Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Frozen Review - SPOILERS!

I, like everyone else in the world with two ears and a heart, love the movie Frozen.  Maria has seen it the most at four times, Mike has seen it once with her and I have seen it twice with her.  She went the first time on a(n) (awesome) field trip.  My neighbor gave us the cd and we listen to the music a lot.  Maria and Veronica's favorite song is Let it Go and it's mine too.  When I first saw it in the theater, I felt like I was seeing a Broadway Show - I thought, 'these are some incredible production values!', ha!

My internet friend Bonnie has written about Frozen as it relates to kids with autism and I can't stop thinking about it and I can't stop CRYING when I sing the song.  So.  This is SPOILERY, if you haven't seen it yet.

The back story is that Elsa is a newly crowned Queen of Arrendelle (sp) and at her coronation party, it comes out that she has this strange and secret power, which is that when she touches things they freeze.  When she and her sister Anna were little, she used to use  her power to make a winter wonderland in their ballroom, but one time she mistakenly shot Anna with some ice and her parents had to take her to see some trolls to warm her up.  But by warming her up and healing her, they had to take her memories of Elsa's power.  Elsa had to stay in her room and they closed the gates to the castle.  This was the parents bright idea, which, whatever, I don't want to say anything too bad about them because of course (Disney) they die early on in the movie.

So Elsa is in her room for years and years and Anna is running around the empty castle and then it's Coronation Day and they open up the gates and Elsa is ... coronated?  Queened?  I don't know, but she has a near miss when she starts to freeze her scepter or whatever she has to hold.  She and Anna have an argument later and Anna takes one of her gloves and boom! she shoots out some ice and the townspeople turn on her and she has to take off to the North Sky Mountain or whatever and she sings this song.  She is realizing how good it is to be free and she sings:

The snow glows white on the mountain tonight
Not a footprint to be seen
A kingdom of isolation,
And it looks like I’m the Queen.

The wind is howling like this swirling storm inside
Couldn’t keep it in, heaven knows I tried

Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know
Well, now they know

Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore
Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door

I don’t care
What they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway

Then, she starts to see the good side of it - now they know!  She doesn't have to conceal it or not feel it anymore, her power, because she is alone and free!  This next line is where I start crying because she looks back at the town and laughs a little as she sings:

It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all

It’s time to see what I can do
To test the limits and break through
No right, no wrong, no rules for me
I’m free

Let it go, let it go
I am one with the wind and sky
Let it go, let it go
You’ll never see me cry

Here I stand
And here I'll stay
Let the storm rage on

It makes me cry because I think about, not just Anthony, but kids with autism and how - well, not Anthony at all, but some kids who have to go to school and 'act normal' or not stim or whatever, how hard it is for them.  We are (?) lucky because we have never been in a situation where someone has said, sure Anthony, come on in to school and learn your reading and writing and arithmetic, just pass for neurotypical because he can't.  It's never been an issue for us.  But the thought of him working so hard all day and then just coming home and, like screaming or hanging upside down or spinning around, because he feels free and like we can appreciate his power which is seen as a curse by other people, well, that is what makes me cry.

I get so annoyed with him.  He is so, so loud.  Some days I think I will seriously LOSE MY MIND if he doesn't SHUT UP.  But if I try and think of him feeling free!  And having some distance and not being afraid! And being one with the wind and sky!, it makes me feel better.  Also it makes me feel sad because I think he is never going to probably sit in a classroom and raise his hand and josh around with friends and - I mean, I hope he will but he probably won't and that has to be okay but sometimes it's still not.  So I am always on the verge of tears, and that's why.

The other part of the story that really gets me right where I live, as it pertains to Anthony, is that Elsa decides that she is going to just live on her own in her (beautiful) ice castle and she won't have to worry about anything.  Because she doesn't know that she froze her whole town and that everyone there is suffering, until her sister comes and tells her so then she whacks her with frozen power AGAIN (if you ask me Elsa should stop GESTURING so much, the dummy) and now she gets her in the heart, which the troll said can't be fixed.  But it can be fixed, with an act of true love, which of course happens and Elsa figures out that true love can save not just Anna but Elsa too and everyone!  True love, she says, of course!  And then I start to think that even though Anthony has this power that no one really appreciates as a power and is in fact kind of a PAIN, the only thing that will save us and him is TRUE LOVE.  Once Elsa realizes it, she uses her power for good and she can control it.  So I think, well, we can just truly love the heck out of Anthony, and not just him but each other, Mike and me and these other kids and then we can use his power - we can let him live in the world and be happy.  And then I cry like this boo hoo hoo hoo HOO!  And this is all while I am singing in the car and Maria always says, what is WRONG with you?  Ha!

Anyway, obviously, I give the movie two big thumbs up and also ten tissues.