Saying Goodbye To The Wizard School

One of the strangest things in the world in the past few years is that the writer of probably the most influential fantasy books of this century has revealed herself to be a huge anti Trans bigot, and WON’T SHUT UP ABOUT IT.

As a result the nerd world is split in an odd schism of, “people who have decided to excise the Wizard Lady” from their eco system entirely and “people who have decided it’s OK and are ignoring it,” and in the middle all the “people who are trying to square the circle of how these books shaped their lives, work and taste while also not supporting the Wizard Lady.”

I’m somewhere in the middle though my thought process is more along the lines of a few years ago when I reread those Wizard School books and realized, this was a story I was ready to put away for a good long time. I’ve always considered it lower on my list that others, and recently decided I wanted to grapple with WHY.

I was 12 when The Socrcerer’s Stone first crossed my path, I grew up with the books just like every nerd my age.

And I realized what it was, when reading a retrospective of The Lord Of The Rings movies earlier this week. (Thanks The AV Club, for the thought!) Wizard School was not the first story for me, as it was for so many other people I know. By the time I was sorted, I’d already Chronicled the rise and fall of Narnia, gone from The Shire to the Lone Mountain and back again, and of course, claimed my path as a Jedi, like my father before me. (Not to mention the jaunts through Tortall and more realistic stories of young women weathering The Civil War.) It wasn’t that I didn’t love Wizard School, and God knows, I adore a bandwagon, and feeling included, so I was happy to join in the fun with my friends and family.

But when I realized I wasn’t getting anything more out of the story, I folded up my robes, (metaphorically) and went back to the stuff that was feeding me. Star Wars is a never ending well for me. Nearly two years removed, from disappointment, I think I might still have some juice in Westeros. The MCU is a gift that keeps on giving. I’ve yet to not be delighted by something I missed or forgot when I go back to Camp Half-Blood.

But I can’t get too upset at the people trying to figure out where they land on this one, what it means for them and why it’s complicated. Or the people that go back to it over and over again.

The 007 Project: For Your Eyes Only

Previously On The 007 Project: I was getting tired of Roger Moore and his campy shenanigans. Also, in the real world there was an attempted violent coup against the government of the country where I live and I felt a little bit, uh, overwhelmed. Also, I now have two day jobs, so…:I needed a few weeks off to adjust. But I’m back now. I’ve got three movies watched and posts banked. Let’s get started!

Who’s Our Bond?

We’re still in Roger Moore land. He’s better here than in Moonraker because this is a better movie than Moonraker. James Bond doesn’t belong in space. His sarcastic charm works well in this one.

What’s The Plot?

Guys this is like the Stefan sketch of Bond movies. “It has everything! Thrilling car and boat chases, a crazed assassin out for James Bond, a Greek heiress bent of revenge, horny teenage figure skaters, Moneypenny’s weird file cabinet mirror!”

Bond first, after visiting Tracy’s grave, is summoned to a helicopter, which it turns out is a trap, from, I assume Blofeld. It’s a bald guy who’s face we don’t see. I miss Blofeld so much, you guys. Anyway, after crashing the helicopter, we get the them and then Bond is called in to see M, who gives him his mission, an archeologist is searching for a bomb in the ocean, or something, whatever, not the point. The point is, the guy was assassinated, and they need to question the guy who did it. So Bond goes to a compound and find the guy, who is then gunned down by, GASP the archeologists daughter, out for revenge.

She assures Bond that if they can find the guy who PAID the assasin, they’ll find the truth about her father’s work. Also, she really really wants revenge. Anyway, they go to Greece and they do some chases and they scuba dive, and there’s also an alpine ski chase at one point, because this whole movie is basically a greatest hits montage.

Eventually, Bond and Melina (Said vengeful daughter) head to a compound to find the real killer and find the information her father was looking for. (I missed some of the particulars, I was distracted by Melina’s cross bow) and the general quality of the flick.

Anyway, after they win they have sex on a boat. And Bond gets a call from Maggie Thatcher which is hilarious.

Tell Me About The Girl

Carole Bouquet plays Melina, who goes around trying to track down the lowlifes who killed her family and murdering them with a crossbow, so she’s basically Helena Bertinelli and I am A OK with that. She’s also immediately into Bond which is fun.

While tracking down information in Switzerland, Bond also encounted Bibi Dahl, an American figure skater who is super horny and definitely wants him. She’s also clearly a teenager and he turns her down. How very evolved of him. She’s played by Linn-Holly Johnson and she’s super annoying.

