As a job perk, I received three tickets for an advanced screening of Disney’s latest animated release, The Princess and the Frog. I was super excited to see Disney’s first black princess. Or was it? You see, I had major issues with the film because of a few things:
1. Princess Tiana was a frog the majority of the movie
When you look at any of the promotional materials you see a beautifully dressed, elegant Tiana before you, but she is in fact playing dress up while wearing the outfit highlighted in so many scenes with her and the frog. Princess Tiana quickly turns into a frog, and remains that way up until just about the last few moments of the film.
2. Stereotypical African-American characters
There was a character named Pookie in the movie. Enough said.
3. Demonic Tone
I am surprised Gadget (my three-year-old’s official internet name) was not scared, but I was! Demons and spirits came after the frog. Prince Naveen sold his soul to some sort of devil character, and these spirits could travel through time to capture and destroy. A little bit too much for a preschooler perhaps?
4. Prince Naveen bought Tiana her restaurant
Princess Tiana worked very hard to accomplish her dream of owning her own beignet restaurant, and this only became possible after her husband bought her the place. Now, I know I sound a little feminist here, but if this movie is being celebrated for role of the Princess, all of her success should not be attributed to her husband. Which brings me to my last, and biggest point.
5. Princess Tiana had to marry into royalty during the last five minutes of the movie
Tiana was not a princess, until she married Prince Naveen in the last few scenes!! The trailer definitely portrays Tiana as a Princess from the beginning, but this is not the case. Just as many hardworking woman are not recognized until a man is associated with them, Tiana became Princess Tiana when (as a fog) she wed the Prince. Ughhh! Disney, come on!