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The Princess and the Frog (2009) - Movie Review for Parents

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating


The Princess and the Frog
Photo © Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved.

Bottom line: The Princess and the Frog offers an eccentric concoction of flavor and fun, featuring a fabulous new princess in familiar fairy tale fashion. Some parents may be concerned by frequent references to voodoo magic and related items such as tarot cards and talismans.

MPAA Rating: G
Genre: Animated/Comedy/Adventure/Musical
Runtime: Approx. 95 minutes
Studio: Walt Disney Animated Studios
Directors: Ron Clements, John Musker
Release Date: December 11, 2009 (wide release)

The Princess and the Frog Movie Trailer

The Princess and the Frog - Overview

As a little girl, Tiana's loving parents instilled in her many wonderful values, and along with that, her father passed on his passion for great food. Now that she is older, Tiana is determined to fulfill her father's biggest dream by opening a restaurant of her own.

While Tiana's goal seems just about in her grasp, a character creating quite a stir in town seems to be going in the opposite direction. Prince Naveen, from the mythical country of Maldonia, has found himself in an unfortunate state of affairs and has set his eye on Tiana's friend, rich debutante Charlotte LaBouff. His plan to marry Charlotte is waylaid, however, when he falls for the voodoo trickery of the malicious Dr. Facilier and ends getting turned into a frog.

Believing Tiana to be a princess, the frog Naveen convinces her to give him just one little kiss. But fairy tales don't always come true, and Tiana's good deed lands her in the same spot as Naveen. Now a frog herself, Tiana must journey with Naveen into the bayou in the hopes of finding someone who can help them both.

New friends and amazing adventures lead them down a path that they never expected, and Tiana and Prince Naveen learn about life and love while deep in the Louisiana bayou. Meanwhile, Dr. Facilier and his new friend Lawrence have a little dream of their own. Will Tiana and Naveen's amphibious adventure cost them everything?

The Princess and the Frog - Guide Review

Disney owns the market on animated princess movies, and in many ways, their latest royal offering is just like the rest – kind, deserving, independent young woman beats the odds, finds her prince charming, and smiles as all of her dreams come true. It’s not all stuff we’ve seen before, though. Set in the hoppin’ town of New Orleans, The Princess and the Frog offers an eccentric concoction of flavor and fun, featuring a truly fabulous new princess who is, of course, beautiful, smart, good, and hardworking. Kids will enjoy the quirky characters who become her friends (although they may be crushed when one of them dies), the snappy songs spanning several soulful New Orleans genres, and the requisite fairy tale story.

But, while this festive film puts forth a decent role model and more than one great life lesson, it is also studded with elements surrounding magic and the supernatural that could be frightening to young children and could possibly be concerning to parents, depending on their feelings and beliefs about such things. The voodoo witch doctor villain in the movie, Dr. Facilier, is reminiscent of the wicked Queens in Snow White and Sleeping Beauty, who use dark magic to accomplish their selfish designs, and his shadowy henchmen from “the other side” are about as scary as the evil Horned King and his warriors in The Black Cauldron. References to voodoo and magic are made throughout the film, and Dr. Facilier uses things like voodoo dolls and blood-filled talismans to manipulate others for his own selfish purposes.

The Princess and the Frog - Content Overview

*May contain spoilers.

  • Violence (Medium): Violence in The Princess and the Frog is mostly of the cartoonish slapstick sort with characters falling, crashing into things, getting their tongues tied together -- that kind of thing. Three hunters in the movie wield weapons such as knives, guns and clubs (with which they beat each other mercilessly while trying to catch frogs). Dr. Facilier calls out scary shadows, his "friends from the other side," to go after the frog Naveen. They catch him by pulling his shadow back to Facilier. The most harm comes to Ray the firefly, who is squished underneath Facilier's boot.
  • Scary Scenes (High): Scenes listed under "Violence" may be frightening to young kids. The frogs end up in some perilous situations in the bayou involving things like hungry alligators and hunters. Children may be frightened by Dr. Facilier in some scenes where he sings about his friends from the other side. The scenes depict scary-faced shadows, cartoony voodoo dolls, singing voodoo masks, skulls, and other voodoo imagery. The scary shadows chase down the good characters. Their desire is to help Facilier so that he in turn will give them the souls of the people in New Orleans. In the end, a screaming Facilier is taken by the shadowy "friends."

  • Sad/Unsettling Scenes (High): Princess Tiana misses her late father, and she wants more than anything to open a restaurant and fulfill the dream he’d always had. One character in the movie dies, and his friends are all very sad.

  • Sex/Nudity (Low): Some girls in gowns show a lot of cleavage. Several kisses occur throughout the movie (a couple between girls and frogs, and a couple between a man and a woman), and kissing is discussed frequently. Naveen is a real ladies' man and all the girls dote over him. He likes having "a redhead on the left and a brunette on the right." Several jokes containing mild innuendo are made.
  • Drugs and Alcohol (Medium): Visual references to wine and/or champagne are made throughout the movie during scenes involving parties and restaurants. A couple of main characters, including Tiana, are shown taking sips of wine and/or champagne.
  • Profanity (None): No profanity is used, but the word "butt" is used, and the word "Lord" is used.
  • Disrespectful/Imitative Behavior (Extreme): Kids may decide to imitate the use of tarot cards, voodoo dolls, and other such items shown in the movie. Also, Naveen hopes to use his charm and marry Charlotte for her money, Naveen's servant Lawrence is jealous of Naveen and agrees to Dr. Facilier's plan in order to get money, and Facilier was obviously willing to trade his soul for power and magic that would help him get money. Charlotte is a spoiled little rich girl who demands everything all the time.

The Princess and the Frog Topics to Discuss

  • After seeing The Princess and the Frog, kids may have questions about: voodoo, witch doctors, magic, shadows or spirits, tarot cards, voodoo dolls, New Orleans, royalty, wishing on a star, the bayou.
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