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People say it's something different, but I think it's still a typical Disney.
Someone mentioned that Beck shouldn't do more work "for the sake of every Disney fan." This person does NOT speak for every Disney fan. Let it Go has become one of my absolute favorite Disney songs. Generally, the score was below the typical Disney standard, but that one song went a long way in compensating for it.
In regards to the "African" music - there is no African music. The weird sounding thing in the beginning and the end is basically Saami yoiking (with a backup choir based on a hymn), which is a Norwegian cultural thing. I know this because I am Norwegian. For a film based on a Scandinavian fairy tale, set in a Scandinavian environment, this music couldn't have been more fitting.
To me, it's clear that Disney put an unexpected amount of research into this, and I was generally impressed by all the details in regards to Norwegian culture and mythology; everything from trolls, to Kristoff's clothes, to the mention of "gløgg" and "lutefisk" (a horrible dish which you should never ever taste, btw) and the use of the Norwegian Fjord Horse. I went into the cinema expecting to be disappointed, but I left the cinema smiling, surprisingly pleased and content.
And the animation? Stunningly beautiful. They captured the winter landscape perfectly. I already know I'm gonna watch this film several times.
Edit: Since then, I've watched it more than twice. After my second viewing I actually liked it even better, noticing more brilliant details and, once I'd gotten more used to it, appreciated the music more. I think it's a good quality that a film gets better after multiple viewings, instead of just boring. Brava, Disney. Brava.
I not only loved this movie, I had a real catharsis in watching it. I had no idea what the storyline was until minutes before walking into the theater. When I realized it was about sisters and the bonds they share, I almost didn't go in. I have sisters who have also, through no fault of their own, shut me out of their lives emotionally. This movie made me cry, lifted my heart, gave me hope for the future and generally gave me the hope that life does and will get better, even if it isn't perfect. I may have read a lot of things into this movie but isn't that what a good movie is supposed to do? Hit you where you live and make you think and feel? On a practical level, the animation was exceptional. I saw the 3-D version and the characters just seemed to pop off the screen. (Even more exciting, to me, was the short shown just before the movie with Mickey Mouse and gang literally jumping out of a black and white "Steamboat Willie" cartoon and becoming colorized in the best 3-D animation I have ever seen in my life! I thought Goofy was going to fall into my lap! I could feel the sweat jump off of Mickey's brow onto my face! With that start, I was expecting all kinds of greatness from Disney and they certainly didn't disappoint.) Anyone worried about the music...well, just concentrate on that upbeat, positive song Elsa sang when she finally realizes her "curse" is really empowering... Can't get more positive than that! Thank you, Walt, wherever you are.
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In 5 official lists
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This movie ranks #19 in Box Office Mojo's All Time Worldwide Box Office
This movie ranks #24 in BFI's 100 Animated Feature Films
This movie ranks #99 in Emma Beare's 501 Must-See Movies
This movie ranks #116 in Box Office Mojo's All Time Adjusted Box Office
This movie ranks #671 in TSPDT's 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films