I wasn't going to bother going to see the new Disney cartoon, "The Princess on the Frog," first because Disney's campaign to turn princesses into pure little-girl-crack is tiresome-verging-on-offensive, and second because it looked like a trite and opportunistic way to bring in African-American viewers.
But Salon's Mary Elizabeth Williams has me convinced. This sounds like a damned good movie. Maybe I'll take the kid to see it.
Tiana takes the princess role a step further -- she's not just Disney's first African-American to wear the crown, she's the first one with a regular job. (Unless you count Mulan's gig as a warrior.) She also, like "Ratatouille's" Remy, makes the case for great food as a social leveler and the cornerstone of a good life. Tiana knows that food "brings people together" with more reliable results than even voodoo.
But the strides here aren't just for princesses. Those Charming Guys of bygone days have traditionally been even less interesting than the ladies they rescue. Campos makes his Naveen such a cocky player that he doesn't stop seducing even when he's turned green and asks for just one kiss ... "unless you beg for more." He's a spoiled rich guy who needs to grow up, and the movie is just as much about his journey as it is about Tiana's.
And what a felicitous spot to take that journey. The Crescent City, in all her late 19th-century glory, shines like a jewel here: an enchanted, lively, multicultural town full of bright blossoms and infectious songs. As they say in the movie, "Dreams come true in New Orleans." Randy Newman [ed: ugh], who wrote the score, does a bang-up job of paying tribute to the city's rich musical heritage in a series of colorful, trippy numbers. There's a jazzy Armstrong-like song (featuring a crocodile named Louis), a gospel-tinged showstopper, a zydeco throwdown, and a boogie-woogie paean to the town sung by Dr. John [ed: that's more like it].
"The Princess and the Frog" is Disney royalty
TMZ reports that Miss Cleo is dead at 53. The TV psychic, also known as Youree Harris, was famous for the character’s faux-Jamaican accent and the bizarre Tarot-themed advertising campaigns exhorting Americans to call in for a reading. You couldn’t fool Miss Cleo, went the catchy 90s’ tagline, but the entertainer could not fool the […]
San Diego Comic-Con International has concluded for 2016, but these amazing photos of dedicated cosplayers at the event will live on.
“We ask strangers on the street which celebrities they’ve been told they look like.” Another fun piece from our friend and collaborator Joe Sabia, for Vanity Fair.
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It’s one thing to enjoy dinner at home and a nice glass of Cabernet Sauvignon with your best friend, Netflix, but it’s another thing entirely to make that meal from scratch and get that wine delivered right to your doorstep.But what if we told you there’s a way to make this possible? To keep your social life, […]