The final of the three ladies in this one is Countess Lisl Von Styth who is not actually a countess but a normal British girl disguising herself as one. She’s great. I enjoyed her, she’s the one who has sex with Bond and then dies, which we haven’t seen in a few films!

The Song is The Thing

I enjoyed the song, “For Your Eyes Only” performed by Sheena Easton. Bond Themes have moved into the 80s now and it’s very obvious. But this one is at least fun.

Overall Thoughts

I was happy to see the back to basics of this one, I enjoyed Melina and Moore seemed a better dialed in. But in a lot of ways it reminded me of Spectre which I described as, “sure is a Bond movie” it checks all the boxes but doesn’t really do any of the stuff it’s doing spectacularly.

Next week we get into the terribly named but actually awesome Octopussy.

Fangirl Loves Star Wars: The Mandalorian: “Chapter 15: The Believer”

There’s a lot going on here, but I’m gonna start with this, Bill Burr is excellent in this episode and I continue to be blown away by the level of the incredible supporting cast on this show. They jump over the extremely high bars they set for themselves.

While our appreciation of Burr did lead to some friction in the group text this week, (Jess continued to type, “GO SOX!” at every possible instance. She is from Rhode Island and must be forgiven, and I responded by saying, “I love Bill Burr, but I SPIT ON THE SOX!”) Anyway, let’s get to the episode, which was very cool.

Cara Dune (Obligatory Fuck Gina Carano!), Fennec, Boba and Mando go to a prison planet to recruit Mayfeld (Burr) to their opperation to track down Moff Gideon and free poor little Grogu from his nefarious clutches. Mayfeld is a delightful breath of sarcastic human fresh air in our steely group of outsides and I really can’t express deeply enough how much I really like the work Burr is doing here. They head to Morak (we as a group watch with Subtitles so I knew they said “Morak” not “Morag” which is where the Power Stone was hidden in the MCU in Guardians of The Galaxy but I made the joke anyway.) and discover that an Imperial remnant is mining an explosive substance there to mount an attack, much like Operation Cinder (from Star Wars: Battlefront) where they burned up a whole planet and killed a bunch of Storm Troopers to boot.

Mayfeld is uh, not thrilled about this, but manages to keep his cool while Mando goes to a transmitter to get the info he needs on Grogu. He also takes off his helmet for a good 15 minutes! He looks terribly uncomfortable but I am always happy to see Pedro Pascal’s beautiful face and the fact that he’s willing to bend the code for his magic baby son is huge character growth. While discussing the facility and Operation Cinder with the man who it turns out was Mayfeld’s superior, (in a tour de force scene from Burr) he turns his blaster on the facility which the gang then blows up.

After they escape, Cara and Mando agree to report Mayfeld dead so he doesn’t have to go to prison. I hope the next time we see him, he’s found his way home to Space Boston. Mando does his version of the Taken call and tells Moff Gideon that as long as he’s holding Grogu there is no safe place for him in the Galaxy, he will be found.

We also learned that Storm Troopers have to fill our TPS reports and this makes the most sense. Of course Innitech and The Empire are the same level of bureaucratic evil.

Anyway, if you could come in on Saturday, that would be GREEAAATTT!

The 007 Project: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service

Previously On The 007 Project: I realized how closely Austin Powers really only parodies two specific Bond movies, Sean Connery passed away right when I was wrapping up his tenure on this project.

Who Is Our Bond?

This is George Lazenby’s only outing as 007. He was an Australian model, this was his first acting job, and I can only think he was hired because he vaguely resembles a young Sean Connery. While charming in a “can’t quite put your finger on it” way, he seems to just be going with James Bond rather than digging into the character at all. I will, however, later, get into why this works in this particular movie.

What’s The Plot?

SPECTRE continues to wreak havoc in the NATO countries and Bond is no closer to finding Blofeld than he was at the end of You Only Live Twice and as such, M takes him off the case officially, but tells him he’s welcome to do whatever on his own time. The other thing that’s going on here is that Bond has met the enigmatic and lovely Teresa “Tracy” De Vicenzo, a young widowed countess and they fall almost instantly in love. (Her dad also really loves James, so that’s nice)

Eventually, Bond heads to Switzerland where he encounters a disguised Blofeld, who has gathered a group of lost upperclass young women, who he is going to brainwash and send home with a virus to kill large portions of their population. Bond stops the plot, there’s some cool chase scenes on skis, and he goes home a marries Tracy, but, on their way to their honeymoon, Blofeld shoots her in the head. Roll credits.

