Frozen: Chill Out (2013)

Posted: December 15, 2013 in Adventure, Animated, Comedy
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frozen-poster-smallAs the daughters of the kingdom of Arendelle, Anna and Elsa were all about play until Elsa’s magic led to an accident and forced her to remain locked away from the rest of the people. Even Anna no longer got to see her sister. After their parents were gone and the daughters were of age, Elsa was slated to become the queen of the land. Still unable to control her emotions after the accident and unable to control her magic, Elsa gets angry at the announcement of Anna’s engagement after only one day of knowing Prince Hans and unleashes her ice magic on the land. Frightened and disoriented, Elsa runs into the mountains, leaving her sister to go chasing after her. Elsa magic freezes the kingdom under layers of snow and ice, for which Anna is unprepared. A chance meeting with an ice merchant named Christoph gives Anna the help she needs to find her sister and reverse the magic enchanting their land.

Starring: Kristen Bell (Anna), Idina Menzel (Elsa), Jonathan Groff (Christoph), Josh Gad (Olaf), Santino Fontana (Hans), Alan Tudyk (Duke), Ciaran Hinds (Pabbie/Grandpa), Chris Williams (Oaken)

The voice acting in this film (along with the animation and musical score) help to bring out the true essence of the characters and engage the viewer. Bell provided a strong sense of enthusiasm and humor to her character’s free spirit-like nature. Menzel, on the other hand, had more of a teenage angst mixed with a strong sense of burden. The balance between the actresses playing the two sisters made for a strong entertainment value. Gad, who played the snowman sidekick, was able to interject with a series of comedic moments without going over the top. For Groff and Fontana, their development throughout the film takes opposite turns but contributes well to the twists in the storyline.

elsa-pose anna-longing elsa-magic

With a combined resume including Wreck-It RalphTarzan, and Surf’s Up, Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck hit a chord with a story about love, loss, power, and fear. While Anna and Elsa were carefree when they were children, the accident with Elsa’s ice powers left the king and queen no choice but to have Anna’s memory changed and remove contact for Elsa to protect the people around her. The challenges of their isolation affected them in profoundly different ways. For Anna, her optimism prevented her from letting the loneliness take her energy. For Elsa, she struggled to control her powers and lived in a constant state of fear and avoidance. She eventually had to break out of the isolation but was completely unready for what consequences would follow her for her inability to control her emotions.

olaf-field concept-2 kristoff-sven-riding

At the point where the two male leads were introduced, a new challenge arose. Hans was presented to be just what Anna was looking for, between his charm and common interests. It was not until later in the story that he finally revealed that he has ulterior motives. Christoph ended up being a little more complicated. Starting off as a somewhat avoidant character, his only friend that he seemed to show interest and affection toward was his reindeer Sven. He quickly appeared to reveal himself to be caring but did not show his growing affection toward Anna until forced into thinking about it. Their adventure through the mountains delayed the film from needing to focus on their budding romance. Instead, the love between sisters turned out to be the important factor that brought the story to its ultimate conclusion.

With some similar feelings as in Tangled, this film impressed with its emotions, comedy, and unpredictable storyline.

Dan’s Rating: 4.0/5

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