The Princess and the Frog. My Review.

princess-and-the-frog-poster

If you read my previous post you know how excited I was to see this movie.

First, let me tell you what I DID like. I thought the animation was fantastic (as always with Disney) and really enjoyed the Southern theme. The music was heavily influenced by old New Orleans Jazz… which I loved. The majority of characters were charming, funny and quite likable as was the general storyline of hard-work, dreams-come-true and finding true love in a happily ever after sort of way.

Now.

With that being said, I was actually kind of shocked in regard to the darkness of this movie. I am very aware that voodoo is a well-known part of the New Orleans culture. I knew from the movie trailers that a spell of sorts had turned the prince into a frog, however, I did not realize how much emphasis was going to be placed on voodoo itself. For example, there was a whole song about having friends “on the other side” (referencing evil spirits)… during which there were very dark hellish images and demonic spirits. At one point, the voodoo villain makes a deal (with what I assume to be the devil… it was the leader of the spirits) to give the lost souls of the city over to him in exchange for him sending his evil spirits to capture the frog… so he could get more of the frog’s blood (which he wore in a vial around his neck) to keep the spell alive. Which continued on to show the evil spirits overtaking the frog. Voodoo dolls, tarot cards, fortune telling, talking masks, shadow people, spells, graveyards… all reoccurring images throughout the film. It was overtly evil (which was accurate to what it was trying to portray) but simply put, completely demonic.

I really did not expect something like that from Disney. As I sat in the theater, I was continuously questioning whether I would allow my future children to see this movie. Being in a theater full of children, I kept trying to rationalize that these kids probably see these spirits as “monsters”. After all, the underlying theme for most childrens’ movies is good vs evil; children are used to seeing villains, monsters, witches, etc. (that sort of thing didn’t phase me as a kid… but Scooby-Doo monsters was as scary as it got for me) So seeing an animated demonic spirit probably would not register to kids. Right? But it registered to me… and it just made me feel weird about the movie. As an adult, I don’t see how images like that get a G rating. I don’t think it is suitable for young children.

After the movie was over, I discussed with my husband that I was kind of taken aback by Disney making a children’s animation about demons. Part of me was bringing it up so he could assure me that I was overreacting. But he completely agreed. I don’t want to give away the ending (as if you couldn’t already guess what happens at the end of Disney movie haha) but it wasn’t as if “Good” was the victor (skip to the next paragraph if you don’t want to be spoiled)… The devil killed the voodoo guy and brought him to what you can assume to be hell. Which allowed the frog to live. In that climax moment, the devil took on the role of hero for eliminating the voodoo guy, thus, eliminating the capture of the frog. It just didn’t sit well with me.

There was also a second voodoo practitioner, an old woman. She was portrayed as a very fun-loving, light-hearted character with oracle-like wisdom. She had a pet snake (again, evil undertones) which was her “helper”.  You never quite sensed evil from her; she was likable and “good”. She helped the frogs. (and just so happened to practice voodoo on the side. minor detail.) Her part in the movie led you to believe that some voodoo is bad and some is good. Kind of like the wicked witch and the good witch on the Wizard of Oz. Both had magical powers, however, most people are perfectly comfortable with Glenda (the good witch) practicing her magic. I guess the same logic could be applied to this character.

I don’t know.

It was just weird. I felt weird through many parts of the movie. And I wish I didn’t. Rather, I wish Disney would have left the voodoo details a little more vague and a little less accurate. I just don’t feel like that is an appropriate topic to be discussed through what is supposed to be a light-hearted animation. There should be a moral to the story… and I guess it is either a) don’t mess with voodoo or b) if you do, don’t make any deal with the devil that you can’t keep.

Because of that, I was disappointed. I’m not trying to convey that it is “wrong” to go see it, I just want to give y’all a little more information (than I had) to make an informed decision…especially if you are taking your children. I’m not scarred by it, but I wouldn’t buy it when it comes out on DVD. Which is a tremendous disappointment considering how much I enjoyed the main characters, setting and music.

To sum it up, there are many good, entertaining, wholesome parts of this movie. But, in my humble opinion, I don’t think I am going to be the only one walking out of the theater feeling a little uncomfortable with the excessive emphasis on evil spirits or the depth in which they delved into voodoo.

Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to go bathe myself in the Bible.

Wondering how many children (and perhaps myself)

will have nightmares tonight courtesy of Disney,

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PS… if anyone else saw this movie, I would love to hear your commentary. Did it bother you at all?

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  • http://www.mrsyellowhat.blogspot.com Tara G.

