It Should Have Been Called "Twisted"
While "Tangled" is visually stunning and has strong music, it has ended up haunting and repelling this mom to the point where she quite honestly is still having nightmares about it three weeks after seeing it.
I understand I am in the minority, but --just as most reviewers of "The Secret of Kells" seemed to miss the fact it had a very strong religious message-- nowhere did I read a review of "Tangled" that made mention of the horrible, scary, disturbing fact that skulks behind the charming thief, singing barbarians, and witty animals. This movie is about an adult who abducts, imprisons and exploits a child. What is worse, the adult is not the standard issue Disney villainess. She is beautiful, and has manipulated her captive into submission and obedience through a steady diet of passive aggressive undercutting interspersed with rage and occasional kindesses. Worst of all, "Mother Gothel," refreshes her use by brushing Rapunzel's hair while Rapunzel sings, a grotesque perversion of parent/child intimacy.
Less disturbing, yet still really troubling, is the pervasive emphasis on death, dying, injury, and loss. These issues have been handled wonderfully by any number of children's movies ("Up" and "Princess and the Frog" are two recent examples); however, that's not the case here. The starkness of a stolen child, inconsolable parental loss, and unbridled greed that makes the villainess inhuman is just too much.
All of that said, my two children enjoyed it, although the five year old hid her eyes a number of times. There are funny parts. The animation is lovely. 3D is used to good effect, particularly in a truly stunning scene where lanterns are released into the night sky (a "celebration" of the stolen princess's birthday, her parents' desperate call into the unknown). None of this was for me enough to trump the wrong at this movie's heart.
This title contains:
Violence & scariness
Drinking, drugs & smoking
Privacy & safety