I’m Adressing The Problematic

With the exception of the ethnic stereotypes of the Blofeld kidnapped girls, and that Bond gets in there by pretending to be gay, this is a refreshingly un-problematic Bond flick. Hooray!

Tell Me About The Girl

Let’s talk about Tracy! First and foremost she’s played by the legendary and incredible Diana Rigg, (RIP) so there’s just a level of skill and charm to her that’s lacking in some of the previous Bond girls, many of whom didn’t speak English or were early in their acting careers. Tracy and Bond meet while she’s trying to kill herself by walking into the ocean after her Italian Count husband has died and left her alone and bereft. They fall in love and her super posh father suggests they get married.

I mentioned above why having Lazenby was key to this working. I don’t think Connery, even younger, Dr. No aged Connery could have pulled off the Romantic comedy subplot with Tracy. It’s just not really in his wheelhouse, and it would have been way worse, if the older Connery of You Only Live Twice has been romancing the lovely young Rigg. Wouldn’t have worked at all.

Tracy is beautiful, and glamorous and eventually tragic.

Joe’s Bond Car Corner

The Song Is The Thing

Overall Thoughts

I genuinely enjoyed this outing almost entirely because it’s pretty silly but also on a smaller scale than Thunderball and You Only Live Twice which was a great deal of fun.

Next week! Connery is back one last time for Diamonds Are Forever.

The 007 Project: You Only Live Twice

Previously On The 007 Projet: I was going through an existential crisis while reviewing Thunderball, but I’m feeling much better now. (As of this writing still waiting on those fine fine Nevadans, but the good people of Georgia and Pennsylvania have decided to chip in too!) Also Thunderball has SCUBA fighting.

Who’s Our Bond?

Still Connery despite my foggy thoughts about it last time. He does take On His Majesty’s Secret Service off. He’s really phoning it in this time around, although since this movie is 90% puns, (it was written by Roald Dhal! INSANITY!) that’s mostly fine. I’ve been less impressed with Connery the last two outings than I was in those first three movies. I do think this started a fantastic tradition though.

What’s The Plot

007 gets involved in the space race! (KINDA)

A NASA probe is shot down and naturally, the US thinks it’s the Russians. (A reasonable supposition in 1968) The Russians deny it and the Brits do think all this space business is a bit silly, but note the evidence does point to Russia’s innocence. They insist that they are sending their top man to look into it.

After faking his death and then heading to Japan, James Bond, with the help of the beautiful Aki and the head of Japanese Secret Service Tiger Tanaka, learns that it is in fact SPECTRE behind the downed space crafts. At his Volcano lair, Blofeld is furious with his underlings who didn’t actually kill Bond and feeds them to pirhanas. Bond foils the plan just in time, thought Aki winds up poisoned and Bond winds up fake married to the lovely Kissy Suzuki, a circumstance WE WILL GET TO BELOW.

The Blofeld reveal totally rules and I generally really like Aki.

I’m Addressing The Problematic

I was floating along happily surprised by how NOT totally orientalist the movie was, secret ninja schools are a little bit silly, but hardly offensive, and then Tenaka declared that Bond must “Become a Japanes!” I thought, “Oh lord I hope he means figuratively.”

NOPE.

Sean Connery spends a good 20 minutes of the film in yellowface for no particular reason. Is no good, very bad, don’t do it.

Tell Me About The Girl

Aki rules. I was so bummed when she died. She’s played by Akiko Wakabayashi. I like her a lot. She ahs great hair and a cool car and she’s all into bantering with Bond.

Kissy rules a little less but she’s still pretty great and wears a fun bikini. She’ splayed by Mei Hama.

Joe’s Bond Car Corner

Bond doesn’t drive in this one! But Aki does!

The Song Is the Thing

“You Only Live Twice” is one of my favorite Bond themes and is performed by Nancy Sinatra (COOL). Taken on it’s own the song is a warning to live while you can. Nancy sells it well.

Shaggadelic Baby!

No outside opinions this time, so I will just point out that this movie and Goldfinger are really the two most straightly parodied by the Austin Powers series. The piranha made me giggle because all I could think of were the “friggin sharks, with friggin laser beams, on their friggin heads.”

Also because they are just very silly!

