REVIEW: FROZEN II

Starring

Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)
Idina Menzel (Enchanted)
Jonathan Groff (American Sniper)
Josh Gad (New Girl)
Sterling K. Brown (BLack Panther)
Evan Rachel Wood (Westworld)
Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)
Martha Plimpton (The Goonies)
Jason Ritter (The East)
Rachel Matthews (Happy Death Day)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Alan Tudyk (Firefly)
Ciaran Hinds (Game of Thrones)
Phil LaMarr (Futurama)
Scott Menville (Teen Titans)
Grey Griffin (The Book of Life)
Kari Wahlgren (DC Super Hero Girls)
Robin Atkin Downes (Babylon 5)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)

 

Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Josh Gad, and Jonathan Groff in Frozen II (2019)King Agnarr of Arendelle tells a story to his young children, Elsa and Anna, that their grandfather, King Runeard, established a treaty with the neighboring tribe of Northuldra by building a dam in their homeland, the Enchanted Forest. However, a fight occurs, resulting in Runeard’s death and enraging the elemental spirits of Earth, Fire, Water, and Air of the forest. The spirits disappear and a wall of mist traps everyone in the Enchanted Forest. Young Agnarr barely escapes due to the help of an unknown savior.Idina Menzel in Frozen II (2019)Three years after her coronation, Elsa celebrates autumn in the kingdom with Anna, Olaf the snowman, Kristoff the ice harvester, and Kristoff’s reindeer Sven. One night, when Elsa hears a mysterious voice calling out to her, she follows it and unintentionally awakens the elemental spirits, which forces everyone in the kingdom to evacuate. Grand Pabbie and the Trolls colony arrive at Arendelle and Pabbie informs that they must set things right by discovering the truth about the kingdom’s past.Idina Menzel in Frozen II (2019)Elsa, Anna, Olaf, Kristoff, and Sven embark to the Enchanted Forest, following the mysterious voice. After the mist parts at Elsa’s touch, the Air spirit, in the form of a tornado, appears and sweeps everyone in its vortex. Elsa stops it, forming a set of ice sculptures. The sisters discover the sculptures are images from their father’s past. They encounter the Northuldra and a troop of Arendellian soldiers who are still in conflict with one another. When the Fire spirit appears, Elsa discovers the spirit to be an agitated magical salamander, and calms it down. Elsa and Anna arrange a truce between the soldiers and the Northuldra after discovering that their mother, Queen Iduna, was a Northuldra who had saved Agnarr, an Arendellian. They later learn the existence of a fifth spirit who will unite people and the magic of nature.Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, and Jonathan Groff in Frozen II (2019)Elsa, Anna and Olaf continue to head north, leaving Kristoff and Sven behind. They find their parents’ wrecked ship and a map with a route to Ahtohallan, a mythical river told by their mother to contain all explanations of the past. Elsa sends Anna and Olaf away to safety and continues alone. She encounters and tames the Nøkk, the Water spirit who guards the sea to Ahtohallan. Reaching Ahtohallan, a glacier, Elsa discovers that the voice calling to her was the memory of young Iduna’s call; that her powers were given to her by nature because of Iduna’s selfless act of saving Agnarr; and that Elsa herself is the fifth spirit.Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel in Frozen II (2019)Elsa then learns that the dam was built as a ruse to reduce the Northuldra’s resources because of King Runeard’s dislike of the tribe’s connection with magic and his intention to incorporate the region into his kingdom. She also learns he was the one who initiated the conflict by killing the unarmed leader of the Northuldra. Elsa sends this information to Anna before becoming frozen due to venturing into the most dangerous part of Ahtohallan. This in turn causes Olaf to fade away. Anna receives Elsa’s message and concludes that the dam must be destroyed for peace to be restored. Anna finds and awakens the gigantic Earth spirits and lures them towards the dam. The giants hurl boulders aimed at Anna which destroy the dam, sending a flood down the fjord to the kingdom. Elsa thaws out and returns to Arendelle, diverting the flood and saving the kingdom.As the mist disappears, Elsa reunites with Anna and revives Olaf. Kristoff asks Anna to marry him and she accepts. Elsa explains that she and Anna are now the bridge between the people and the magical spirits. Anna becomes the Queen of Arendelle while Elsa becomes the protector of the Enchanted Forest, who regularly visits Arendelle as peace has been restored. In a post-credit scene, Olaf visits Elsa’s ice palace and recounts the events he experienced to Marshmallow and the SnowgiesKristen Bell and Idina Menzel in Frozen II (2019)Compared to the first film, Frozen 2 does have a more complicated plot and, maybe, hard to digest for young children. Not only that, the nuances throughout the film are also darker than the first. However, Frozen 2 still deserves to be called a very neat film, especially visually. Makes you curious? You have to watch it so that all your questions are answered …

