Today I took Isabelle for her very first trip to the cinema to see Disney's latest film, The Princess and The Frog, so I thought I'd do a review for anyone thinking about going to see it.
I was a bit apprehensive about taking Isabelle with her only being 4 and a half, but she did pretty well. She got a bit antsy half way through but then settled down again. She thoroughly enjoyed the film and I've had to print out pictures for her to stick on her bedroom wall and some others to colour in. She particularly likes Prince Naveen as the Frog. Good old Orange Wednesday's meant that I only had to pay for my ticket because if you text FILM to 241 if you're an orange customer it's 2 for the price of 1 cinema tickets every Wednesday. Both seats only cost me £5.60!
If you don't want to know the plot, please don't read on, it will spoil it for you.
The story centers on Tiana, a 19-year-old girl in 1920s New Orleans who encounters a talking frog. In reality, the frog is the semi-egotistical Prince Naveen, who has been, well...turned into a frog by Dr. Facilier, an evil voodoo peddler. When she agrees to kiss him, the result is that she becomes a frog too, and from here they embark on a journey across the lush Louisiana landscape to seek out the voodoo priestess Mama Odie, the only one who can help them. Along the way they meet up with Louis, an alligator jazz enthusiast, and Ray the Cajun firefly.
As always with Disney films, the animation is wonderful. The characters are great and you like them immediately, although I'm still scratching my head as to why one of the main characters is a jazz trumpet playing alligator. The music, again, is wonderful, with plenty of jazz thrown in due to the setting being New Orleans.
It is a typical boy meets girl, meet adversity, win the day in the end and live happily ever after Disney Fairytale, but hey, what's wrong with living in fantasy land for an hour and a half (97 minutes to be precise)?
There weren't any real stand out songs in the film like there was in The Lion King (Hakuna Matata) but that's not to say they aren't good.
The baddie was a Black Magic Voodoo expert and Isabelle wasn't too keen on his team of voodoo dolls and shadow monsters, but she accepted them as being part of the film. In all fairness, the voodoo dolls were very colourful and looked like a bit like clowns, so I guess only adults would get the voodoo connection. I just hope that the shadow monsters don't come back to haunt her tonight.
There wasn't as much humour in it as there was in The Lion King or Pixar's Toy Story, where they aim a lot of the humour at the adults that wash straight over the kids' heads, it was more your typical Cinderella, Little Mermaid production with humerous parts in it and it did have Isabelle laughing out loud several times. I'm sure that this is going to be another of Isabelle's favourites when it comes out on DVD.
It is a very likeable film with lovely characters in. I love Mad Mama Odie, the blind voodoo witch who reminds me of The Oracle in The Matrix, and when the frog pair ask her what they have to do to turn back into humans, she gives them a cryptic answer.
I asked Isabelle her favourite part and she said... the end bit.. I won't give it away though ;)