Ava is obsessed with “Frozen.” Even before she had seen the movie, she was very familiar with the story thanks to kids at her day care. The school’s Halloween party could have just been a “Batman & Elsa” party.
Every day she asks if she can listen to “Elsa songs” on my phone. My Spotify end of year statistics will be horrifying to look at, with several hundred plays of the soundtrack weighted against my own choices.
I think it’s a good movie, but there are two things that trouble me about it. One more seriously than the other. Spoilers follow, in case you haven’t seen it yet.
My main issue is with Prince Hans. Every time Ava listens to “Love is an Open Door” she excitedly says “Anna is going to marry Prince Hans!”
Then I have to say “Remember, Prince Hans is the bad guy.”
Sometimes she does remember, but other times she tries to argue that he’s not. She’s not yet four, so her confusion makes sense to me. While watching the movie for the first time, I thought he was a good guy too until his villainous turn.
I wasn’t used to such a subtle villain in a kids’ movie. I’m used to the villain being named something like “Scar,” which when combined with voice work by someone like Jeremy Irons lets you know right away he’s not deserving of a “World’s Best Uncle” mug. Disney’s bad guys are usually trying to skin dogs for coats or yelling to have someone beheaded. Subtlety isn’t usually their strong suit.
Initially I thought “Frozen” wouldn’t have a villain. It didn’t really need one; a sister’s quest to redeem her sister seemed like it would provided all the drama. There was the Duke of Weselton for a bit of sinister behavior, but other than that there was no obvious villain.
Even as Anna and Kristoff got a little flirty, I assumed he would eventually be paired up with Elsa. It all made sense, since Anna had met her perfect prince in Hans.
As a movie watcher, I love that I got tricked. As a father, I’m worried that my daughter did. That even after he was exposed, she still seems giddy at the thought of Anna marrying him. While I doubt a scheming prince will turn up some day, it has activated my fatherly fears.
So let’s got a little lighter: What was up with Kristoff? As the movie opens we seem him as a child, cutting ice with a community, a community that he presumably is a part of. It seems reasonable to think his mother and father were part of that group.
Cut to Kristoff as an adult, and he’s still in the iceman. Carrying on in his family’s business, right? Wrong, because we find out he was raised by trolls.
How did that happen? Wasn’t he part of that ice cutting village? How did he end up living with trolls, yet working his way back into the ice business?
I definitely think Elsa and Anna’s story is movie worthy, but Kristoff seems really short-changed in the origin department. It would be like if we got a random scene in an Indiana Jones movie hinting that he was raised by llamas.