REVIEW: OLAF’S FROZEN ADVENTURE

Starring

Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)
Idina Menzel (Enchanted)
Jonathan Groff (American Sniper)
Josh Gad (Little Monsters)
John De Lancie (Star Trek: TNG)
Abraham Benrubi (BuffY: TVS)
Sarah Chalke (Paradise PD)
Bridget Hoffman (Hercules: TLJ)
Scott Menville (Teen Titans)

Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Josh Gad, and Jonathan Groff in Olaf's Frozen Adventure (2017)It is the first Christmas season since the gates reopened and Anna and Elsa host a celebration for all of Arendelle. When the townspeople unexpectedly leave early to enjoy their individual holiday traditions, the sisters realize they have no family traditions of their own. Elsa laments the fact that because she had isolated herself most of her life, she and Anna were unable to spend time with each other. Olaf decides to look for traditions with Sven’s help.Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel in Olaf's Frozen Adventure (2017)Going through the town, Olaf encounters various family traditions relating to Christmas, Hanukkah and Winter solstice. After a visit to Oaken, Olaf, Sven and their sleigh full of traditions travel through the snowy tundra only for a piece of coal (from a portable sauna that Oaken had given them) to set the sleigh on fire. They slide down a hill and Olaf and Sven end up separated by a chasm. With only a fruit cake, Olaf attempts to travel through the woods and is attacked by wolves.Josh Gad in Olaf's Frozen Adventure (2017)Meanwhile, Anna and Elsa discover some forgotten items in their attic. Sven returns to Kristoff and informs him (in vain), Anna, and Elsa of Olaf’s plight. They gather the residents of Arendelle to go look for Olaf. Elsewhere, Olaf manages to escape the wolves, but loses the fruit cake to a hawk and gives up by a tree not too far from the kingdom. Anna and Elsa find Olaf and cheer him up by revealing that they do have a tradition: Himself. After Elsa had shut herself away, Anna began annually sliding cards and dolls of Olaf under her door. As they all celebrate the holidays, the hawk drops the fruit cake on Olaf. Upon getting the fruit cake back, Olaf declares it “A Christmas miracle!”Josh Gad in Olaf's Frozen Adventure (2017)It’s relevant that the holiday brings up some old wounds that haven’t all healed. Anna and Elsa reunited in Frozen but they’ve still missed out on a lot of time together. This is a nice way to acknowledge there’s still room for more healing.

REVIEW: FROZEN FEVER

CAST (VOICES)
Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)
Idina Menzel (Enchanted)
Jonathan Groff (American Sniper)
Josh Gad (New Girl)
Santino Fontana (Sisters)

It’s Anna’s birthday and Elsa is determined to make it a perfect day in order to make up for all of the birthdays she’s missed in the past. While she takes her sister on a treasure hunt for presents around town (bumping into some familiar faces), Kristoff is left in charge of guarding the decorations.

All seems well, until Elsa’s cold starts to cause havoc; let’s just say that when a Snow Queen sneezes, there’s a high chance that’s she’ll end up polluting the area with extremely hyperactive “snow babies”. Will the day be ruined, or will Kristoff and Olaf manage to keep them in tow?  Frozen Fever is colourful and fun, packed with stunning animation and humour to keep both children and adults intrigued. It offers numerous nods towards the original movie.

