I recently watched the movie frozen, and struck me emotionally. I felt there was something deeper going on, and I thought about it and I think I have a good idea of one possible interpretation of the movie. *** SPOILER ALERT *** I will be going through the plot in detail and so don't read this review until after you have watched the movie. The main cue to deeper meaning is the ice. The ice stands for the truth and integrity. Ice is a manifestation of the true self. The entire movie is about the struggle of the true self against the false self.
To start with, the main thing that made the deeper meaning click for me is to realize that Anna and Elsa are in fact the same person. Elsa is the true self. I was very confused at first because I thought that Anna was the false self, but it didn't make sense with the rest of the movie. I then realized that Anna is the manifestation of the personality. When they are children, Elsa and Anna are in harmony as children are with their true self. However, Anna gets struck with ice to the head and this creates a panic. I think this implicitly means that Anna is attacked for being her true self as a child. She is rushed to the troll healer. The troll healer I think means well, but he is actually corrupt. His advice is to erase Elsa's memories which is basically telling Anna to self-erase her true self. He also warns her about fear, but all his advice is terrible because it greatly escalates fear in Elsa. Elsa must suppress her ice and cut herself off from Anna. Elsa is also cut off from the rest of the world. Notice that the troll healer can't heal the heart. This makes sense because corrupt parents can't heal the hearts of their children. Elsa's ability is considered a curse and she is told to control it by not feeling. Later on, it is pretty apparent that Anna is now completely isolated from Elsa. She is very lonely as people are when they suppress their true self. Elsa is completely isolated in her room which tells me that the true self is completely suppressed. Elsa can't really control her power because the true self can't really stop existing and conform to corrupt people. The true self can never fully self-erase and so the depression is manifested in Anna and Elsa. When coronation day arrives, Anna is now completely the false self. She is very care-free and instantly falls in love with the very corrupt Prince Hans. This is one of the ways we know that Anna is the false self. She is completely blind to the corruptness of people around her. I thought it was very fitting that Elsa has to suppress herself the very most in order to become Queen.
At the dance later, Elsa is very quiet and refuses to dance. She knows that if she revealed her ice, the people there would be afraid of her. Anna on the other hand dances with the Duke and Prince Hans who are both very corrupt. She decides to get engaged to Hans, but Elsa refuses. This also tells me that Elsa is the true self because she is able to recognize the danger of marrying Hans. Anna is angry and wants to know why Elsa cuts her out. The false self wants to know why it can't be happy and is angry at the true self. Elsa loses control and reveals her power and this incites anger in the Duke and fear in the crowd. To me the Duke represents corrupt authority that seeks to exploit. The crowd represents people who obey authority and being your true self creates fear in them.
Elsa runs away. Her running away creates a winter. Basically revealing your true self creates fear, panic, and anger (Duke) to those around you. Anna must leave after Elsa in order to try to restore things the way they were. Anna is still the false self and is trying to stop the waves of cold that are inevitably released when Elsa's powers are revealed. Elsa sings the "Let it go" song which is quite powerful. This is how we know for certain that Elsa is the true self and the ice is truth and integrity. This song moved me a lot and I think it moves a lot of people because it reaches down through their unconscious and their true selves crave the freedom. In the song she is expressing how she won't hold it back and she doesn't care about what others think and that the cold doesn't bother her. Anna is seeking after her sister to restore things to teh way they were before. She can't handle the cold very well and wishes her sister had powers that were powers of summer instead of ice. She comes across Christoff. He enters covered in snow and his job is hauling ice. These cues of ice let us know that Christoff is actually a very good person. Anna recognizes that only with his help can she go and find Elsa which is rather telling. It often takes a very good person and friend to help us on our path back to our true self. Anna is still the false self and she is easily offended by Christoff. Christoff is also able to see the danger in Anna's engagement and tries to warn her but she is defensive. At this moment, they are attacked by wolves, or more accurately, Christoff is attacked by wolves. The wolves represent Anna's false self emotionally attacking Christoff when he tries to tell her the truth about the corruption of Hans. Christoff still follows her even though he was just attacked by wolves which was really her attack. This tells us that he still does care about her, but he is feeling reluctant to help her when she doesn't seem to want his help and will attack him when he does. But he grudgingly recognizes that she really does need him. She is completely unaware of how lost she is and needs Christoff to even know which way to go.
