This week I finally took what seems to be an unavoidable step for a parent, and I really enjoyed it. Yes, I finally watched Frozen.
And you know what, I actually liked it! There were some very funny lines, the animation was incredible, and the story moved along very well. But most importantly for a purposeful parent, I thought that it taught some very good lessons. The very clear point of the movie, as explained by Olaf, is awesome:
An act of true love heals a frozen heart.
There are a lot of other wonderful points that you can teach your kids:
- Fear is the enemy.
- Don’t shut yourself off from the ones who love you.
- We all have talents and we should use them for good, not bad.
- Do not be ashamed of who you are and what you can do.
- Sometimes the bad or mean person is really just afraid and in need of a friend.
- Anna, Kristoff, Olaf, and even Sven were all cheerfully optimistic and showed gritty determination.
- I liked the little lesson that even a princess looks disheveled when she first wakes up!
I only had misgivings about a couple parts:
Love Is An Open Door. This catchy song accompanies Anna and Hans as they fall in love. They sneak past the guards and exult in their love for each other. Not exactly what I want my daughters to be singing when they are teenagers and hanging out with teenage boys. Granted, the movie goes on to expose the foolishness of giving away your heart to someone too early, so the plot line is redeemed. However, sometimes our hearts take a deeper meaning from the emotional message and the catchy tune even while our heads understand the lesson. (Especially in younger kids, studies show that they have a tendency to model the bad behavior that they see rather than focus on the lessons that the bad behavior brought about. More on that another time.)
Let It Go. Elsa has been locked up, both literally and emotionally, ever since her accident. She finally is pushed into the situation where she cannot hide anymore, so she triumphantly decides to let it go. Again, the general concept is redeeming: Don’t be afraid of who you are. Don’t hide from others. Let yourself feel. But some of the words aren’t what I would want my kids singing at the top of their lungs: “No right, no wrong, no rules for me. I’m free.” And although she says that she was free, she actually just traded her previous solitude for a more selfish kind of solitude. However, I asked my girls (8 and 6) about this song, and it pretty much went over their heads, so that is good. They basically understood that she used her powers to make an awesome ice castle…that works.
But all in all, I agree with the general consensus that this is the best Disney movie for a while. I agreed with the overall tone and lesson of the story and they kept it pretty clean. With just a few minutes of purposeful parenting you will be able to reinforce the positive lessons from this fun movie.
I’d like to challenge you – at dinner tonight or whenever you have time and everyone is in a good mood, take the opportunity to ask questions about Frozen. Goodness knows that your kids like to talk, and they probably love to talk about Frozen, so it is an attractive way to talk about something meaningful and enduring. The night after we watched it I asked the kids the questions on the printable below, and we had a great discussion. It was gratifying to hear the lessons that they learned, like don’t get married to someone you just met! And it was interesting to hear the parts that they found confusing. After asking the questions and listening to their answers and their tangents, I was able to casually point out a few more important lessons that I wanted to impart. I hope that you find your discussion with your kids as rewarding as ours was. We’d love to hear – what did you glean from your family time?
Frozen Conversation: | Printable |
But first, a video that I found pretty funny, and actually right on target: