Music and lyrics by Alan Menken and Glenn Slater, respectively, were clever, funny, warm and sweet. Some sample rhymes – dreamers, femurs; deadly, medley. Help me, how wonderful are those. Each and every song moves characters and story forward and they are well placed in the witty and wild screenplay by Dan Fogelman (based on the fairy tale “Rapunzel” by the Brothers Grimm, of course).
There’s a long list of wonderful people voicing characters from guards to thugs, each character fully delineated and hilarious. As for the main characters:
- Zachari Levi (from “Chuck”) is the voice of the thief, Rider (who looks more like Jake Gyllenhall), and he’s quite charming, smarmy, contrite, sincere, and very funny. He also sings quite sweetly.
- Mandy Moore is Rapunzel, and of course her voice is just right for this blossoming young girl. She’s full of life, exuberance, and joy, whatever her circumstances. And she’s very funny.
- Donna Murpy does a great job as the wicked kidnapping old crone. She’s a hoot, and her singing, of course, scores.
Rapunzel has created wondrous paintings in her tower prison, vibrant, colorful scenes of nature, earth and sky, and most particularly the highly affecting lanterns released from the royal palace every year on the anniversary of Rapunzel’s birth. When she finally gets out of her tower into the world, Rapunzel lives her paintings, in particular those birthday lanterns. The release by the king and queen of the first lantern in memory of their kidnapped daughter is followed from the top of the castle through the streets and plazas and onto the ships at sea. The light is sublime, the colors exultant, the emotional impact extraordinary. Beware, those prone to weeping at sheer, sweet gorgeousness.
“Tangled” just gave so much pleasure I cannot recommend it more heartily. It was directed by Nathan Greno and Byron Howard, but of course this is an animated feature. Art Direction, individual animators, a huge number of people were gathered to put this gorgeous gift together. Apparently this was the most expensive animated film ever made by Disney or anyone else, but it’s so damned delightful, who could complain.
“Tangled” has lots of action, frying pans, slingshot moves with long golden hair, dam busting, and the good guys and bad guys satisfactorily getting their due. Go on, let your hair down.
~ Molly Matera, logging off. I have more movies to see before the Oscars....