Overall Thoughts

While fun and campy I don’t know that I will ever go back to this, despite Blofeld being the best and Aki being great. Connery’s apathy is too hard to overcome.

Next week, we really actually do the Lazenby things. Woo!

The Weird Bits That Made Me: The Rocketeer

Welcome To: The Weird Bits That Made Me, an expoloration of the idiosyncratic or obscure pop culture that I was into as a kid. I lived a strange suburban existence, with relatively young and somewhat hip parents and there were some real gems in the offbeat cultural stuff they exposed us to as kids. It hought it would be fun to once a week explore some of that

I’m not the only nerd of a certain age to talk about how the notorious Disney produced flop The Rocketeer, made in 1991 by director Joe Johnston, was a big influence on their taste. There are tons of blog posts and think pieces out there about this one. Mostly, because Johnston went back to the well in some major ways when he made Captain America: The First Avenger which I also love.

The Rocketeer tells the story of Cliff Secor (Billy Campbell, adorable) a struggling stunt pilot in 1930’s Los Angeles, who comes across an experimental jet pack, along with his trusty mentor and mechanic Peevy (Alan Arkin! The cast only gets more exciting from here folks). The pack was stolen from Howard Hughes (Terry O’Quinn!) by gangster Joey Valentine (PAUL SORVINO!) who has been employed by matinee idol Neville Sinclair (TIMOTHY DALTON! Who we will be talking about more eventually!) who is actually a Nazi spy. Sinclair becomes interested in Cliff’s girlfriend Jenny, an up and coming actress (Jennifer Connolly at her absolute hottest) and shenanigans ensue.

It’s a great movie. Fun, and funny and grown up without feeling tawdry, with clean exciting practical action and a “Gee Whiz!” energy that never feels corny. Johnston really excels at this, and I’m 1000% convinced that fond memories of this movie got him the Cap job. There are quite a few beats reused. (It ends with a couple of kids running around the airfield pretending to be The Rocketeer, which made me laugh out loud.)

We also watched this movie maybe every weekend growing up. It was my brothers favorite movie ever, and I can honestly say, my absolute love of this movie, is I think a testament to how oddly isolated to my family my childhood was. I spent most of my time with my siblings and cousins, and so we liked all the same things. When I was a teenager and referenced something like The Rocketeer, and no one knew what I was talking about, was the first time I learned that my references were just a little out of step. And when someone did know what I was talking about, I knew they were a friend.

Yesterday afternoon, I attended one of my nerd friends Central Park hang outs, (these have been sanity saving) and I mentioned watching it for this feature and got an explosion of, “I love The Rocketeer” from a few, and then describing the flick, a “that sounds awesome.”

The Rocketeer is a great movie and I hope more people discover and fall in love with it because of Disney +. It was also nice to do a movie after having done music based ones for the past few times. (Most of these are going to be music though, probably)

The 007 Project: Dr. No

Hello everyone! I’ve learned over the past few years that what really helps me keep things going around here is having a watch project. Whether it’s recapping a show as it comes out, or doing a series of movies.

I really enjoyed watching all of those Disney movies, but rather than continue in that vein, I decided to go for something completely different. And that something completely different is watching all of the James Bond movies. In a row. In order. Open minded about who is best. (Though, you know, Connery.)

So, we’re watching The Bonds. We’re starting right here, at the beginning with Dr. No.

I don’t think I’ve watched these early Sean Connery movies since I was much younger and a very different sort of movie watcher. Here was my first thought, in writing this up:

It is amazing how Dr. No manages to set up everything we now expect a Bond movie to do, and still be incredibly grounded as a spy thriller. The large campy set pieces aren’t really there, with the exception of Dr. No’s lair, everything seems pretty real world. And yet, there’s still, well, everything we need to know about James Bond. He has sex with two different ladies, before meeting Honey Ryder, he drinks his martinis, he has his car shipped to Jamaica from England, he meets with M, flirts with Moneypenny, wears the tux, it’s all there.

Who’s Our Bond?

There’s also just, Sean Connery. My God, when he first appeared, I melted into the sofa. That is a sexy man, my friends, and I don’t mind saying it. When the camera focuses in on him at the card table at Le Club de Cercle, I actually took a deep breath and then exhaled. He is attractive. He’s also funny, and charismatic, and delightfully self aware in the role. He made the mold, and no one has really matched him.

What’s The Plot This Time?

