Monday, December 06, 2010


To be honest I caught this one with the family over Thanksgiving weekend but it's been so crazy the last week and a half that I haven't had time to put the thing up. So if you are a box office junky like myself you'd have noticed that Tangled actually beat the boy wizard this past weekend which is a pretty incredible feat for it's second weekend considering how dominant Harry Potter has been around this time of year. Also it's pretty rare for a film to take the top billing in the second week of it's release. But I think the good buzz and non-stop marketing probably helped a lot. This is another revamp of sorts for the Disney animation brand. It's been DOA since the late 90's allowing CGI heavy Pixar to take the mantle and never look back. They had a middling hit with the Princess and the Frog but due to Market research they discovered that little boys are not interested in seeing an animated movie with a chicks name in the title or the word Princess. Apparently this kind of thing affected the bottom line for Princess and the Frog so badly that for this film instead of calling it the girl friendly yet boy averting Rapunzel, they opted for Tangled instead. They also added a dashing Han Solo like character to action the piece up. I read about all of these changes and I was a little annoyed. When I was a kid, boy or girl,  you go and see Snow White, Cinderella, etc. they aren't chick flicks, I mean there is some mushy stuff but that Dragon in Sleeping Beauty was wicked scary. I never, even as a kid, cared about the titles as long as the movie was good. I'm not sure what is being taught today with these young boys that they should feel uncomfortable if they see a movie with the words Princess in it. Anyway, I digress, the marketing strategy seems to be a success based on the box office. But thankfully having seen the movie there is so much more than just actioning up the thing for my little boy. It's got adventure, a nice love story and some great chemistry, all you need for a fun Disney animated film.
Flynn Rider (voice by Zachary Levi) is a dashing thief who is a little too into himself, but he meets his match with the lonely girl in the tower Rapunzel (voice by Mandy Moore). Rapunzel was kidnapped as a child because of her magic locks and imprisoned in the tower by a greedy woman (Donna Murphy) who claims to be her Mother. All Rider wants to do is get back the shiny crown he just stole all Rapunzel wants is to see the floating lights from the Kingdom. She hides Flynn's satchel of treasure in exchange for a day out of her prison so she can see the lights. Action and Adventure follows.
Overall I think the film was a success, our little guy seemed to enjoy it despite some slightly intense sadness in the beginning, he really got into the hijinks and music of the film. I noticed that my wife too seem to have some good vibes about it. Those Disney guys led by John Lassetter and Pixar have shaped the Mouse House forever in their image with sharp scripts and engaging characters with a hint of that old Disney magic with more than bearable songs from Oscar winner Alan Menken, who provided the special magic to the run of Disney animated hits in the 90's like the Little Mermaid and Aladdin. I know it sounds harsh when I say bearable, but I'm just not that into musicals at all. If I can shrug my shoulders and say, eh not so bad then I'm sure it's actually a masterpiece in the animated musical world. Anyway, the animation is, like always with Disney, superb and I really enjoyed the vocal characters, the chemistry was pretty good between Rapunzel and Flynn and I swear I thought I heard Zachary "Chuck" Levi singing a couple of songs. Yes there are certainly more songs then you would think if you just watch the trailer, and some of them can be a bit showtoony if you don't like that kind of thing. But the witty banter and slapstick will reel you back in, honest. And of course there is plenty of action for you young boys that are afraid there is too much chick stuff. So if your looking for something family friendly to take your little tyke too over the holiday season definitely take them to see Tangled, you've got something there for the whole family.
Grade 3 Buckets

No comments: