Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Review: Tangled

If you're anything like me you've already read way too many reviews of this movie. Despite the fact that I avoid reviews before I watch a film at all costs this was one case where I simply couldn't get away from them. I kept trying to get the movie from the library, but first other people had it, and then I was busy, and then it mysteriously disappeared... well, two days ago I got to watch it with my cousins.

Firstly, as a general rule I do not like Disney Princess Films. The Little Mermaid was a disgrace to the fairy tale community. We're not even going to talk about the Princess and the Frog. The only similarity between Aladdin and the Arabian Nights was the name of the prince. So when I saw they were making Tangled I couldn't have been less interested.

The main plot of Rapunzel is as follows: An evil witch steals a child, and locks her in the tower. The only way up is by climbing the girl's hair. A handsome prince hears her singing, climbs up into her tower, and they fall in love. The witch finds out, cuts off Rapunzel's hair, blinds the prince, and throws them both out. After considerable trouble the two are reunited, Rapunzel's tears heal the prince's sight, and they both live happily ever after.

Tangled has all the elements that require it to be recognizable as a Rapunzel story. An evil witch, a girl in a tower, the longest hair in the world, and a magical healing from tears. But since the original Rapunzel story doesn't have a whole lot of plot (the girl sits around in the tower weaving a rope ladder) they added to it considerably. But unlike with Little Mermaid, they added to it in a good way. I, the fairy tale purist, loved it. Granted, it was still obviously Disney, but it was good in spite of that.

Flynn is very lovable. Rapunzel is adorable. Maximus is flat out hilarious. Stupid, totally unbelievable, but all the more hilarious for it. Every disney film has it's talking animal sidekicks, and I think part of what endeared this one to me is that the animal sidekick's didn't talk. They just had a lot of personality.

Of course, I can't write a Tangled review without adressing the issues brought up by all the critics...


"This is just a part of growing up. A little adventure, a little rebellion...that's good. Healthy, even." - Flynn Rider

Well, the first thing I'd like to point out is that Rapunzel isn't rebelling against her mother. She's rebelling against an evil witch.  You're supposed to rebel against them. But that aside, the basic principle he's advocating still needs addressing. I had one friend tell me that quote was the only part in the movie she really didn't like, and I agree. If I'd been writing the script I would definitely have put it differently. However... Flynn is telling the truth. Children do need to grow up. And if their parents don't let them grow up (as Mother Goethel did) then rebellion is the natural and, dare I say, healthy result. I'm not going to get into the whole question of kids who's parents won't let them grow up, so I'm simply going to refer you to a simply spectacular series on the subject by Micahel Pearl: Jumping Ship.


"When will my life begin?" - Rapunzel

Well, you know, she asks a very good question. She's a girl in a tower with an evil witch who has never seen another human being. Talk about having no purpose in life. Another thing pointed out by a reviewer is that Rapunzel takes the lead, rescuing Flynn from all kinds of dangerous situation. However, Flynn wouldn't have been in those situations if not for her; she simply turned out to be an asset rather than a liability. She's just a girl who knows how to take care of herself, which is admirable. She fights with a frying pan. What could be more feminine than that?


It's a Disney Princess Movie. 'nuff said.

Possibly the first Disney animation I've ever seen that I actually liked. (Disclaimer: I haven't seen very many, their reputation scares me away.) The music was breathtaking, the character lovable, it was hilarious, dramatic, and tragic. It was more or less true to the story, which is sure to win points with me if nothing else does. The ending was brilliant. And I finally got it from the library so I'll be watching it with all the small ones in a few days.


  1. Awesome review! I've heard so many reviews on this movie, and now this one... I guess I should probably see it. :D

  2. We watched this movie too, and honestly... my thoughts are about exactly the same. :D I kind of went into it a little sceptically (which is kind of my normal attitude towards such movies. :P), but ended up really, really enjoying it. :) As usual, it wasn't perfect. Obviously. It's made by humans. :P But over all, it had a lot of good in it, and I'd watch it again.