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Tangled (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)

March 16, 2011 by  



Disney’s 50th Walt Disney Animated feature “Tangled”, is a delightful and heartfelt animated film for the entire family.  On Blu-ray, the animation is just gorgeous and the lossless soundtrack is great.  “Tangled” has now become one of my favorite Disney animated features and I can definitely give this film my recommendation!

Images courtesy of ©Disney. All Rights Reserved..

TITLE: Tangled

FILM RELEASE DATE: 2010

DURATION: 100 Minutes

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition (1:78:1), English 7.1 DTS Master Audio, French & Spanish 7.1 DTS-HD DR, English 2.0 DVS, Subtitles: English SDH, French and Spanish

COMPANY: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment

RATED: PG (For Brief and Mild Violence)

RELEASE DATE: March 29, 2011

Directed by Nathan Greno and Byron Howard

Based on the Fairy Tale by Jacob Grimm, Wilhelm Grimm

Screenplay by Dan Fogelman

Produced by Roy Conli

Executive Producer: John Lasseter, Glen Keane

Music by Alan Menken

Editing by Tim Mertens

Casting by Jamie Sparer Roberts

Production Design by Douglas Rogers

Art Direction by Dan Cooper, David Goetz

Featuring the Voices of:

Mandy Moore as Rapunzel

Zachary Levi as Flynn Rider

Donna Murphy as Mother Gothel

Ron Perlman as Stabbington Brother

M.C. Gainey as Captain of the Guard

Jeffrey Tambor as Big Nose Thug

Brad Garrett as Hook Hand Thug

Paul F. Tompkins as Short Thug

Richard Kiel as Vlad

Delaney Rose Stein as Young Rapunzel

When the kingdom’s most wanted—and most charming—bandit Flynn Rider (voice of ZACHARY LEVI) hides out in a mysterious tower, he’s taken hostage by Rapunzel (voice of MANDY MOORE), a beautiful and feisty tower-bound teen with 70 feet of magical, golden hair. Flynn’s curious captor, who’s looking for her ticket out of the tower she’s been locked away in for years, strikes a deal with the handsome thief, and the unlikely duo sets off on an action-packed escapade, complete with a super-cop horse, an overprotective chameleon and a gruff gang of pub thugs. Tangled is a story of adventure, heart, humor and hair—lots of hair.


Enjoyable, vibrant and all-out fun, “Tangled” is another wonderful animated film from Disney!

In 2010, the 50th Walt Disney Animated Classic was released!  Based on the fairy tale “Rapunzel” by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, the film adaptation is directed by Nathan Greno (“Bolt”, “Meet the Robinsons”, “Chicken Little”, “Mulan”) with Byron Howard (“Chicken Little”, “Brotehr Bear”, “Lilo & Stitch”, “Mulan”, “Pocahontas”) and a screenplay by Dan Fogelman (“Bolt”, “Cars”, “Fred Claus”).

“Tangled” would feature the voices of Mandy Moore (“A Walk to Remember”, “Saved”, “The Princess Diaries”), Zachary Levi (“Chuck”, “Less Than Perfect”, “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel”), Donna Murphy (“The Fountain”, “Spider-Man 2”, “Trust Me”), Ron Perlman (“Hellboy” films, “Sons of Anarchy”, “Chronus”), M.C. Gainey (“Beerfest”, “Sideways”, “Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines”), Jeffrey Tambor (“The Hangover”, “Arrested Development”, “The Larry Sanders Show”) and Brad Garrett (“Everybody Loves Raymond”, “‘Til Death”, “Ratatouille”).

The film was a success in the box office as the $260 million film would make over $551 million worldwide and has received mostly positive reviews from film critics.

“Tangled” begins with a pregnant Queen who is ill.  Immediately, her guards search for a cure and that cure would come from a magical healing flower.  But wanting that flower for herself is an elderly woman named Gothel (voiced by Donna Murphy), who wants to use the flower in order to stay young.

The guards managed to give the ill queen the flower via a drink and immediately she gets better and gives birth to a baby girl and names her Rapunzel.  One day, while the king and queen were sleeping, Gothel kidnaps the baby and keeps her in an isolated tower.  We see how Rapunzel’s hair carries the magic from the flower and each time Gothel is with her, she is able to maintain her youth.  And Gothel would raise Rapunzel up to her 18th birthday.

Every year, on her birthday, Rapunzel sees lights in the sky and wonders why it only happens on her birthday.  So, with her turning 18, she hopes to tell Mother Gothel if she can go see the lights outside the castle but Gothel lies to her and tells her that only bad things are outside of the castle and she can never leave.

