And now for what I really think –
There is SO so much I love about this movie, I don’t know how I can NOT write a novel. I’ll try to keep this under, say, 30 pages.
So here are the main themes I was really excited about –
1. It’s not good to live in isolation. Unless you voluntarily took a vow to go be a cloistered religious. But neither Anna nor Elsa had that choice.
2. It’s also not good to recklessly throw yourself into life without caution or self-discipline. Anna was easily sucked into predator Hans’s web because she failed to exercise caution. And Elsa’s “letting it go” destructively unleashed winter.
3. Embrace life (keep the castle gates open), but channel your energies appropriately (focusing on love instead of fear), and don’t jump into a serious relationship too quickly.
And then there’s Olaf.
Memo to George Lucas:
This is how you do a comic relief character.
I was afraid of that.
Oh well. I tried.
Moving on –
Overall, there are so many positive messages that I cannot overemphasize how excited I am that this movie’s popularity has caught on like wildfire.
I only have two concerns: first, Anna spends the movie throwing emotional energy into a void. Sure, as the audience, we see that Elsa is conflicted, but Anna doesn’t see that until adulthood, and even then I’m not sure how clear it would be from Anna’s perspective. This message is one of those things that could be either good or bad –
1) someone in a good, healthy relationship receives a message to always keep putting effort into their relationship, even if the other person doesn’t always reciprocate right away. When two people mutually give to each other, it’s a beautiful thing.
2) someone in an abusive, unhealthy relationship receives a message to keep on giving even when the other person continually shuts them out. The happy ending is just around the corner, right? Right?
In real life, if a person shuts you out the way Elsa did to Anna, let them go. It’s the only way to protect yourself mentally and emotionally.
My second concern is that “love means putting someone else’s needs before your own.” It does. Absolutely. But like Anna’s character, this message can be either good or bad in much the same way; it’s either encouraging and affirming the type of relationship that makes life worth living or it’s providing fertile ground for abuse.
So I guess when I circle back around, I wish there was a way for more people to be able to recognize abusive situations and get out before they get too far in. I also wish we lived in a world where I didn’t have to be on the lookout for unintentional encouragement of abusive relationship dynamics in popular media. If there were more knowledge and awareness of good vs. bad relationship dynamics in the culture at large, my concerns would basically go away.
I give this movie 7 stars out of 5. Can I even do that? Sure I can! It’s my blog – I can do whatever I want!
Seriously, though – see this movie if you haven’t already. If you need to, borrow someone’s kids (in a completely non-creepy way, of course) so you have an excuse to watch it.