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Friday
February 28th, 2020

frozen 2 spotlight page reviewElsa (voiced by Idina Menzel) discovers some new powers in this scene from the recently released “Frozen 2.” Courtesy photoELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times

 

The past couple weeks have been a little long for me with everything I’ve had to take care of, so this weekend I decided to take a couple hours away from my apartment and go to the movies, ultimately deciding to see “Frozen 2.” I’ve been a fan of the original since seeing it with my mom and younger sister shortly after it was released – the music was fun and catchy, the animation was stunning and the vocal performances were great. So when I heard the official confirmation that a sequel would happen, I was excited. 

The sequel takes place a few years after the events of the original and the story follows our favorite Arendelle residents Queen Elsa, her sister Princess Anna, and their friends Kristoff, Olaf the snowman and Sven the reindeer, who embark on a journey beyond their kingdom to discover the origin of Elsa's magical powers and the source of a mysterious voice who has been calling out to her. 

Much like the original, the animation in “Frozen 2” is absolutely stunning. The colors are extremely bright and vibrant, which is great since much of the film is set around the autumn season, and the scenes throughout the movie where Elsa is using her powers are gorgeously drawn and are total eye candy. Animation-wise, I would say my favorite parts of the movie were Elsa’s two big songs “Into the Unknown” and “Show Yourself,” because they are both just so well done and the level of skill it took to put together those particular scenes deserves recognition. The scenes that take place in the enchanted forest our heroes travel to are also very well drawn and just pop on screen. 

Also like the original, the vocal performances in the movie are also outstanding. Idina Menzel and Kristen Bell once again have great chemistry as Elsa and Anna, Jonathan Groff again puts forth a steady performance as Kristoff, and Josh Gad puts together another hilarious performance as Olaf. I actually feel like Gad was a particular standout with his performance and many lines of his dialogue elicited laughs from me and the rest of the theater. My favorite scene with Olaf is when he’s basically recounting the events of the first “Frozen” movie for the people they’ve just met in the enchanted forest – the way he told this story was reminiscent of how Scott’s friend Luis in the Marvel “Ant-Man” movies recounted stories, so I was nearly doubling over laughing during that part because the comedic timing was fantastic and also, it was a great way to recap everything in the span of less than five minutes if you happened to feel slightly lost. The only complaint I would have with this side of things is I feel Jonathan Groff should have been used some more, I felt he was slightly underutilized in the movie compared to the first one.

The movie’s music also yielded a few songs that will undoubtedly be earworms before too long, and my particular favorites in the movie were “Into the Unknown,” “Show Yourself” and “The Next Right Thing.” Menzel’s vocals for “Into the Unknown” and “Show Yourself” were absolutely amazing and it definitely allowed her to display exactly why she’s a Tony-winning singer and actress. “The Next Right Thing” was Bell’s big solo and her vocals were also outstanding because it showed how Anna, while in a vulnerable moment, she is still able to pull herself together and be strong for those she loves. I also like the song because it also makes Anna a more realistic character by showing her being scared and sad about her situation instead of being her eternal optimist self, so it was great seeing that extra dimension. Overall, however, I have to admit the movie’s music somewhat pales in comparison to the original. The songs are still cute and parents will probably listen to the soundtrack multiple times, but musically speaking, the songs from the first movie were stronger than in this one and had more oomph too them, so to speak. The only song I didn’t really care for during the movie was Kristoff’s solo “Lost in the Woods,” and it wasn’t so much a problem with the song itself, but rather the scene around it because the way they decided to have the scene play out, to me, was just very weird and I just ended up not being a fan.

Overall, I enjoyed the movie and was very pleased with my choice when I went to the theater Sunday, so I would give it an overall “B” grade. The animation and vocal performances from everyone are stunning and there are also a few songs that everyone will undoubtedly have stuck in their head for at least a little while. And I have a few predictions about this movie: (A) I foresee nominations come award season for the best animated feature category as well as the best original song category for either “Into the Unknown” or “Show Yourself, and (B) I actually predict those two songs, along with “The Next Right Thing.” will soon become very popular musical theater audition songs for several voice types. If you were a fan of the first “Frozen” movie, you will probably enjoy “Frozen 2.”

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