Meanwhile, a thief named Flynn Rider has stolen the tiara of the missing princess from the castle and he and his thugs are being chased and are literally wanted dead or alive.  Flynn manages to escape from the guards (while barely being caught by the lead guard’s horse, Maximus) and finds a cave which takes him to the isolated tower.

As Flynn climbs up the tower to hide, he is immediately hit in the head with a frying pan by Rapunzel.  She keeps Flynn in her closet and takes the satchel with the stolen tiara and hides it.

Rapunzel is hoping to tell Gothel but when Gothel tells her that she will stay inside the tower forever, Rapunzel decides not to tell her mother but gives her a diversion to leave by telling her that what she wants for her birthday is a certain type of shell, so she can paint.

Gothel tells her that it will take three days to get it and come back but as long as Rapunzel doesn’t talk about leaving the tower, Gothel will get that shell that she had requested.

With Gothel gone, Rapunzel and her little chameleon Pascal awaken Flynn.  When he wakes up,  of course, Flynn wants the satchel with the tiara returned to him but Rapunzel tells him that she will only give it to him if he takes her out to the area where the lights are, so she can see them and when he takes her back home safely, then she will return the satchel/tiara back to him.

Both Flynn and Rapunzel strike a deal and Rapunzel ventures outside the tower for the first time, conflicted because she really wants to see the lights, which Flynn tells her are actually light lanterns lit up for a missing princess every year.  Meanwhile, Gothel finds out that there is a pursuit for Flynn Rider and she begins to worry that someone may find the isolated tower and Rapunzel, so when she goes back to see if Rapunzel is there, she finds her gone.

With Flynn being a wanted man, he drags Rapunzel into his adventures of trying to hide from the guards and also introducing her to a group of men who may not be the nicest men in the area.

As for Gothel, seeing how she is with Flynn, she will do what it takes to make sure Rapunzel returns back home but also, doing all that is necessary to kill Flynn.

What will happen to Rapunzel and Flynn?  Check out “Tangled” available in a 2-Disc Combo Pack on Blu-ray plus a DVD version of the film!

VIDEO:

“Tangled” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1 Aspect Ratio) and I don’t think anyone has found anything negative to say about a modern Disney animated film on Blu-ray and the same can be said for “Tangled”.  Immediately when you start watching “Tangled”, you are greeted with vibrant colors, black levels are nice and fine detail crammed into every frame.  From the detail on the trees, to the detail of Rapunzel’s hair, watching the folds on the clothing of the characters to the details of the Tower, the greenery…”Tangled” features colors and detail galore.

If there was one scene that really caught my eyes was during the chase scene (which applies to audio as well).  The way the mountains look, the way the water looks, even down to the grain of the wood, “Tangled” looked absolutely fantastic.  I was very impressed by the animation for this film.

I detected no artifacting, digital noise, edge enhancement but I did detect slight banding in two spots.  One where both Flynn and Rapunzel were sitting near a camp fire and another scene with a lot of red.  It was noticeable but aside from those short moments, I detected nothing that would have spoiled the film.

Personally, for the majority of the film, “Tangled” was a visual feast and I was quite impressed by how detailed the film was but also how much went into the physics for Rapunzel’s hair.  Overall, awesome PQ!

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

“Tangled” is presented in English 7.1 DTS Master Audio, French  Spanish 7.1 DTS-HD NR and English 2.0 DVS.  While not as strong as other Disney action-based films, still “Tangled” is no slouch as you can hear the wind, plants rustling, the stomping of the hooves of Maximus, the arrows being shot by the guards who are trying to get Flynn Rider and the bumps and slams into Flynn Rider’s noggin from the pan used by Rapunzel.

But possibly the best segment where LFE, surround and rear-surround channels come into play is the chase scene when the guards and Maximus are going after Flynn and Rapunzel.  That was quite impressive audio-wise!

So, there are many moments of immersive audio that you can hear from the surround channels but because this is not an all-action film, one can expect crisp dialogue through the center channels and the score by Alan Menken as well as the music from “Tangled” through the front channels but also at times utilizing the surround and rear-surround channels.

The lossless soundtrack is quite appropriate for a film like “Tangled” and I don’t think anyone can be disappointed by it.

