Tangled 3D Directed by: Nathan Greno, Byron Howard Cast: Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, Donna Murphy Running Time: 1 hr 32 mins Rating: PG Release Date: November 24, 2010
PLOT: A retelling of the classic tale of Rapunzel. Flynn Rider (Levi) is a thief who stumbles upon the long-haired beauty locked away in a castle, and they strike a deal that will change both of their lives.
WHO'S IT FOR? You've got to love a gold old song and dance. In tone, a lot of the music sounds like a poor man's "Les Misérables."
EXPECTATIONS: Disney computer animated films without the help of Pixar haven't been huge hits. I liked their latest "The Princess and the Frog" but that was hand drawn.
Mandy Moore as Rapunzel (voice): She's ambition and fearful. Pretty much like a girl about to go away from college. Rapunzel fills up her day with plenty to do. She bakes, reads, paints and a million different other things. They really missed the boat here. While the concept of "dreaming of being more" is great, they didn't do enough with the fish out of water concept. She grew up in a tower, isolated from society. Why give her an understanding of the outside world? With that being said, Moore nails the sweetness. You constantly root for our heroine and can't help but be charmed. Score: 7
Zachary Levi as Flynn Ryder (voice): His "smolder" look isn't the funniest moment of the film. In fact, it's not even close. Other than that, he's a great counter-part to Rapunzel. Flynn is a conman and thief. When he falls on his face or suddenly has a change of heart and wants to be better, the film works quite well. Score: 7
Donna Murphy as Mother Gothel (voice): Gothel really comes off more as a bitch than an evil witch. She controls Rapunzel and locks her away in their tower in order to stay young. While that makes sense, what doesn't is that she's constantly dismissive and insulting toward her "daughter." This character will play extremely well with the "Real Housewives" crowd. Yes, that's a back-handed compliment. Gothel doesn't stand a chance of becoming an iconic Disney villain unless the Disney marketing machine decides it must happen. Score: 5
Rest of the Cast: Maximus the horse is fantastic, especially when he takes on the characteristics of a dog searching for his prey. Rapunzel has a chameleon who keeps her company. It's not as cute and entertaining as the horse, but it's fine. And by the way, this is a world where the animals and people interact like they are all humans except for the talking. Score: 7
TALKING: It's a slow start mainly because of the back and forth between Rapunzel and Gothel. Once we finally get to Rapunzel and Flynn, the film and dialogue pick up pace. Still, the comedy normally comes from the physical and not the talking. Score: 6
SIGHTS: These characters don't have the warmth of the hand drawn ones or the extreme detail as Pixar characters. We're stuck in the middle, which is OK, but it takes a while to appreciate them. I saw Tangled 3D but I would say go ahead and save the money and don't bother with the glasses or the extra fee. Score: 7
SOUNDS: "I've got a dream" is the only song I will be able to remember. I appreciate it even if it's grammatically incorrect. It's fast and fun. It reminds me of "Gaston" from Beauty and the Beast. "Mother Knows Best" sounds like a bad version of "Keeper of the House." The others won't be classics, unless the Disney marketing machine decides it must happen. Score: 6
BEST SCENE: Flynn takes Rapunzel into a bar to try and scare her, but it backfires on him. That's where the song "I've got a dream" comes into play. The action sequence that follows is a close second.
ENDING: Wait, really? I think this is one of the more surprising endings that Disney has had. It's like Superman without the cape, right? I'm not saying it's not "happily ever after," it's just different than I would have guessed.
QUESTIONS: My "ending" section has already stated my questions.
REWATCHABILITY: I'll skip the first 30 minutes, but as soon as Flynn and Rapunzel meet, I could happily sit through this animated tale again.
Normally, after 30 minutes you know. You know? That's what I thought with Tangled. The first part is boring. Plain and simple.
"I've got a dream" ... It's not Obama-sized inspiration, but it is a game changer. First that song in a bar, with a cast of misfits, then an action-sequence involving a dam, and suddenly I'm having a really good time. Also, since I brought up the dam, let's talk about that for a second. Aren't dams just the perfect thing to create distant between you and your enemies? The Fugitive knew this and so does Tangled.
Look, I know this film could have done more. At one point Flynn and Maximus fall to their death off a cliff, only to be totally fine. And somehow Mother Gothel knows what magical song lyrics must be song in order for the magic to happen. The fish out of water concept should have been the driving force with Rapunzel encountering dancing, horses, dresses ... everything for the first time. They do miss that, and I only loved one song. With that said, when your little kid begs (Disney marketing machine) to go see Tangled at least you can believe you'll have some fun too.
FINAL SCORE: 7/10