They then meet Olaf the snowman who becomes their guide. Olaf is the innocent child that was abandoned/destroyed when the original accident happened. We know this because he was destroyed in their childhood and is only restored when Elsa becomes free. He is also completely unaware of the danger of heat like a child is unaware of the danger of corrupt people. The fact that he becomes the guide tells us that Anna must visit her childhood memories in order to meet Elsa again. She wants to climb the wall and really can't. Olaf shows her how to find the staircase. Olaf is also very confused on why Anna can't just knock and talk to Elsa. Anna meets Elsa, and that they must meet alone with only Olaf is the clue that they were actually the same person. Anna is trying to convince Elsa to bring back summer, but Elsa can't. Anna is unaware of how Elsa is feeling and is trying to convince her to come back. She is unaware that once the true self is let free, she can't go back to the way things were before. Anna is struck with ice in the heart. To me this means that full exposure to teh true self is fatal to the false self.
Elsa refuses to allow Anna to corrupt her into going back and sends the huge snow creature to drive them out. Anna is starting to become cold and Christoff takes her to see his family. Now as they are going to visit the troll family, notice the heat vents and the complete removal of all snow and ice. This is a cue that the family is actually a corrupt manipulative influence. This is verified by them wanting to manipulate Christoff and Anna to get married on the spot. This is the very danger that Christoff warned Anna about earlier. Anna is still the false self at this point and in love with Prince Hans. They are very shallow and judge her to be a good match looking at only her looks. They are basically trying to setup Christoff with a person that is still dominated by the false self.
He is constantly trying to ward off their manipulation, but not being very successful. They quit trying when the coldness of Anna manifests which is interesting. The troll healer comes and says he can't do anything to help her heart. They then send Anna and Christoff to Prince Hans which is sending them in the completely wrong direction. Meanwhile, the corrupt Duke and Hans come to attack Elsa and bring back summer. The Duke through hostility, and Hans through manipulation. The ice monster tries to protect Elsa but fails. She is imprisoned again, but she can't bring back summer which is saying she can't go back to the way she was before. Anna is getting colder. The ice in her heart reveals to her the true nature of Hans. Hans only loved her false self that he could manipulate. Hans was just using her before to get to the throne of Elsa's. The ice in Anna's heart is beginning to reveal to her the corruption around her that she couldn't see. She realizes she doesn't know what love is and how shallow the false self really is. Olaf who is the childhood guide begins to teach her. Elsa uses ice to escape her captors and a storm begins. I take the storm to mean the emotional turbalence Elsa and Anna are going through. The path from the false self to the true self is very painful and turbulent. The storm is also a great sifter that reveals the real nature of the world around her. Only Christoff is willing to go through the storm and try to save Anna. Anna is wandering to find Christoff because she has learned that he is the one that actually cares about her. As Anna is becoming more aware of the truth she is getting colder and colder. The ice in her heart is killing her false self. Anna then is willing to die or let her false self completely die in order to save Elsa from the corruption of Hans. When she does, Han's sword is destroyed and Anna is fully ice. Once Anna becomes fully ice, she then melts because she now loves Elsa who is her true self. I take the love will thaw as the ending of the storm of turbulence that comes from emerging with Anna loving Elsa and they are in harmony again. Elsa has found the oasis where she can be happy and no longer has feel fear because she has removed the corrupt people out of her life. She cuts off relations with the Duke of Weselton and sends back Hans. She is surrounded by people that enjoy her ice and she now can create a perpetual winter in her castle. Olaf is now permanently protected from melting. She is leaving the door open which means she will not hide herself any longer. I like how it ends with a shot of the castle being in winter in isolation. She has created an oasis where the people that value her for who she is can gather away from summer which is the rest of the world outside.