Saturday, April 18, 2015

Fix the Scene, "Frozen"

Frozen” is an okay movie and illustrates perfectly why so many films shoot for braod mass appeal: IT MAKES A SHIT TON OF MONEY.  I find more and more issues with it as I look back thru my mind’s eye (that the background animation is a little wanting, houses look a bit fake, that sort of thing).  My biggest issue has to do with the movies two villains, Hanz seducing his way to a crown when he could have just won it thru administrative merit (Kind of like Loki) and losing it because he was an idiot; and the Skinny Duke, whose name is inconsequential, just that is a silly character explicitly out for money who gets shat on at the end of the movie.

I just found Hanz being the villain to be unnecessary. Her out of control powers were the real villain, and if you wanted to add peril for the heroes that is easy too.

-Hanz (Kisses Anna and it has no effect): That can't be right.
-Anna (her hair still turning white): Try again.
-Hanz (kisses her again to no effect): I guess a true loves kiss isn't enough.
-Anna: It has to be.
-Hanz (steel determination on his face): Anna I can't lose you. I have to do something more.
-Anna: Hanz just stay with me, I will get better.
-Hanz: No, I know what I have to do. I have to stop Elsa.
-Anna: No.
-Hanz: She destroyed the kingdom. And now you’re dying. There is no other way.
-Anna: No!
-Hanz: I can't lose you. If there is a choice of who to save, I am saving you!

There is really no reason for him to not kiss her.
The movie then proceeds as it did before, but now Hanz is trying to save the kingdom and his (not) true love because he is misguided, rather than because he is a bastard.  You could have him do many traditionally heroic things, like have him slay another giant snow monster that is protecting Elsa, but ultimately have Anna stop him (just like in the movie) from killing Elsa.
The end of “Frozen” would be him leaving, disgraced but apologetic, that he should have listened to Anna and found another way, perhaps saying that as the youngest brother he was always jumping too fast to being a hero rather than being cautious. Anna forgives him but explains that they are not in love, and that this is a rift that will never close between them.
Not every movie needs a transparent villain. Because in real life few bad guys are pure bad.  The villains in this movie sucked. It should have just been Elsa's lack of self-control was the villain.
And furthermore the skinny old Duke shouldn’t get punished either because he did not do anything wrong.  But the movie says the Duke did basically nothing but try to kill someone with out of control dangerous super powers. Oh, and he wanted to make profitable business arrangements. What an asshole, with his drive and ambition. Clearly deserves to be embargoed.  Here is how it should have been.  His forgiveness scene

-Skinny Duke: I am sorry for my conduct, I reacted out of fear and personal weakness and drove you to self-imposed exile, and I ask for your mercy my queen.
-Elsa: I too was driven by fear and caused great harm.  (Pause looking at all the goods being unloaded from the Duke’s ship) but I too seek the forgiveness of my people just as you seek my forgiveness. I offer you a pardon, but in the future you should seek to make reparations with my kingdom.
-Skinny Duke: Most assuredly my grace. I came here to seek profits, made a fool of myself, and then became a danger, the least I can do is try to make reparations thru trade and charity.
-Elsa: Just as I must make reparations to my people thru good judgement and just rule.
-Skinny Duke: It is good that we can grow and become greater people thru adversity.
-Elsa: Indeed.
I am sorry, and I know when to admit I was wrong about someone.  I feel more sorry for all the ice witches we burned to death in my homeland.

            There are numerous other issues.  Not the least of which being how awful Elsa’s parents were in handling the situation (I can see how this movie gets a lot of “gay metaphor” press for telling the little girl to “conceal, don’t feel” as if the Kingdom were one giant pray-away camp).  But those issues were covered by the internet series “How it Should have Ended”.

(I previously complained about a particular scene in "Man of Steel" if you would like to read more of my stuff trying to fix scenes, and if you would like to suggest other scenes I should fix please comment).
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