Revisiting ‘Tangled’

With many people in the United States in self-quarantine due to the outbreak of the coronavirus, streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+ are becoming several of the top sources of entertainment during this time. Recently, Disney+ added Onward and Frozen II to the platform earlier than originally planned to provide more content for those stuck at home. One such movie on Disney Plus that was available for everyone to watch is the 2010 animated film, Tangled. I have never seen the film before and I watched the film after Disney fans claimed the film predicted the coronavirus. After watching it, I can safely say it is one of the best animated films Disney has ever made.

A long time ago, a drop of sunlight fell on the Earth and created a flower that can heal injuries, illnesses and keep the user young. An old woman named Mother Gothel uses the flower to keep her young for hundreds of years. One day, in the nearby kingdom CORONA, the queen is pregnant and sick. The kingdom searches and finds the flower to save her and the child. Their child is born with magical blond hair and Gothel comes to steal her hair. Once cut off, the hair loses its power and Gothel decides to steal the child instead. After the child is stolen, the kingdom releases lights every night on her birthday hoping that it leads her home.

The child, Rapunzel, is quarantined in a tower for 18 years away in the kingdom of Corona and her hair becomes insanely long. Flynn Rider, a thief, is on the run and stumbles upon the tower. Rapunzel has seen the lights every night on her birthday and wants to know the source of them. So, she captures Rider and his satchel which contains an item that he stole from Corona. She will let him go and return him the satchel under the condition he takes her to the lights.

The film stars Mandy Moore as Rapunzel, Zachary Levi as Flynn Rider and Donna Murphy as Mother Gothel. Moore shines as Rapunzel, bringing a youthful and hopeful energy to her character. She portrays emotion through her voice well and that is on top of her great singing voice. Levi is terrific as Rider and was the perfect choice for the character. Shazam! allowed him to portray a fun and witty character and that is the case in this film as well. Murphy portrays the evil Mother Gothel perfectly as she does a fantastic job going back and forth between demented and sweet in an instant.

My favorite aspect of the film is the two comic relief characters Maximus, the palace horse and Pascal, Rapunzel’s pet chameleon. The animation perfectly plays up their reactions and emotions for the situation and the timing is wonderful. Maximus is a horse that acts a lot like a hound dog and every scene with him and Rider is hilarious. Pascal is adorable and him interacting with Rapunzel is  a treat to watch.

The animation in the film was great. The settings and landscapes all looked gorgeous. It took six years for Disney to produce this movie and it is clear how much effort was put into the animation as it was their first 3-D animated movie. The characters’ faces felt real and genuine and the action was very fluid. One great aspect was the film’s lighting. The film’s color contrast between light and dark colors was well done. The illumination of Rapunzel’s hair and the lanterns symbolized how she was the light the kingdom needed after a dark 18 years.

The music was well done and timely. One problem I have with movies such as Frozen is the music feels forced rather than a natural demonstration of the characters’ situations. This movie’s music is much more natural. The talent of the voice actors adds to the enjoyment of the musical scenes. The two that stand out are “Mother Knows Best,” a piece that shows just how much of a hold Gothel has on Rapunzel and “I’ve Got a Dream,” that shows how inspirational Rapunzel is and the necessity of her journey.

Tangled is a phenomenal film and easily one of Disney’s best. It is hilarious, inspirational and fun all at the same time. I am glad this film has gotten more attention and I hope everyone that is quarantined during this time can watch it and appreciate how great this film is.

Rating: 9.5/10

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