By now you’ve probably seen Frozen, and if you work with children in any capacity it is probably safe to say you’ve seen Frozen upwards of half a dozen times. I’ve talked about “Let it Go” and my beliefs on the natural tendency for self destruction but as a single girl in the dating scene I realized there’s another life lesson engrained within the film’s soundtrack. Love is an Open Door offers a unique perspective on love, a perspective that may go largely unnoticed by the film’s target audience (five year olds) but with the critical analysis of the adult eye is quite clear. After finishing Frozen for the third time with one of my favorite little nanny babies, Parker stared up at me her big blue eyes filled with disappointment.
“Doesn’t Hans turn good in the end?” She asked, a bit of desperation in her voice.
“No Parker, he’s mean! Hans just wanted Ana and Elsa’s kingdom” I explained sympathetically. Less than thrilled with my explanation, Parker argued with herself for a few moments before returning to her (apparently) all knowing Frozen-buff babysitter.
“If Hans loved Ana why would he try to mess up her life?” She questioned, the sass apparent. As adults we can accept Hans’ flaws, his villainy but children aren’t used to a less than heroic Prince Charming especially from our good friends at Disney. Princess Ana is so awkwardly adorkable. As the viewer familiarizes him/herself with the protagonist we realize even though Ana is a princess she is just as desperate for love and naive about the world as any other 16 year old girl (Disney or otherwise). Ana daydreams about dances with handsome strangers, long intimate conversations and although not technically divulged in the film potentially the magic of her first kiss. When Ana conveniently stumbles (literally) into Hans her fantasy love story begins to unfold.
Ana reveals the depths of her heart to Hans, eager to find companionship and determined to create a sense of emotional intimacy with her new handsome prince. As Ana divulges her fears, ambitions, and insecurities she gives Hans the ammunition he needs to control her. Her obvious desire to love and be loved makes her crazy! WOMEN OF THE WORLD, I have a public service announcement! Tell your daughters, tell your friends, tell random women you meet in the bathroom, any man who claims early on to “love crazy” is probably slightly sketch. When it seems too good to be true it doesn’t mean you’ve left the confines of real life and stepped into a fairytale, it means you’ve probably got a straight up sociopath on your hands. Normal men don’t profess their undying love for you within hours (or days), normal people don’t search for false connections over fondue, and no one in their right mind no matter how magical of an evening shared prances into an engagement. But 16 year old Ana doesn’t see that.
Princess Ana has her rose colored glasses strapped to her pretty little face and the stage five clinger right in front of her appears distorted. As women seeking love is it too far fetched to assert that we often allow ourselves to see what we want to see rather than the reality of what is actually in front of us. Fitzgerald nailed it when he poetically summarized the feeling “in the end, we were all just humans drunk on the idea that love, only love, could heal our brokenness”. We’re all broken (Ana has been talking to pictures on the castle walls for gods sake)but the myth that finding another person to “complete us”, to “mend us”, to “glue” our fragmented little pieces together…it has to stop. The time spent searching for the perfect person to perfect us can instead be spent picking up the pieces and pulling our own lives together.
The takeaway, these handsome strangers we strut around hoping to stumble into the arms of will tell you anything you want to hear to get what they want whether it’s their own kingdom, sex, a source of expendable income…your soul. We all want true love, and we deserve it! Don’t let this hope evolve into desperation, desperation that blinds you to the danger in front of you. You can finish your own sentences, and for the love of God you can finish your own freaking sandwiches!
What are your take away love lessons from Frozen? Have you ever fallen for the wrong “Prince Charming”?