Subtitles are in English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“Tangled” comes with the following special features:

  • Deleted Scenes – (12:36) Featuring three deleted scenes: The Jaunty Moose, Chemistry Develops and Vigor the Visionary featuring intros by directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard on why the scenes were cut.  Note: Scenes are sketches and not 3D rendered.
  • Original Storybook Opening – Originally, the film would feature a storybook opening but the directors felt they wanted to do something different.  So, included are the the two storybook openings version 1 (3:57) and version 2 (4:02).
  • 50th Animated Feature Countdown – (2:03) A countdown featuring clips of all 50 Disney Animated films.
  • Extended Songs – Featuring the extended songs “When Will My Life Begin” (3:35) and “Mother Knows Best” (4:12) with intro by directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard.
  • Untangled – The Making of a Fairy Tale – (12:28) Featuring the making of “Tangled” hosted by Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi.
  • Tangled Teasers – (9:12) Featuring nine animated teasers for “Tangled”.

EXTRAS:

“Tangled” comes with a slip-over cardboard case.  The accompanying DVD is presented in Widescreen (1:78:1), English & Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English 2.0 DVS with subtitles in English SDH and French Subtitles.

This is an update to my previous review as I decided that I had to watch this film again as the first time, I felt I was concentrating too much on the visuals but this time around, I wanted to embrace the musical side to the film as well and I’m glad I did!

Not only did I enjoy it much more the second time, I just realized how awesome this Blu-ray release is by just really focusing on the lossless soundtrack and just finding that right position where the sound effects, especially the music just came alive.

“Tangled” turned out to be a wonderful, delightful animated film by Disney and a wonderful experience that had that romantic comedy but yet darker and magical feel such as “The Little Mermaid” and even “Snow White”.

And as mentioned earlier in my review, this is a wonderful Disney film that wasn’t made by Pixar and perhaps that is a good thing because Disney animated classics have built themselves upon fantasy and adventure and what best to have their 50th animated film to carry on the tradition that Walt Disney had done long ago for his films and that is to have a film that can entertain people of all ages but to also to have elements based on a well-written script.

Sure, John Lasseter may have had his hand in this film as an executive producer but you have to give credit to directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard, especially screenwriter Dan Fogelman for taking on a well-known fairy tale and making an enjoyable film out of it.  Personally, I felt that the creators and staff were able to create a fresh and innovative storyline based on the fairy tale of “Rapunzel” but not make it so kitschy and keeping it fun, humorous and even heartfelt.

While a few may have felt that it was wrong for Disney to use the title of “Rapunzel” and go with the title of “Tangled”, I can understand why they did it.  With “The Princess and the Frog”, many felt the film did skew towards a younger female demographic and “Rapunzel” would have probably done the same.  Enough of the foolishness of even debating about the name, focus on the film and you realize how fantastic of an animated film “Tangled” truly is.

This time, you have Rapunzel and the swashbuckling thief, Flynn Rider and you have a film that the boys and girls will love, but throw in a few deeper and slightly darker elements to make the film rated PG and you have all the ingredients to make a wonderful animated film.

The voice acting for the film was wonderful.  Both Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi have wonderful chemistry ala voice acting and for the most part, the characters and the talented hired for the film were well-cast by Disney.  I’m not sure who did the singing voice for Rapunzel (as I know Mandy Moore can sing) and even for Flynn (can Zachary Levi sing?), but will say that I was quite pleased with both talent’s voice acting performance.

The musical score by Alan Menken was actually quite memorable and like he has done for animated films like “Beauty and the Beast”, “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin”, the music is quite strong.  The musical numbers for “Tangled” are catchy and fun but while the music and the songs really provided a wonderful backdrop to the awesome visuals.  At first, I felt that I was unfair to the music as I kept complimenting the visuals but the second time around, I made it priority to listen to the music and I found myself absolutely loving it.  Menken really created music that complimented the film and once again, he has done a fabulous job.

As for the Blu-ray release, “Tangled” looks absolutely beautiful on Blu-ray and the music and lossless audio soundtrack is wonderful and works for this type of film.  While there are a good amount of special features with this release, I have to admit that I was a bit surprised as I was expecting a whole lot more (as Disney tends to spoil you with a lot of special features) for “Tangled”.  But still, that’s after years of being spoiled by Blu-ray releases from Disney but for what was included, there are still a good number of special features to keep viewers busy.

Overall, “Tangled” is a delightful film that will entertain families although because it’s rated PG and does nearly show a death scene, it was a necessary move by Disney that made the film work.  The film still manages to display the magic of Walt Disney through it’s look and feel and also continuing the tradition of quality with its Blu-ray releases as “Tangled” simply looks beautiful and sounds great via HD.

While not as special features heavy as I would have hoped (and expected) to see from a Walt Disney film, “Tangled” is still an enjoyable and wonderful film for the entire family and I definitely recommend it!






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