From the get-go, Disney seemed to have conspired to turn Tangled into an epic failure. First, they changed the title from Rapunzel to Tangled because Tangled had a hipper sound to it. Then, they went ahead and released a sad, silly trailer that made the film look like a Shrek rip-off filled with facile humor that would be obsolete in two months. Finally, they mangled with the release date to the point that it seemed they were hiding something.
Apparently they were. Tangled is perhaps the studio’s finest movie in almost a decade (not counting Pixar co-productions, of course). They take the tale of long-haired Rapunzel and turn it into a simple fairy tale, without an inkling of the pop culture references and dirty humor animated films have made us used to by now.
The film was made using computer animation that resembles hand drawn art. Obviously inspired by Romantic paintings, the entire film has a dreamlike quality, one that might very well recall what was once Walt Disney’s proudest achievement: Sleeping Beauty.
It’s weird to see that in Tangled, the photorealistic texture of CGI actually helps to make it even more otherworldly and ethereal. It’s a fairy tale imagined by both new and old generations. This is why it’s even more surprising to see that by returning to some of the elements that once made the studio create magic with each new film, Tangled defies modern conventions to prove that they don’t make them like they used to.
The film isn’t only low on gross humor, it’s also high on musical numbers and utter sincerity, two things that seem to be out of place in anything that would appeal to audiences who flock to see movies about violent robots and killer aliens.
The characters might not be entirely memorable, but they are effective and sometimes achieve brilliance (the musical dialogues given to villainous Mother Gothel are subversively dark), and best of all is that the film delivers a lovely message without trying too hard.
On the surface, it’s wonderful to imagine that Disney might eventually return to the glory days of its animation department, but being realistic it’s perhaps better just to enjoy this one for what it is. After all very few movies out there are delivering such great joys while asking for nothing in return.
Tangled is playing now in theaters everywhere in Costa Rica. ONLY dubbed in Spanish.
Movie theaters in San Jose, Costa Rica: Cinemark del Este, Cinemark Escazú, CCM Cinemas San Pedro and Paseo de las Flores, Cinépolis Terramall, Cinépolis Desamparados, NOVA Cinemas