(Still) Tangled Up!

"Tangled," although sure to be enjoyed by all kinds of audiences, also deals with the trappings of mother-daughter relationships. It is about the story of Rapunzel, a character Ninipie knows too well from her bedtime stories. In the original Grimm version, the reason why the witch kept Rapunzel in the tower was because her parents "owed" her after the couple stole her medicinal plants. Disney gives the story more depth by supplying a more feasible, magical, and rather believable reason. (I'm not telling. Watch the movie! J)

Like most kids, my 6-year-old daughter Nini (Ninipie, we call her) has the habit of watching movies she likes several times over. Her latest entertainment is - you guessed it - Disney's "Tangled," which was shown in local cinemas late last year. Since her dad bought a DVD, she's watched it again and again (and again). She even asked me for the lyrics to one of the songs, had it memorized, and sings it with me every so often. I love Disney and I love the fact that watching Disney animation has become some sort of a sacred tradition between her and me.

Personal Reflections. In "Tangled," the witch was not described outright as a 'witch'; just made out to be a cunning, selfish old hag named Gothel. She needed Rapunzel in order to stay young and fools the young girl into thinking that she is her mother. She prevents her 'daughter' from leaving the tower by brainwashing her about how the world is a bad place; full of people who would only want to hurt her. She plays the part of a loving mum but we know that her only concern is herself. Rapunzel, of course, kidnapped as a baby and eager to please her manipulative mother, was blinded by this false pretense.

Rapunzel's real parents were the king and queen, who got into the habit of releasing thousands of lanterns into the sky every year on her birthday, in hopes that their lost princess will return to them one day. Our girl noticed those lanterns from her tower and her desperate need to see them up close is what drove the main plot. The king and queen never said one word in the entire movie but there was no need. As a parent, I felt their pain upon losing a child and as they continued to hope for her return. (I totally cried when they were finally reunited in the end.)

Watching "Tangled," I reflected how it can be also considered a form of 'selfishness' if a parent stops her child from exploring the world and learning on his/her own. I've heard about one too many parents scrutinizing their kids' every move and the children end up becoming a little more rebellious than "normal" when they get older. Gothel forbidding Rapunzel from seeing the lanterns just fanned the girl's desire. So when opportunity came, she made a deal with a bandit who found his way into the tower, Flynn Rider, sets out and defies her mother's wishes - finding truth and love in the process.

Fresh, Funny, Magical. 
"Tangled" is Disney's 50th animated movie and was reportedly the most expensive animated film ever made. (Seeing how detailed each strand of Rapunzel's long golden hair is, I am not surprised.) It features the voices of Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, and Broadway star Donna Murphy. True to the tradition of Disney animated movies; it is packed with magic, wonder, endearing characters, and winning musical numbers. My husband and I found the humor extremely fresh, and I loved the way the story turned out. I regret though that we weren't able to watch it in 3D. I'm sure that lantern scene (which makes me cry every time!) would have been really fantastic.

Naomi, 26, has been married for six years to her husband, Gan, and is mom to six-year-old Nini-pie. She works as a freelance web copywriter on oDesk and thus, spends most of her day in front of the computer. Apart from spending time with her family, she likes reading, art, watching suspense thriller films, football, going to the beach, tweeting, and cooking (although if that last one likes her back is subject to debate).


Anonymous said...

My favorite scenes were when they almost drowned and she sang to light up her hair, the lantern scene, and when he cut her hair with one swift hand in order to save her from Gothel.

It's one of the best modern day movies of Disney, and I hope Holly will get to watch it (and become addicted to it like Ninie) when she grows older. :)

artnanay said...

We have this! and the kids liked it too..and they're boys. ha ha

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