    I read a review on Plugged In after I saw this movie was coming out, and I was so disappointed because I thought it would have been fun to take my oldest to go see a princess movie. This will probably sound weird, but I am really over people thinking that about us (it’s ok if we’re weird, I’m not accountable to them for my kids!)- our daughter will be 7 in January and she has not seen a Disney princess movie yet. Part of that is just us recognizing that this particular child is extremely visual and she would have nightmares. We have other reasons as well, and just last night as I told Mr. YH about this movie, we discussed again if she was ready to see a princess movie- it’s not that she’ll never see them, but as parents, we’re called to help these little ones guard their hearts until they are at a place they can do it themselves, and it’s simply not time for these. Let me say that as a Disney fan, it was hard for me when we first came to these conclusions!! But I’ve seen her become a girly girl who loves tea parties, dressing up a like a princess or lady, pretending to be a character in one of her books (she is an avid reader and loves the Classics- many are abridged for young readers). Melissa, you are wise to begin sorting through these issues. Parenting is tough, and it’s tough to do so as a Christian in an increasingly hostile world. I find that things I did as a kid just can’t be done with my children because of the culture and the need to pull out of it. God gives a lot of standards, but He also leaves a lot of room for personality when we parent- blessings on you as you begin to discern what He wants for your family to do!

  • http://www.mrsyellowhat.blogspot.com Tara G.

    I read a review on Plugged In after I saw this movie was coming out, and I was so disappointed because I thought it would have been fun to take my oldest to go see a princess movie. This will probably sound weird, but I am really over people thinking that about us (it’s ok if we’re weird, I’m not accountable to them for my kids!)- our daughter will be 7 in January and she has not seen a Disney princess movie yet. Part of that is just us recognizing that this particular child is extremely visual and she would have nightmares. We have other reasons as well, and just last night as I told Mr. YH about this movie, we discussed again if she was ready to see a princess movie- it’s not that she’ll never see them, but as parents, we’re called to help these little ones guard their hearts until they are at a place they can do it themselves, and it’s simply not time for these. Let me say that as a Disney fan, it was hard for me when we first came to these conclusions!! But I’ve seen her become a girly girl who loves tea parties, dressing up a like a princess or lady, pretending to be a character in one of her books (she is an avid reader and loves the Classics- many are abridged for young readers). Melissa, you are wise to begin sorting through these issues. Parenting is tough, and it’s tough to do so as a Christian in an increasingly hostile world. I find that things I did as a kid just can’t be done with my children because of the culture and the need to pull out of it. God gives a lot of standards, but He also leaves a lot of room for personality when we parent- blessings on you as you begin to discern what He wants for your family to do!

  • http://prairieflowerfarm.blogspot.com Linda Stubbs

    I am new to your web and will be coming often. I LOVE IT! It is adorable. Well maybe beautiful is better. I read your post about the Princess and the Frog. Oh my,,,,,,,,,,,,, how sad. I worned all my son’s that have little kids. Thank you for taking the time to post this. It is getting so dark out there. So thankful you pointed people to the light JESUS! Thank you again.
    Blessings, Linda
    You have a Merry CHRISTmas

  • http://prairieflowerfarm.blogspot.com Linda Stubbs

    I am new to your web and will be coming often. I LOVE IT! It is adorable. Well maybe beautiful is better. I read your post about the Princess and the Frog. Oh my,,,,,,,,,,,,, how sad. I worned all my son’s that have little kids. Thank you for taking the time to post this. It is getting so dark out there. So thankful you pointed people to the light JESUS! Thank you again.
    Blessings, Linda
    You have a Merry CHRISTmas

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    Thanks Melissa for your review. Sorry the movie turned out to be like that. I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts. This will be a movie I won’t be seeing.
    Thanks again…

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    Thanks Melissa for your review. Sorry the movie turned out to be like that. I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts. This will be a movie I won’t be seeing.
    Thanks again…

  • vikki v.

    I just returned from taking my two year old grandaughter to see this movie. I was horrified with the voodoo, skulls, and blood not to mention the stereotypical black maid and the big white Southern rich man (even named Big Daddy). My daughter, grandaughter, and I walked out before we got to meet the voodoo priestess. Disney has outdone themselves — this movie offends blacks, Southerners, and Christians in one fell swoop. I don’t plan to see movies or purchase any Disney products for a very long time to come, if ever again.

  • vikki v.

    I just returned from taking my two year old grandaughter to see this movie. I was horrified with the voodoo, skulls, and blood not to mention the stereotypical black maid and the big white Southern rich man (even named Big Daddy). My daughter, grandaughter, and I walked out before we got to meet the voodoo priestess. Disney has outdone themselves — this movie offends blacks, Southerners, and Christians in one fell swoop. I don’t plan to see movies or purchase any Disney products for a very long time to come, if ever again.

  • http://omega57.wordpress.com(abusheladnapickle) Linda (a bushel and a pickle)

    Thanks for your review. I did wonder about the Voodoo part. Us moms have lots of choices to make for our kiddos and for ourselves. Discernment is so needed and often other concerned voices too. Thanks for your insights. Hope your “bath” went well. We can never have too much of that!

  • Rob

    Let me first say, I am a Disney Freak! I found myself LOVING this movie….the music, the animation, the story and then……. BAM! My Christian conscience woke me and shook me to look at my 3 and 5 year old and say to them, “Would Jehovah or Jesus approve of this?” To my happiness, they both said no! We walked out and got our money back. I am so disappointed they are willing to seduce our children with the spiritism. I think your review was perfect!

