“Frozen 2” leaves audiences feeling warmer than ever this December

Faced with the challenge of proving itself better than the powerhouse that was the original, “Frozen 2” will not leave audiences disappointed. Released six years after the original, “Frozen 2” is set three years from when “Frozen” ended. The film focuses on exploring both the future of the royal sisters, Elsa and Anna, while dealing with a nefarious history that threatens to destroy Arendelle. 

Although “Frozen” ended on a happy note with Elsa (Idina Menzel) taking the throne after accepting her magic and her younger sister Anna (Kristen Bell) finding a handsome fellow who isn’t plotting world domination, the sequel brews up new dilemmas for the ice queen and the happy couple. Facing these troubles comes with a healthy dose of original songs, dance sequences and humorous scenes sure to have kids — and adults — rolling in their seats.

While Anna and Elsa spent the majority of their time in “Frozen” trying to find themselves — and ultimately saving each other — the sisters develop a deeper bond over the course of “Frozen 2” as they struggle to deal with a dark family past. Disney includes a not-so-subtle message regarding the treatment of indigenous peoples as the film delves into a curse laid over stolen land. The whole gang traverses snowy terrain and overcomes a magical barrier in an attempt to discover the truth about what happened between the magical Northuldrans and the townspeople.

Lightening the gravity of the mission, more characters find themselves testing the limits of their vocal chords. Olaf (Josh Gad) engages in a hilarious recap of the previous movie in a single burst of energy, while Kristoff (Jonathon Groff) belts out a cheesy boy band narrative about his situation with the help of — not surprisingly — a harmonious reindeer chorus. Elsa, as predicted, steals the show with another solo, “Into the Unknown,” that does not quite capture the sense of strong, independent feminism to the extent of “Let It Go,” but leaves audiences and their children with the same message, catchy tune and unattainable high notes that will have voices cracking in households for months to come. Part of the song’s charm comes from an echoing format in which a flowing, otherworldly voice responds to the soulful calls of Elsa, whose perpetual search for herself and place in the world leave her unafraid to venture into the unknown.

Though the film’s plot felt slightly worn out and convoluted, “Frozen 2” exceeded all expectations in terms of animation. A particularly memorable moment transpires when the reservoir breaks, sending an exquisitely textured wave, in a myriad of turquoise hues, rolling toward Arendelle. 

Delving into the backstories of minor characters, the film does not stray from focusing on the sibling power duo of Anna and Elsa. Though the film leaves fans wondering if Elsa would ever be revealed as a lesbian icon in the absence of a clear male partner, it certainly empowers her role as woman strong enough to rule alone. A happy ending is all but required by the Disney princess industry, and “Frozen 2” does not fail to find — yet again — a happy ever after.

By Milo Santiago, Staff writer
Photo courtesy of E!News