Frozen has generated over a billion dollars at the global box office, making it one of Disney's most financially successful films. People have really fallen in love with its fairytale world, big musical numbers and surprisingly progressive female characters. It's gained enough attention to attract attacks from right-wing trolls, as well as claims that it represents the company's turn towards more overt promotion of Christian values. But for all the cash and controversy, Frozen is little more than a solid if unspectacular offering from the Big D. Here are 5 Disney films we think are better.
Before Frozen came along and readjusted the way Disney princesses were supposed to behave, there was Tangled. Taking the tale of lank-haired towerling Rapunzel and turning the protagonist into a tomboyish, shoe-shunning dreamer was a great move. The film is also genuinely funny, gorgeous to behold and has its own clutch of memorable songs, which Mandy More belts out with a little more warmth than Idina Menzel.
2) The Princess and the Frog
This is Disney's most inventive retelling of a classic fable, with the action taking place in New Orleans and the Creole vibe freshening the stale 'white people in a castle' formula that it's relied on in the past. The loveable cast of supporting characters, including a trumpet-playing alligator, and another strong female lead help this edge out its frostier recent offering.
3) High School Musical 3: Senior Year
OK, hear us out! From a financial point of view, HSM3 is an even bigger win for Disney than Frozen. It cost $11 million to make and pulled in almost $253 million in ticket sales. To achieve a feat on the same scale, frozen will need to make close to $3.5 billion, which isn't going to happen. It's also got a few great songs, cast members who're bursting with enthusiasm and a last-day-of-school atmosphere that's infectious and relatable.
4) Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
Forget about the so-so sequels and the endless merchandising. The original Pirates of the Caribbean movie is stunning piece of stand-alone family entertainment. It made pirates cool again after aborted attempts in the 1990s, including flops like Cutthroat Island, and turned Johnny Depp into a mainstream movie star. And weirdly Keira Knightley was only 18 when she first played Elizabeth Swann, exhibiting surprising maturity in the role.
5) The Rescuers Down Under
Before Disney was into rendering preposterous realistic snow in Frozen, it was dabbling with CGI all the way back in 1990. And while The Rescuers Down Under may have a couple of effects that look crude by modern standards, it managed to prove that hand-drawn animation and digital effects could be blended with impressive results. Its fun, engaging story briskly told over a 77 minute run time is also a welcome break from the often over-long kids' films of today. If you've never seen it, it's well worth a look.