  • Rob

    Let me first say, I am a Disney Freak! I found myself LOVING this movie….the music, the animation, the story and then……. BAM! My Christian conscience woke me and shook me to look at my 3 and 5 year old and say to them, “Would Jehovah or Jesus approve of this?” To my happiness, they both said no! We walked out and got our money back. I am so disappointed they are willing to seduce our children with the spiritism. I think your review was perfect!

  • Michelle

    I felt very uncomfortable with the movie when I saw it, due to the witchcraft, voodoo, evil spirits, and demons that were in it. I won’t be buying it for my daughter when it comes out on DVD. It is bad enough I had taken her to the movies to see it. The good parts were good, and there were some good morals in it, and the movie would have been enjoyed, if there had not been the actual evil that deals with the devil and the other side, that they kept mentioning in the movie. The spirits were very disturbing. It was not a “feel good movie” after it was over. We were really looking forward to a new disney princess movie. I was really disappointed that Disney would put out a princess movie with such evil in it. It is the kind of stuff that helps produce the evil things you seem to hear about on the news, more and more now. Our children should not be watching such stuff in a G rated Disney cartoon.

  • Michelle

    I felt very uncomfortable with the movie when I saw it, due to the witchcraft, voodoo, evil spirits, and demons that were in it. I won’t be buying it for my daughter when it comes out on DVD. It is bad enough I had taken her to the movies to see it. The good parts were good, and there were some good morals in it, and the movie would have been enjoyed, if there had not been the actual evil that deals with the devil and the other side, that they kept mentioning in the movie. The spirits were very disturbing. It was not a “feel good movie” after it was over. We were really looking forward to a new disney princess movie. I was really disappointed that Disney would put out a princess movie with such evil in it. It is the kind of stuff that helps produce the evil things you seem to hear about on the news, more and more now. Our children should not be watching such stuff in a G rated Disney cartoon.

  • Allyson

    Melissa, I am so glad that you reviewed this movie before I took my 6 year old daughter to it. We were given tickets at Disneyland and I have been waiting to take her. Thankfully, we have been busy with Christmas things which leaves us with little free time. When I saw the musical performance on the Mark Twain at Disneyland I was disturbed. I didn’t like the stereotypical depiction of the south and thought (secretly hoping) that the voodoo parts would just be a smaller part and the evil element that is defeated by good. I am disheartened that isn’t the case. I also thought that it was distasteful to NOT show an African American male as a prince. I get the need to have inter-racial couples, but can we have a black prince first? Disney could have chosen African royalty to depict, but rather, they chose evil overtones that underscore bigotry.

    I am upset by Disney portraying this part of southern culture and African Americans in this manner. When I heard that there was going to be a black princess, I thought that time had come. But when that princess is overshadowed by voodoo and the movie public not even given the example of a strong and worthy black man as a prince, I am infuriated. Vikki V is right, how many people did they offend with this movie? Just about everyone. I will not be using my free tickets to see the movie with my daughter. Thank you for your Christian and future mom based review. It is greatly appreciated.

  • Allyson

    Melissa, I am so glad that you reviewed this movie before I took my 6 year old daughter to it. We were given tickets at Disneyland and I have been waiting to take her. Thankfully, we have been busy with Christmas things which leaves us with little free time. When I saw the musical performance on the Mark Twain at Disneyland I was disturbed. I didn’t like the stereotypical depiction of the south and thought (secretly hoping) that the voodoo parts would just be a smaller part and the evil element that is defeated by good. I am disheartened that isn’t the case. I also thought that it was distasteful to NOT show an African American male as a prince. I get the need to have inter-racial couples, but can we have a black prince first? Disney could have chosen African royalty to depict, but rather, they chose evil overtones that underscore bigotry.

    I am upset by Disney portraying this part of southern culture and African Americans in this manner. When I heard that there was going to be a black princess, I thought that time had come. But when that princess is overshadowed by voodoo and the movie public not even given the example of a strong and worthy black man as a prince, I am infuriated. Vikki V is right, how many people did they offend with this movie? Just about everyone. I will not be using my free tickets to see the movie with my daughter. Thank you for your Christian and future mom based review. It is greatly appreciated.

  • http://www.faithfamilyhomefriends.blogspot.com/ Rebecca

    I just came across your blog recently. :) Thank you so much for your information about this movie. I’ve heard mixed reviews on it and after reading this post, I don’t plan on watching this Disney movie. :( It is sad that they put so much darkness in a movie made for children. Thanks again!
    .-= Rebecca´s last blog ..Happy Spring!!! =-.

  • http://www.faithfamilyhomefriends.blogspot.com/ Rebecca

    I just came across your blog recently. :) Thank you so much for your information about this movie. I’ve heard mixed reviews on it and after reading this post, I don’t plan on watching this Disney movie. :( It is sad that they put so much darkness in a movie made for children. Thanks again!
    .-= Rebecca´s last blog ..Happy Spring!!! =-.

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