The Little Mermaid)

3 comments:

  1. I gave it 7 out of 10 too!

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  2. I loved this film but it was really scary in parts! I would've been terrified as a kid and some children in the cinema started crying at the voodoo part. You're right - not quite as wonderful as Little Mermaid (my all time favourite) but still very good!

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  3. i agree it wasn't as good as beauty in the beast but it was really cute. i really liked it. :)

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