The early reactions have arrived for Disney's animated sequel, Frozen 2. 2019 has already been a massively successful year for the Mouse House at the box office, with no less than five of their movies grossing over $1 billion worldwide. Most notably, Avengers: Endgame surpassed Avatar to become the highest-grossing film of all time (not adjusted for inflation). However, they've still got a pair of highly-anticipated tentpoles arriving over the next two months: Frozen 2 and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
With Frozen 2 projected for a $100 million opening and The Rise of Skywalker matching early box office predictions for The Force Awakens, it's safe to say both films will be very successful (even if they fall short of the benchmarks set by their predecessors). More importantly, they're also looking pretty good, with the Frozen 2 marketing painting the movie as a more complex, yet enchanting followup to Disney's 2013 smash-hit. Now, following its world premiere, critics have started weighing in with their thoughts.
Disney has officially lifted the social media embargo on Frozen 2, with just under two weeks to go before it reaches theaters. To get an idea of what's being said about the sequel (so far), check out the Twitter reactions that've been embedded below.
Loved #Frozen2. It’s a darker, more complex and more emotionally mature story, continuing everything you love about the first movie and upping the ante while maintaining the intimacy of the original. Gorgeous animation, wonderful new characters and (FINALLY) a Kristoff song! ❄️ pic.twitter.com/ZB7Dyul6Ia— Drew Taylor (@DrewTailored) November 8, 2019
Just got out of #Frozen2! It doesn’t capture all the magic of the first, but it’s got: Elsa in a wetsuit, Anna ugly crying, Sven ugly crying, Kristoff singing a ‘90s rock ballad, Olaf at his wisest, and... THIS GOOD BOY!! (We must protect him at all costs.) pic.twitter.com/a4WJ0k08Hs— Alison Foreman (@alfaforeman) November 8, 2019
I really, really liked FROZEN II. A movie that doesn’t even try to have a traditional villain, but instead explores the fears of people, groups you haven’t met yet. And what happens when you learn your own tragic truth.— Mike Ryan (@mikeryan) November 8, 2019
Frozen 2 creates musical magic, but story wise, doesn't quite reach the level of the original. Olaf is certainly the highlight of the film & brings much needed levity to a pretty dark film. It feels like it is for a much older crowd than the target demo. #frozen2 #Frozen pic.twitter.com/ba5YTOpP76— Ashley Menzel (@AshleyGMenzel) November 8, 2019
#Frozen2 is good, of not as good as the first. It looks great and has delightful banter, but the story feels like "dark sequel" Mad Libs (without the courage of its convictions). With two exceptions, the songs aren't very good, playing as redundant "explain my motivation" tunes. pic.twitter.com/4cGa8wpKGH— Scott Mendelson (@ScottMendelson) November 8, 2019
#Frozen2 is breathtakingly beautiful and leans in on empowerment for its characters. I cried at least 3 times. From the story to the last thread on Elsa's dress, the care and love put into it shows. And, good news, every one of Team Elsa gets at least one solo this time around.— Alisha Grauso (@AlishaGrauso) November 8, 2019
Frozen 2 loses some of the magic of the original but its soundtrack is surprisingly superior. Kristoff, Sven, & Olaf standout even though the script leaves Anna & Elsa out in the cold. It is a decent sequel but definitely a step down from the first. #Frozen2 pic.twitter.com/xkEmVE4w9j— Scott Menzel (@TheOtherScottM) November 8, 2019
#Frozen2 seems to exist primarily bc box office for Frozen 1 demanded a sequel, but there’s still plenty to love here: eye-popping fantasy sequences, nice moments for your faves, LOTS of new songs incl the earworm-y “Into the Unknown,” and an unbearably cute new critter pic.twitter.com/PHg80bc1Bp— Angie J. Han (@ajhan) November 8, 2019
Many of these reactions agree Frozen 2 is darker and more mature than the first movie, if perhaps less magical for it. It sounds like the film's creatives (directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee, along with writer Allison Schroeder) did a respectable job of evolving the sequel to keep up with those who're kids when they watched the original Frozen six years ago. However, it appears the story is a bit uneven and doesn't tackle its themes with as much depth as one would've hoped for. Still, the first movie set a rather high bar for quality and is still considered one of Disney's best (if not the best) animated features of the 2010s. If Frozen 2 falls short of clearing that, it seems it's still a perfectly good sequel on its own terms.
Story issues aside, the early reactions suggest there're plenty of other things to love about Frozen 2. The trailers have highlighted the film's gorgeous autumnal color palette, so it's not surprising to hear the movie itself is full of "eye-popping fantasy sequences". Similarly, it seems the sequel's new tunes (which were written by Frozen duo Robert and Kristen Anderson-Lopez) are quite catchy, with Elsa's power ballad, "Into the Unknown", being singled out as a highlight. Between all that and Elsa's adorable newfound lizard pal Bruni, Frozen 2 sounds like a worthy followup at the moment. We will see if general audiences agree when the film arrives later this month.
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- Frozen II (2019) release date: Nov 22, 2019