I decided to wait until the hype had died down before finally watching this sequel. Frozen is the latest most popular Disney film franchise that gets over-marketed, but I love it nonetheless, even if the first film has significant plot holes.
This sequel definitely answered many of my questions by its end, but it also left me with new ones. Before you proceed, you’ve been warned, this article contains spoilers so don’t continue if you haven’t seen this movie!
The first film was all about Elsa trying to control her powers, while Anna wants to restore the relationship she and her sister once had, the story focused mainly on the latter.
In this sequel, Elsa has a bigger role. She still doesn’t know much about herself and where she got her powers from. All she knows from her parents is that she was born with them but they died before she could find out anything else. You’d think her parents would leave behind any documents or something for her to find answers right?
Well, there’s a lot more backstory to this, Elsa and Anna’s parents tell the story to their daughters before the events of the first film about an enchanted forest where the magic of nature resides and four spiritual elements: earth, fire, water, and air. Conflict eventually rose between Arendelle and the Northuldra tribe of the forest that caused it to be sealed off.
In the present day, Elsa hears a mysterious voice calling to her and despite her attempts to ignore it, she eventually gives in and due to some collateral damage, she has no choice but to embark on a journey with her family to follow it.
I’ve mentioned that Elsa is my favourite in the Frozen universe because she is an independent character who truly loves her sister and is always trying to protect her. Sometimes she gets carried away, but she does it all out of love and there are other times where she has no choice but to continue on her own in order to protect her family. Her journey in this movie to me felt like it was a journey of self-discovery where she not only got the answers she was looking for, but also what her true calling was.
Anna hasn’t changed much but she does mature a little in this movie where she learns how to pick herself up after the worst has come and Olaf starts to be a little more human along with that.
There’s also a subplot in this film where Kristoff is trying to find the right moment to propose to Anna after they have been together for three years and that serves as a comic relief in a way. His ballad of Lost In The Woods delivered how powerful his feelings were but I cannot fathom why Anna would leave without saying goodbye.
While Into The Unknown was the most praised and advertised song, it didn’t become my favourite by the end of the film. Elsa finally answers the call, despite the risks. While the moment was epic, the song didn’t cut it for me.
I really liked the opening where Queen Iduna talks about Ahtohallan: a mythical river said to hold all the answers and truth one might be seeking, but if you go too deep into it you’ll “drown” as mentioned in the lullaby. I realized this was some foreshadowing.
The darkest moment of this film was when Elsa tries to cross the Dark Sea after learning that Ahtohallan is real from the wreckage of the ship her parents sailed on. Her parents had gone to search for Ahtohallan but died at sea. Elsa nearly drowns from the hands of the water spirit until she tames it. Then we get to my favorite part.
Elsa sings Show Yourself and it must have pierced my heart from the power it possessed and it led to Elsa learning the truth as she ventures into the glacier cavern: she is the fifth elemental spirit bridging the forest and the kingdom. Her powers were given to her from nature’s magic due to her mother being Northuldran who was also the voice calling to her.
The whole revelation the song brings truly put me to tears and the song was stuck in my head for several days that followed. Elsa’s new dress by the end of the film is also stunning and suits her well. She feels much more confident in herself and happy.
What’s interesting is that this is the first Disney film I’ve watched that doesn’t have an antagonist. Instead, this movie’s conflict resolves around past sins how Elsa and Anna’s grandfather tricked the Northuldran tribe into an alliance, but instead has the dam built not as an alliance, but to cut off their resources and then he kills the tribe elder which starts the war.
Elsa learns this among other things of the past while she explores deeper into Ahtohallan and then she suddenly freezes solid upon seeing the ultimate truth.
That was something I did not understand at all. I mean, Anna eventually froze because she was struck in the heart. But how and why did it happen to Elsa? I thought the cold never bothered her, not anymore.
In the movie it says she ventured too far into a dangerous part of Ahtohallan just as the lullaby indicates you’ll “drown”. Fan theories suggest that perhaps the deeper you go, the more answers you obtain, but the colder it becomes until you freeze to death. It could also mean that dwelling too much in the past causes you to get stuck there. Hell, she even heard her mother’s voice warn her about it before she jumped down into that hole. Another theory suggests that Ahtohallan is the source of Elsa’s powers, including her immunity to the cold and possibly extremely below zero, and when she ventured too deep, the magic in the cavern took that away from her.
Disney can make things complicated when they appeal to all ages and we adults try to piece everything together while kids just enjoy it for the songs. Then again, all still ends well as Elsa thaws out and reunites with her family. Anna undoes their grandfather’s work (watching her hold Olaf as he died was also heartbreaking) and in the end Elsa decides that she belongs in the enchanted forest as the fifth spirit and protector of the people there.
She then abdicates the Arendelle throne and it passes down to Anna. I’m not sure how the people will react to her as queen now, but Anna has always been more into the royal lifestyle than her sister. So, does that mean Kristoff will be king now?
Elsa’s new life in the forest, she definitely seems better off there. She even made friends with a cute fire salamander which reminds me so much of Rapunzel’s pet chameleon Pascal.
One last note, I wish fans would stop pushing for her to get a love interest, should there be a third film. We don’t have enough Disney characters that remain single due to their cherished independence and frankly, I don’t think Elsa needs anybody. Due to the movie’s popularity, her remaining on her own I think would send a message to our society that single people are not something that needs to be fixed.
Anyway, my overall thoughts on this movie, it’s well done and fills nearly all of the plot holes that the first movie left me with. It did leave more by its end, but I loved more of its songs and the evolution of its characters so much that I’m going to be generous with my rating. I think it’s my new favourite modern day Disney film now.