Disney once owned the animation genre during the 90s and deservedly so, although there was little to no competition back then. The last decade proved that hand drawn motion pictures were too old school to contend with the likes of Pixar and Dreamworks computer animated films. After 2009’s Princess and the Frog failed to make an impact, Disney decided to ditch their previous efforts in favor of the new market to showcase their 50th animated feature. For such a historic event, they made the second most expensive movie of all time (it’s true), employing every CGI technique in the book to create the best looking animated film ever, while also being released in 3D. The result is Tangled, an incredibly vibrant visual showcase that resembles Disney’s traditional fairy tales with a modern sense of humor and terrific vocal performances.
The story revolves around Rapunzel, voiced by Mandy Moore, a kidnapped princess baby with long magical hair, who’s raised by the villainous Mother Gothel in a hidden tower deep within a forest, where she yearns to explore the world outside her bedroom window. Like Pocahontas, Belle and Arielle before her, Rapunzel is a heroine that is typical in fashion, but different in nature. Her relationship with the devious Gothel (a show stopping Donna Murphy) is the story’s center, while also giving the antagonist an almost human quality compared to Disney’s gallery of black-hearted rogues.
On the male side of things lies the hero, Flynn Rider (Zachary Levi), a charming criminal on the run by local authorities for stealing the royal crown. He hides in the tower thinking it’s empty until he meets a very hostile but curious Rapunzel. The two make a deal that requires Rider to escort Rapunzel inside the city to witness an annual celebration, and along the way they run into inevitable trouble along the likes of a pub full of misunderstood thugs and a pair of brutes called the Stabbington Brothers.
Check out the rest of our Tangled theatrical review.
On Blu-Ray, Tangled is one of the best looking animated film available. The lush color jumps off the screen and everything is animated smoothly. The phenomenal CGI blends seamlessly with the hand drawn backdrops to create a painted moving image that is unique among other computer animated films. Rapunzel’s luscious hair is another beauty in the film, streaming in smooth movements as she carries it in a bundle or soars through the air. The animation team obviously worked hard making this movie look the way it does, and considering its budget, they had lots of the latest technology to help them. Audio is particularly strong as well, especially in the musical numbers. Dialogue is reproduced efficiently and surrounds come in effectively. Effects are precise and the sound found here is definitely at par if not above other animated features.
The extra features on the Blu-Ray are worth your time to, with a making of, deleted scenes, extended songs, trailers and two original storybook openings. The making of feature in particular is interesting, showing the intense detail required in making Tangled appear so gorgeous as well as Disney’s history using CGI technology. This is the type of movie you can make with a massive budget and Disney pulled out all the stops for their 50th film.
For those who haven’t seen Tangled in theaters or if you own a Blu-Ray player at home, you should definitely give the film a look. Even if Disney movies aren’t your cup of tea, you’ll be surprised at the witty and pleasant approach Tangled exudes. The story may play it safe by sticking with its formulaic design, but the characters make you remember how good Disney is at crafting films for all ages. By and far though, simply watch it for the astounding visuals that make you adore watching movies in high definition; this is a compelling reason for why you bought a $2000 television. Tangled is a treat, honoring Disney as its 50th animated film, mixing the old and the new to create a film that is as vintage as it is contemporary.
Tangled is an incredibly vibrant visual showcase that resembles Disney’s traditional fairy tales with terrific vocal performances.