A British spy in Jamaica has gone missing, and 007, James Bond, has been sent to find out what happened to the poor fellow. As it turns out, he was onto a mysterious Chinese scientist by the name of Dr. No, who is experimenting with atomic power, while under the banner of the mysterious SPECTRE. Bond thwarts him, HOORAY!

I’m Adressing The Problematic

Look, we’re doing Bond. There is sexism, there is racism, there is glorification of the waning British Empire throughout this series. Dr. No has got all of that. The women, all four of them, are completely disposable. The characters of color are stereotypical and silly. Dr. No is supposed to be half Chinese, but is played by the white, Julian Wiseman (who’s great, but you know, YIKES).

Tell Me About The Girl

Honey Ryder is played by Ursula Andress and she is very beautiful. She doesn’t appear until the last half hour of the movie but she has an iconic entrance in her gorgeous white bikini with a belt and it is completely and utterly fabulous. This bikini rules so much that last week it sold at auction for $500,000. I’m talking about the bikini and not the character because Honey is not really a character, she just kind of shows up and is around for about five scenes and then Bond kisses her on a boat and the movie ends.

It sucks.

Joe’s Bond Car Corner

Part of the fun of this series is that my brother-in-law loves the Bond movies, and love cars, so he agreed to do a quick write up of James Bond’s car in each movie. Hooray! Here’s what Joe has to say about The Sunbeam II, which I noted to him, I observed was blue!

  • You’re right – it was a 1962 Sunbeam Alpine Series II in Lake Blue 
  • Being the first Bond film, they did not have the money nor the endorsements from large car manufacturers (Aston Martin), this car was actually borrowed from a local Jamaican resident since it was one of the only viable sports cars they could find on the island.
  • The Sunbeam name dates back to 1888 when it was registered by John Marsten, a bicycle manufacturer.  They began manufacturing cars in 1901. 
  • Sunbeam was a prestigious name due to their engine manufacturing.  They produced aero engines for planes in WWI, then focused on Grand Prix Racing and land speed records post war
  • Engine for the 1962 Alpine Series II: 80 horsepower, 97 MPH top speed.  Not so sporty for Bond compared to a 1962 Corvette, 150 horsepower, 108MPH top speed. 
  • Bond’s Alpine included optional upgrades such as wire spoke wheels and white wall tires (SO necessary for the early 60’s look)
  • The Alpine is named after the Alpine Rally (Coupe des Alpes) which was one of the most prestigious races in the world during the 50s.
  • Base price was about $2,500.  Mint condition these days they go for $10,000 tops.
  • About 19,000 Sunbeam Alpine Series II were made.  Not many around these days, if they are they are in bad shape and you can get them for around $3,000 as a project car.  
  • The Apline I was not very successful, so Sunbeam put a bigger engine in it, and made the car a bit bigger to attract the American Market.  It was considered moderately successful.
  • If Bond had waited 2 more years for the Alpine to be upgraded to the Sunbeam Tiger, he could’ve been riding around with a Ford V8 (twice as powerful) that was designed by the legend Carol Shelby. (A Note From Reenie: I know who Carol Shelby is because Matt Damon plays him in the very good movie Ford VS Ferrari)

Overall Thoughts

Not going to lie you guys, I got worried watching this movie. “Is this going to be harder than I thought? Watching all these movies?” It’s not a super fun watch. While Dr. No shines in moments, as a film it’s slow and meandering and a little more self serious than I expected, I didn’t actually like it much.

Next week we press on to From Russia With Love. And SPOILER! I like it a whole lot more.

Movie Reviews: Enola Holmes

Good lord, it really is hard to express how much “charming,” is one of the most important elements of any movie for me these days. A really and truly, I can think of no better term to describe Enola Holmes, the new Netflix movie starring Millie Bobbie Brown as Sherlock Holmes’s much younger sister, than charming.

Brown is adorable as the precocious sixteen year old Enola, who wakes up on her sixteenth birthday to find her eccentric mother, Eudoria (a delightful Helena Bonham Carter), vanished. In the wake of this disappearance, Enola’s brothers Mycroft (Sam Claflin) and Sherlock (Henry Cavill) show up and cluck disapprovingly at their wild independent sister.

After Sherlock blows off searching for Mom (NIIICCCEEE) and Mycroft declares they’re shipping Enola off to finishing school, Enola runs away, and gets caught up in a mystery involving the young Lord Tewkesbury, who’s family is trying to kill him to keep him from voting for reform in The House Of Lords. He’s also adorable (And played by Louis Partridge, who I have never heard of but is good here) and Enola spends most of the movie denying her very obvious crush on him.