REVIEW: FROZEN

CAST (VOICES)
Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)
Idina Menzel (Enchanted)
Jonathan Groff (American Sniper)
Josh Gad (New Girl)
Santino Fontana (Sisters)
Alan Tudyk (Firefly)
Ciaran Hinds (Game of Thrones)
Robert Pine (Red Eye)
Maurice LaMarche (Futurama)
Brdiget Hoffman (Hercules: TLJ)
Scott Menville (Teen Titans)
Courtney Peldon (Out on a Limb)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
 Elsa, Princess of Arendelle, possesses cryokinetic powers, with which she is able to produce or manipulate ice, frost and snow at will. One night while playing, she accidentally injures her younger sister, Anna. Their shocked parents, the king and queen, seek help from the troll king, who heals Anna and removes her memories of Elsa’s magic. The royal couple isolate the sisters in the castle until Elsa learns to control her magical powers. Afraid of hurting Anna again, and with her ability to control her powers deteriorating, Elsa spends most of her time alone in her room, refusing even to speak to Anna and a rift develops between the sisters as they grow up. When the girls are teenagers, their parents die at sea during a storm.
When Elsa comes of age, the kingdom prepares for her coronation. Among the guests is the Duke of Weselton, who seeks to exploit Arendelle for profit. Excited to be allowed out of the castle again, Princess Anna explores the town and meets Prince Hans of the Southern Isles; the two quickly develop a mutual attraction. Despite Elsa’s fears, her coronation takes place without incident. During the reception, Hans proposes to Anna, who hastily accepts. However, Elsa refuses to grant her blessing and forbids their sudden marriage. The sisters argue, culminating in the exposure of Elsa’s abilities in an emotional outburst.
Panicking, Elsa flees the castle, while inadvertently unleashing an eternal winter on the kingdom. High in the nearby mountains, she abandons her restraint, vowing to never return and building herself a solitary ice palace. Meanwhile, Anna leaves Hans in charge of Arendelle and sets out in search of her sister, determined to return her to Arendelle, end the winter and mend their relationship. While obtaining supplies, Anna meets an iceman named Kristoff and his reindeer, Sven, and convinces Kristoff to guide her up the North Mountain. On their journey, the group encounters Olaf, Anna and Elsa’s childhood snowman whom the latter recreated and unknowingly brought to life, who leads them to Elsa’s hideaway.
Anna and Elsa reunite, but Elsa still fears hurting her sister. When Anna insists that Elsa return, she becomes agitated and her powers lash out, accidentally striking Anna in the heart. Horrified, Elsa forces Anna, Kristoff and Olaf to leave by creating a giant snow creature named Marshmallow that chases them away from her palace. As they flee, Kristoff notices Anna’s hair turning white and deduces that something is very wrong. He seeks help from the trolls, his adoptive family, who explain that Anna’s heart has been frozen by Elsa. Unless it can be thawed by an “act of true love”, she will become frozen solid forever. Believing that only Hans can save her with a true love’s kiss, Kristoff races back with her to Arendelle. Meanwhile, Hans, who is leading a search for Anna, reaches Elsa’s palace. In the ensuing battle against the duke’s men, Elsa is knocked unconscious by a falling chandelier and imprisoned in Arendelle. There, Hans pleads with her to undo the winter, but Elsa confesses that she has no idea how. When Anna reunites with Hans and begs him to kiss her to break the curse, Hans refuses and reveals that his true intention in marrying her is to seize control of Arendelle’s throne. Leaving Anna to die, he charges Elsa with treason for her younger sister’s apparent death.
Elsa escapes and heads out into the blizzard on the fjord. Olaf comes across Anna and reveals Kristoff is in love with her; they then escape onto the fjord to find him. Hans confronts Elsa, telling her Anna is dead because of her. In Elsa’s despair, the storm suddenly ceases, giving Kristoff and Anna the chance to locate each other. Nevertheless, Anna, seeing that Hans is about to kill Elsa, throws herself between the two just as she freezes solid, blocking Hans’ attack. As Elsa grieves for her sister, Anna begins to thaw, since her decision to sacrifice herself to save her sister constitutes an “act of true love”. Realizing love is the key to controlling her powers, Elsa reforms by thawing the kingdom and helps Olaf survive in summer. Hans is deported to the Southern Isles to face punishment for his crimes against the royal family of Arendelle, while Elsa cuts off trade with Weselton. The two sisters reconcile and Elsa promises never to shut the castle gates again.
This is really a lovely, enjoyable cartoon. And it’s just that a lovely, enjoyable cartoon. And basically a fairy tale. Frozen turns out to be as spectacular as we wanted it to be.

