Monday, May 24, 2010

The Princess and the Frog: A Critique

Darby was lucky enough to receive “The Princess and the Frog” from her Gran this last weekend. She was so, so excited and wants to watch it every waking hour. I didn’t really know anything about the movie except that it is Disney’s first black princess and that it supposedly is such a breakthrough movie. Have you seen it?

Well, I beg to differ when it comes to the movie breaking through stereotypes. I thought it was a black princess, but it is not. The main character, Tianna, is a lower-class girl working two jobs (for white people) to try and make a better life for herself. Yeah, what a break through. Then, she tries to buy a building, but is denied because she is black (I think; I wasn’t really paying tons of attention at that point because I was cooking dinner). Then, our black heroine is turned into a frog via voo doo black magic. Hmmmm. So, our black “princess” is actually a green frog for almost the entire film. She makes gumbo (Forest Gump, anyone?) and falls in love with her latino frog prince and the two of them dupe a few white bayou yokels and what I’m getting at is that I don’t really see a lot of breaking through. She doesn’t even become a princess until she marries the prince and then a Mammyish character says, “It’s gon’ be good!” Come on people. It is a really great movie and lots of fun to watch, all I’m saying is that it wasn’t the class-crossing event it claimed to be.

That said, Darby loves every bit of it and it is a cute movie with a really dark villain, so be sure to watch it before your small children have the chance. That way you’ll know when to fast-forward through the scary parts!


  1. I love this movie, the music and the charaters, but I have a hard time thinking that little kids are watching the voodoo going on. they could get the wrong idea or just be completely scared to mess with voodoo. If they took it out there would be no movie. so why am i complaining.

  2. Why does the black girl have to get married to become a princess? Can't a black girl just come into money on her own without needing a man? Hasn't Disney ever heard of Oprah? Steadman certainly isn't bringing home the bacon.
    And why is she working for white people? Why isn't she working for Oprah?
    If the prince is latino, maybe they should be practicing Santeria instead of straight-up voodoo. They could pour rotten eggs and vinegar into a boot and conjure up Oprah =)

  3. We saw this and I wasn't crazy about it. Not because I'm racist but because I felt it was really dark ( in a creepy, scarey kinda way, not the black people everywhere way) :). I did like the firefly that's in love with the star and the old lady was adoarble! I felt like they were reaching for something to sing about every two minutes. But yeah, too dark for me and I only let Gannon watch it once.

  4. The baby wasn't in love with it so I didn't buy it. Oh well.

    And I agree that the VooDoo guy is scary! What with his shadow running around and doing bad things. It makes me think of the movies Ghost where those "bad shadows" come and drag you down if you aren't good in life.

    And after a Persian princess, a Native American princes, an Asian Princess how many more barriers are there to be broken? Maybe instead of getting different ethnic princesses they should work on getting the overt racism out of their other movies (I'm looking at you, Lady and the Tramp)

    And I love Aramie. She is the funniest woman in the world


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