In part because of the controversy surrounding the physical similarities between the protagonists, people have been drawing a lot of comparisons between Frozen and Tangled. Which one holds up? Let’s go through, piece by piece:
Even though they all look near-identical (why’d you have to do that, Disney?), Rapunzel, Elsa, and Anna are all admirable in different ways – we have Anna, champion of the awkward and earnest (“You’re gorgeous – wait, what?” might have been my favorite line in the whole movie), we have Rapunzel, queen of the cast-iron skillet, and finally, Elsa the Ultra-Badass Tortured Soul.
The winner: Frozen – because even without an assist from Anna, Elsa trumps Rapunzel, hands-down.
Frozen 1, Tangled 0
Reformed bad boy Flynn Rider Eugene? Or anti-social, raised by trolls Kristoff? Both offer lots of fun contrarian banter with their respective heroines – hmm, it’s a tough one. Kristoff was pretty excellent, but in the end, “The Smolder” is hard to beat. Also, where was the love duet between Anna and Kristoff?? “I See The Light” tips the balance in Flynn’s favor.
Frozen 1, Tangled 1
Pascal vs. Olaf? Though I giggled at Olaf’s “In Summer,” I generally found him pretty darn obnoxious: Pascal wins, mainly by volition of the fact that he can’t talk. Also, he’s an iguana in Germany.
Frozen 1, Tangled 2
It’s hard to say what Tangled’s most popular song was – the catchy “When Will My Life Begin,” and the starry-eyed romantic “I See The Light” are both contenders. In Frozen, there’s absolutely no question what the best song is (hint: it has millions upon millions of hits on YouTube, and was recently nominated for a Golden Globe) – Idina Menzel and Disney musicals might just be a match made in heaven.
I think I have to give this one to Frozen, seeing as I’ve had “Let It Go” playing on an endless loop since I saw the film.
Frozen 2, Tangled 2
The Near-Death Experience
In Tangled, Flynn dies from a wound sustained from the evil Mother Gothel. It looks like all is lost, until a single tear from Rapunzel (the last remnant of her magic hair) brings him back to life. In Frozen, it’s Anna who dies. Her frozen heart (curable only by an act of true love) causes her whole body to turn to ice – but not before she saves her sister’s life. Anna thought it was a kiss from Prince Hans (and later Kristoff) that would thaw her frozen heart, but it turns out sisterly love works just as well.
So who wins? I have to say Frozen. It was a nice subversion of the “True Love’s Kiss” trope that’s popped up in just about every Disney movie (Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Enchanted, and The Princess and the Frog, to name a few).
Frozen 3, Tangled 2
Go see it.