13 February 2010

Don’t call it a Disney comeback...

The Princess and the Frog - Ron Clements and John Musker

With the merge of Disney and Pixar, John Lasseter, the head of Pixar stood firmly with the belief that Disney can once again make fairy tales classics that will stay with audiences forever. To incorporate the success and the hard-working mentality of Pixar into Disney is hard work, and the changes won’t happen overnight, especially in the films Disney release. The last 2D picture Disney produced was Home on the Range, an awful film that most people won’t remember as it was drowned out by Pixar. The last film Disney made that was successful in its animation department, to a certain degree, is Lilo and Stitch, which too many people has its up and downs. Now it’s been nearly seven years since the last one, does The Princess and the Frog do justice for Disney, raise up from the ashes and show the Pixar flair with the classic style of the likes of Aladdin, The Lion King or Hercules or does it show that Lasseter was wrong to buy the company and that Disney should just stick to producing teen dramas or musicals like High School Musical and Hannah Montana?

In basic terms, The Princess and the Frog is delightful. It’s got heart, it’s certainly got soul and it’s genuinely funny in parts. Not laugh at loud like Wall E or Toy Story, but it works. It’s great to see the style back, it’s great to reminiscence about the films i saw when i was younger, having a fascination with Disney films and watching them over and over again. They were a staple for a kids growing up. Giving them morals and sometimes dreams, i don’t think there is anyone out there who didn’t want to be a princess or a prince, or be a lion or be any one of the Disney characters. Watching the film, you get strong hints of Corpse Bride, the Tim Burton film, along with hints of past Pixar films, the colours are magnificent here, and it defiantly looks better than any Disney film from the last decade. Capturing New Orleans in the film, its picture perfect, it really gives the city a heart and soul and includes music that fits together with the picture.

The film follows Tiana, a waitress who dreams of opening her own restaurant. She one day accidently kisses a prince, Prince Naveen or thinks Tiana is a princess and which will break the spell of him being a frog. Tiani suddenly turns into a frog, and both Tiana and the Prince must find a way to break the spell and defeat the evil voodoo master who put them under it. Along the way they meet funny and charming characters like the trumpet playing crocodile. It’s a simple premise for children, but adults can defiantly get into it and dig the story. It’s a film i wasn’t expecting much from, but it does the job it’s set out to do. The story is a sad one, but it has the common, heroes and villains. It would be a great modern film to let your children see to let them learn lessons but at the same time, teenagers, adult and mature people will enjoy the soul and heart of the film.


Simon Childs

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