January 29, 2023
Ithaca, NY | 37°F


Disney tangles up classic fairy tale

Blonde damsel in distress? Check. Evil stepmother? Check. Handsome love interest? Check. Disney’s latest animated film, “Tangled,” follows the true recipe of the classic fairy tale.

Despite the superb vocals of singer Mandy Moore as Rapunzel and Zachary Levi, star of “Chuck,” as Flynn
Ryder, her surprisingly suave rescuer, this motion picture falls short of achieving the magic of former Disney princess films.

In a refreshing retelling complete with sassy dialogue and a more complicated story line, Disney’s Rapunzel is a far cry from the Grimm Brothers’ tale of a plebian girl adopted by a witch and rescued by a royal; instead, she’s a princess with magical hair, who’s liberated from her tower by a charming thief.

While Disney’s attempt to incorporate a more modern feminist element to Rapunzel’s story results in some plucky moments, such as when she defends Flynn from bandits using a cast iron pan, the movie remains nothing more than a cute and somewhat forgettable film.

Even a score by the famed composer Alan Menken, who wrote for films like “Beauty and the Beast,” can’t save “Tangled” from mediocrity. But, the lushly rendered animation shines, while the trendy 3-D adds to the movie’s mass appeal.

“Tangled” still has a few knots to work out. Despite a valiant effort to revamp Rapunzel, it lacks the panache of a Disney princess classic.

“Tangled” was written by Dan Fogelman and directed by Nathan Greno and Byron Howard.