Frozen 2 a well-crafted next chapter for franchise

Courtesy of The Walt Disney Company Anna and Olaf return, portrayed by Kristen Bell and Josh Gadd respectively.

Courtesy of The Walt Disney Company | Anna and Olaf return, portrayed by Kristen Bell and Josh Gadd respectively.

Katie SeCaur | Staff Writer

12/05/19

On Nov. 22, Disney’s much anticipated Frozen 2, hit the silver screen in theaters worldwide, sending many parents and their little ones to the theater to see the latest adventure of Anna and Elsa. The early box office receipts have been staggering, with a global box office take of $742 million in the film’s first two weeks of release, including a record-setting $125 million holiday weekend. It seems likely that the sequel will bypass the original’s box office take of about $1.275 billion. While not necessarily living up to what came from the original, I do believe that this film lives up to the hype the trailers caused.

Frozen was released in 2013 and took the world by storm with its soundtrack, especially the smash hit “Let It Go,” contributing to its success. The movie introduced us to princesses Anna and Elsa, their soon-to-be dearly departed parents, along with a number of other citizens of Arendelle and several visiting dignitaries. For Frozen 2, all the primary roles were reprised by the original cast: Kristen Bell as Princess Anna, Tony-award winning Broadway actress Idina Menzel as the ice queen Elsa, Josh Gad as the loveable Olaf, and Jonathan Goff as Kristoff.

Frozen 2 begins with some cute interactions between the young princesses and their parents. It introduces the backstory that points the direction of the film, including an enchanted forest and elemental spirits. It then picks up with Elsa as the reigning Queen of Arendelle, and Kristoff and Anna beginning their happily ever after.  But trouble arises and our heroes take off on their daring adventure. Where Frozen was more of a hero vehicle for Anna, both Anna and Elsa exhibit their heroic qualities in the sequel.

As with most recently released animated movies from the house of mouse, this is a musical. This time around though, all four major characters got a song of their own.  These vary from the peppy opening number “Some Things Never Change,” to Anna’s solemn “The Next Right Thing,” and Kristof’s “Lost in the Woods” which is reminiscent of boy band love songs. Olaf’s song, “When I am Older,” is the only number that really doesn’t match the standards of the original, and felt like it was shoved in so that there was something similar to “In Summer” for Josh Gad to sing.

We all remember the phenomenon that was “Let it Go” from the original — now there are two powerful ballads to take the spot of annoying earworm. “Show Yourself,” and more notably “Into the Unknown,” will undoubtedly have little kids singing them on a near-constant loop. The songs are great, but if you have little siblings, be prepared to get tired of them fast.

As a solo film, Frozen 2 can definitely stand on its own, and as a sequel, it moves the stories of Anna and Elsa along and it has merit in the Disney canon. The film does its job to entertain, but it was still obvious that the main goal was to capitalize on the popularity of the franchise and to reignite the sale of Frozen princess dresses and stuffed animals of Olaf and Sven, along with the incredibly cute fire spirit, Bruni.

All in all, Frozen 2 is a beautiful film with a great cast and score.  It is worth spending the money to see it in theaters but with no great rush. Eventually, it will make its way to Disney+, so in the end, does it matter when you are spending the money to see it? Do stick around for the end credits scene, though.

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