REVIEW: AMERICAN SNIPER

CAST

Bradley Cooper (Joy)
Sienna Miller (Foxcatcher)
Luke Grimes (All The Boys Love Mandy Lane)
Jake McDorman (Limitless TV)
Cory Hardrict (Crazy/Beautiful)
Navid Negahban (Charlie Wilson’s War)
Keir O’Donnell (Wedding Crashers)
Kyle Gallner (Veronica Mars)
Sam Jaeger (Hart’s War)
Sammy Sheik (Nikita)
Mido Hamada (Homeland)
Eric Close (Dark Skies)
Brian Hallisay (The Client List)
Leonard Roberts (Buffy)
Marnette Patterson (Starship Troopers 3)
Max Charles (The Neighbors)
Jonathan Groff (Frozen)
Owain Yeoman (The Belko Experiment)
Clint Eastwood (The Mule)

Growing up in Texas, Chris Kyle is taught by his father how to shoot a rifle and hunt deer. Years later, Kyle has become a ranch hand and rodeo cowboy, and returns home early, to find his girlfriend in bed with another man. After telling her to leave, he is mulling it over with his brother when he sees news coverage of the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings and decides to enlist in the Navy. He qualifies for special training and becomes a U.S. Navy SEALs sniper.Kyle meets Taya Studebaker at a bar, and the two soon marry. He is sent to Iraq after the September 11 attacks. His first kills are a woman and boy who attacked U.S. Marines with a Russian made RKG-3 anti-tank grenade. Kyle is visibly upset by the experience but later earns the nickname “Legend” for his many kills. Assigned to hunt for the al-Qaeda leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Kyle interrogates a family whose father offers to lead the SEALs to “The Butcher”, al-Zarqawi’s second-in-command. The plan goes awry when The Butcher captures the father and his son, killing them while Kyle is pinned down by a sniper using a Romanian PSL sniper rifle. This sniper goes by the name Mustafa and is an Olympic Games medalist from Syria. Meanwhile, the insurgents issue a bounty on Kyle.Kyle returns home to his wife and the birth of his son. He is distracted by memories of his war experiences and by Taya’s concern for them as a couple – she wishes he would focus on his home and family.Kyle leaves for a second tour and is promoted to Chief Petty Officer. Involved in a shootout with The Butcher, he helps in killing him. When he returns home to a newborn daughter, Kyle becomes increasingly distant from his family. On Kyle’s third tour, Mustafa seriously injures a unit member, Ryan “Biggles” Job, and the unit is evacuated back to base. When they decide to return to the field and continue the mission, another SEAL, Marc Lee, is killed by gunfire.Guilt compels Kyle to undertake a fourth tour, and Taya tells him that she may not be there when he returns. Back in Iraq, Kyle is assigned to kill Mustafa, who has been sniping U.S. Army combat engineers building a barricade. Kyle’s sniper team is placed on a rooftop inside enemy territory. Kyle spots Mustafa and takes him out with a risky long distance shot at 2,100 yards (1,920 m), but this exposes his team’s position to numerous armed insurgents. In the midst of the firefight, and low on ammunition, Kyle tearfully calls Taya and tells her he is ready to come home. A sandstorm provides cover for a chaotic escape in which Kyle is injured and almost left behind.After Kyle gets back, on edge and unable to adjust fully to civilian life, he is asked by a Veterans Affairs psychiatrist if he is haunted by all the things he did in war. When he replies that it is “all the guys he couldn’t save” that haunt him, the psychiatrist encourages him to help severely wounded veterans in the VA hospital. After that Kyle gradually begins to adjust to home life. Years later, on February 2, 2013, Kyle says goodbye to his wife and family as he leaves in good spirits to spend time with a veteran at a shooting range. An on-screen subtitle reveals: “Chris Kyle was killed that day by a veteran he was trying to help”, followed by archive footage of crowds standing along the highway for his funeral procession. More are shown attending his memorial service.This film, contrary to some reviews, does not glorify war nor killing. It doesn’t hide the horrors of war, and certainly doesn’t romanticize it, nor the toll it takes on the man and his life, his relationship with the civil world. It is brutal and ugly, because that’s what war is. Something one forgets about, the reality of it, the real men who fight for everyone’s safety and liberty. Bradley Cooper is remarkable in his portray of Chris Kyle, especially the way he holds his jaws, mouth and lips.