Thursday, November 28, 2013


Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

On the long list of that for which I’m thankful—down the list a ways, I admit—is the good fortune to have grown up with Peabody’s Improbable History, one of the features on the marvelous Bullwinkle shows. Mr. Peabody remains one of my role models (unattainable, of course); a tiny Peabody stands on my desk staring at me as I type these words. How well the feature version of Mr. Peabody & Sherman, due out next year, will live up to the great original cartoons remains to be seen…

Now in theaters is Disney’s animated musical Frozen, “inspired” by Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen. It’s an origin story for Andersen’s title character, a young sovereign under a magical curse who can freeze things with her hands . It has an ice palace, trolls, fiords and other Norwegian motifs, but the story here concerns the tempestuous relationship between the Queen, Elsa, and her lonely, love-hungry younger sister Anna.

The filmmakers seem to be trying for a sort of junior league Wicked, however the score isn’t as memorable as some of the other Disney musicals. But it is, at least, superbly sung, especially by Wicked’s great Idina Menzel, as Elsa.

Its real crowd-pleasers, however, are its two sentient snowmen. First there’s sweet-natured Olaf, voiced by Josh Gad, who has the misfortune to crave “warm hugs.” Then there’s…

Monster-of-the-Week: …this week’s honoree, a pretty cool snow giant named "Marshmallow"...

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