I mean, the animation itself is awesome. The art direction and voice work are awesome, but not since 1994 have they come out with a cartoon feature that was actually a good movie. The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King were amazing bloody films that also happened to be cartoons. Then they made Pocahontas and everything went to crap.
Well, no, The Emperor's New Groove wasn't bad - gotta' give 'em credit, there - but it seems like the good animated movies (in North America) are all being made at Pixar, now. Like anyone who was once a child, I was very pleased to see Disney return to hand-drawn animation with The Princess and the Frog, but upon watching it last night...
The whole thing feels very after-school-special, y'know? The difference being that movies like The Lion King, Snow White and Bambi concern themselves with being good movies first, and then - perhaps - there's some sort of subtext that will provide their target audience with a life lesson.
Ever since Pocahontas, however, they seem to first aim to teach their young audience a wholesome lesson we can all agree on, and either shoehorn a narrative into it or squeeze it into a previously chosen property. It's no longer a subtext - it's the whole text.
Animation? Great. Wonderful artistry, and some clever humor. But The Princess and the Frog is nowhere near the classics that Disney once churned out with such regularity.
Or perhaps I'm just getting old.