The Princess and the Frog (2009)

Starring Anika Noni Rose, Bruno Campos, Keith David, Jennifer Cody, Jenifer Lewis, Jim Cummings, Michael-Leon Wooley, Peter Bartlett, John Goodman, Oprah Winfrey

Directed by Ron Clements & John Musker

Expectations: Moderate. I want to like this one.

Disney finally makes a return to hand-drawn animation and it’s actually pretty good! The Princess and the Frog tells a modified version of the classic tale, The Frog Prince, but this time around both a prince and a princess are transformed into amphibians. Oh no! Featuring the stunning backdrop of New Orleans, Louisiana and all the jazz and Cajun fixin’s that come along with it, The Princess and the Frog is a delight for fans of classic Disney animation.

That being said, I think the film is a bit too long. Perhaps one or two fewer songs and it would have been much better, because realistically there’s only so many princess songs I can handle in one sitting. I suppose I should have expected as much in a Disney Princess film, but I was hoping for a bit more variety. Keith David is the cast standout as the Shadow Man voodoo practitioner, owning every scene he’s in with an oozing charm. His big song is the best of the film as well, featuring some insanely good animation that is reminiscent of the psychedelic Pink Elephant song in Dumbo.

Overall, it’s a great reboot to the hand-drawn Disney lineup and I hope they put out some more of these types of movies. The film expertly captures the mood of New Orleans and will excite and delight fans of all ages.