Having had mixed fortunes creating one of their own in The Princess And The Frog, Disney revives one of the more traditional princesses in an energetic take on Rapunzel that’s anything but Grimm.
Finding a little leg-room between Shrek-style parody and Mouse House sincerity, co-directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard turn the age-old yarn into something surprisingly hip.
You could conceivably see a parallel between America’s isolationist mentality and the fear of the unknown that helps keep Rapunzel (Mandy Moore) a prisoner.
Or you could liken her captor – a vile old crone (Donna Murphy) who uses her magic hair to keep young and beautiful – to any number of surgery-enhanced ladies of an uncertain age.
Then again, it’s the aura of timelessness that sets Disney’s 50th animated feature apart from the current crop of forgettable CG ’toons, screenwriter Dan Fogelman wisely steering clear of the sort of pop-culture references that will date these films as surely as tree rings.
Admittedly Alan Menken’s tunes aren’t especially memorable, being overly reliant on linguistic curlicues when a decent chorus would suffice. But overall, this is a lively, enjoyable romp.
With only two alternative openings on the DVD, you’re better off with Blu – more songs, more scenes and a Making Of.
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