Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Princess and The Frog

Starring the voice talents of Anika Noni Rose, Bruno Campos, Keith David, Jim Cummings, Michael-Leon Wooley, Jennifer Cody,Oprah Winfrey, and Terence Howard

Directed by Ron Clements and John Musker

Release Date: December 11th, 2009

A lively and colorful film from Disney Animation.
Tianna had a dream in her heart since she was a little girl to open her own restaurant in New Orleans. However, in 1920's New Orleans, life as a single African-American woman is hard enough since she has to work 3 full-time jobs just to make her dream come true. While Tia slaves in the kitchen, a dashing prince from the country of Maldonia has come to the grand city during Mardi Gras to find a wealthy, beautiful woman to marry so that he can regain his riches from his parents. Faster than you can say "Happily Ever After", an evil voodoo doctor known as the Shadow Man has cursed Prince Naveen (Campos) to turn into a frog, and can only become human again by kissing a beautiful princess. But, fairy tales aren't always how we expect them to turn out...
After the disasterous "Home on the Range", Disney has gone to the master of Pixar Animation, John Lassater, to executive produce their new animated films from now on. Thankfully, Lassater has given his magic touch not only to 2008's Bolt (starring John Travolta) but also to this 2009 Jazzy animated adaption of the classic fairly tale, "The Frog Prince". "TP&TF" is a magificently produced animated film with bright, dazzling visuals and some amazing songs such as "Friends on the Other Side" and "Ma Belle Evangeline". I thoroughly enjoyed how fun and engaging the film is, especially with the voice casting of Anika Noni Rose as Tianna and Jim Cummings as Ray-Ray. My only real complaint with the voice casting has to do with Oprah Winnfrey as Tianna's mother; it's a good part, but why spring for such an A-list celebrity for a vastly minor part? Personnally, I would have cast a lesser-known actress in need of a comeback (but that's just me). Also, I really enjoyed the sinister Shadow Man, and would have loved to have seen a bit more of the character than what we're given in the film itself.
The Princess and the Frog is a return to greatness with Disney animation, thanks in part to the colorful animation style and the fantastic soundtrack.
Rating: * * * * of 5

Click Here to buy The Princess and the Frog (Single Disc Widescreen)

Click Here to buy The Princess and the Frog (Single Disc Blu-ray)

Click Here to buy The Princess and The Frog (Three Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

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