Based on the classic fairy tale “Rapunzel,” the namesake character spends her life locked in a tower with an old woman who claims to be her mother. The woman has entrapped her because of her long, lustrous locks of hair, which provide magical powers — namely, healing and eternal youth. She longs to go outside and into the world to discover the origin of some bright lights that appear every year on her birthday, but “Mother” refuses to let her. When a stranger wanders up into her tower, she coerces him to take her out of the tower and into the kingdom to see the lights. As her world, literally, expands, she finds her resolve challenged, her paradigms shift and her true identity revealed, all the while falling in love with her strange guide.
“Tangled” takes place in a magical world were a girl’s hair has healing powers. In spite of being seventy feet long, our heroine’s “goldy locks” aren’t too heavy for this waif-like lass to carry around on top of her head.
The characters in this children’s fairy tale exhibit some pretty grown-up values. A wicked woman kidnaps a young girl and pretends to be her mother. Although usually very respectful to the woman she believes to be her mother, Rapunzel is conflicted about defying her wishes to remain locked in the tower. Finally, Rapunzel tricks her into leaving the house long enough so she can escape. Her selfish, evil “mother” continues to chase and deceive her throughout the movie trying to convince Rapunzel to return home to the “safety” of the tower.
Rapunzel’s love interest, Flynn, enters the picture as a thief whose only interest is in gaining wealth. As he begins to care about Rapunzel, however, his values change and he becomes her champion and a champion for justice in the kingdom. Flynn tells her that “rebellion is just part of growing up,” a rather unpleasant axiom for parents trying to raise obedient children. Perhaps the more appropriate way to say it is this: “at some point, teenagers have to think for themselves and weigh their decisions against the teaching of their parents.” This paradox presents an excellent opportunity for parents and children to talk about issues like freedom vs. trust and responsibility.
We happily award our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal to this movie for all ages. Get entwined with “Tangled”! You will be glad you did.