After solving that problem, Enola does find her mother, gets some money and sets up in a boarding house, despite Sherlock now offering to take her in and train her as a detective.

Millie Bobbie Brown is great in this movie. I’ve never not liked her, though, so there’s that. But she suits Enola very well, seeming both stunningly young and vulnerable and yet wise beyond her years. I’m excited to see more this character, as the movie is adapted from a series of books, of which there are five. More Enola Holmes please, Netflix. (Also, Millie Bobbie Brown and her mother produced the movie, which I said, was very Olsen of her.) (Mary Kate and Ashley, not Elisabeth.)

Magical Movies Tour: Big Hero Six

It’s funny what watching these movies all in a row have done for thinking about the context of what the studio was trying to do with the movies as the came out. If Frozen is the old formula coming back stronger than every, I feel like Big Hero Six is something they’d tried to get traction on ten years before finally working.

That is, if Frozen is the musical beginning of the Disney Renaissance coming back, Big Hero Six is the stuff thank tanked it finally coming back. It’s of a piece with Atlantis and Treasure Planet and even Meet The Robinsons in a way. It’s really interesting.

I also happen to just really love it. It’s a fun superhero origin, completely reinterpreting an obscure, and not particularly popular comic story line, and provide a diverse and fun team.

I’m also a big fan of stories where love besides romantic love is given weight, and we’re in the middle of three movies that highlight that very much. (Frozen, Big Hero Six and Zootopia) It’s a pretty cool trend they went for there. I wouldn’t mind another love story though, because I’m a sucker.

I feel like I’m being vague in talking about Big Hero Six itself, and it might be because it just didn’t make much of an impression on this particular watch. Perhaps it’s because I spent so much of the past six months in Superhero stuff. (Rewatching the Arrowverse, and lately diving back into Young Justice.) Big Hero Six does a great job with telling a straightforward super hero story, and also has a big cuddly robot.

I’m a fan, but there’s not a whole lot to dissect here. (also we’ve now hit the point where I was watching and reviewing these movies in the theater, crazy!) It’s a well made, fun bit of action movie, with a sweet heart and some killer voice acting. I really enjoyed it.

Next week we want to try everything, with Zootopia.

Magical Movies Tour: Frozen

There have been so many inches of digital ink already handed over to why Frozen managed to become a phenomenon, but why not spend a few more?

For my money it’s an odd combination of things, but most especially, it is a case of the formula clicking back into place. Adaptation of a fairy tale? CHECK. Songs Written By A Top Tier Broadway Talent that Broadway isn’t exactly sure what to do with? CHECK. Innovating and exciting animation sequences? CHECK. Memorable characters voiced by top tier talent? CHECKARONI!

Frozen managed to scratch an itch that a lot of people, especially the parents of young girls, and those young girls themselves, didn’t realize they had. I also happen to love it because it’s message of finding your place in the mess and sisterly love came around at a time that I really needed both of those things. Also it was the year I fell back in love with Disney World, so that didn’t hurt.

My own experience is so marginal though, because this movie belongs so thoroughly to the kids that fell in love with it on sight, the way people my age did with The Little Mermaid. There’s just something endearingly special about it, the kind of alchemy of right place and time that really creates something magical and special and of it’s moment.

I mean, it also doesn’t hurt to have a knock down, drag out show stopping musical number performed by a world class, unique talent. I am of course speaking of Jonathan Groff’s timeless rendition of “Reindeers Are Better Than People.”

I’m kidding, obviously, “Let It Go,” is an exceptional musical theater song performed by one of the all time greats, Idina Menzel. I’ve always been impressed by the way Robert and Kristen Lopez utilized her voice in the song, somehow managing to take the incredible range she showed in “Defying Gravity,” and the attitude in “Take Me Or Leave Me,” to create a signature song worthy of the title.

Frozen is just really special, it’s hard to quantify. It isn’t exactly perfect, the story is clumsy and jumps around. Anna and Elsa as duel protagonists are underserved and undeveloped a little bit. The Hans twist seems to come out of nowhere. What’s the deal with the trolls? And Olaf is juuuussst over the line into annoying. But it as shaggy as it all is, it manages to hold together and be just wonderful.

Up next, let me know if you’re satisfied with your care, when we talk about Big Hero 6.