As I may have mentioned, we saw Frozen over Thanksgiving weekend.
Before that Friday, the fact that there was a new Disney was barely on my radar, since we don't watch normal TV where such a thing would be being rammed down the throats of my suggestible little sponges in constant ads and trailers and merchandising.
However, since Mabel's dental appointment was followed by a trip to the princess aisle of Target, it didn't escape our notice that there were two new dolls on the shelves - and as a result all the old ones were highly discounted, so she got a toddler Ariel for a tenner and that was lovely. But we did, therefore, know that there was a new movie with two princesses.
As a result of this, of course, Dash was reluctant, because he has lately come down hard on the anti-princess side of things. (He has also turned against the Ponies. Mabel is very sad about this, but he is unrepentant.) We basically had to force him out of the house, and even then he sat grumpily for the first forty minutes or so and was only retained in his seat by the addition of an iPod on which to play Angry Birds (silently). It was worth it though, because at the first tense part, instead of being scared like Dash of Old, he was drawn in and started to love it. Boys grow up in the weirdest ways.
I dunno, maybe it's been an awfully long time since I saw an animated movie in the cinema, but I was totally blown away. I mean, I've watched Tangled plenty of times, and in earlier years The Little Mermaid and Cars were pretty much on constant repeat in our house from time to time, and we've had a lot of The Emperor's New Groove (unsung BRILLIANT movie, by the way), but the big screen just does something the little one can't. I'd forgotten, or maybe I'd never discovered before, what a full-body experience it is when you sit there and let the whole thing wash over you, even as you cringe because it's too loud for tragically old you and the five-year-old beside you. And we didn't even see it in 3-D. (To be honest, I'm pretty sure I can't handle 3-D.)
In traditional Disney/Pixar style (I'm thinking mostly of the beginning of Up, here) the start of the movie tugged at my heartstrings almost unbearably, as the backstory was laid out and we were shown how and why things panned out the way they did when the real action got going. Maybe I was premenstrual/menstrual/postmenstrual/female/human, but I admit I was already swallowing hard and needing a tissue. I talked to Mabel about that part today and she said she didn't find it emotional at all, but I think she just likes to contradict me. Heartless wench.
We didn't think the songs were as good as the ones from Tangled, but ever since, we've been humming them and finding them on YouTube and now they're all stuck fast in all our heads; and probably if and when that one song wins the Oscar, even though had I not seen the film I'd be thinking it was just another obvious sappy Disney number, I'll be delighted because damn it's just so huge and swirling and wonderful and in my head it's totally swept up with the images and emotions in that part of the movie and it's downright cathartic, so it is.
Oh dear, that was all one sentence.
Yes, the princesses are still Disney princesses, and along with their lovely hair and their impossibly big eyes, they have waists that are about 50% tinier than necessary and, you know, Disney, you could have not bought into the Barbification of imaginary women, but apparently you decided to, which irks me. And because it's conveniently set in some Nordic-type land, there are no people of colour and the princesses are blonde and strawberry blonde respectively; but I suppose it has to be set somewhere, and Hans Christian Anderson does set a precedent.
In summation, though, you should go to Frozen because it's really great. It's funny and exciting and happy and sad and thrilling and it even has a good message about not hiding your true self, and the true love's kiss is not what you expected.
Your kids will probably like it too, but bring an iPod just in case.