It seems like only yesterday that I walked into the theater for Disney’s Frozen on its opening night, quite unaware of what the film was, let alone how popular it was to become. I can’t blame myself for not knowing then, because when it first opened in 2013 it had virtually no publicity, no hype, and only a few trailers featuring only Olaf and Sven. There was hardly anyone else in the showing I saw, because it was Thanksgiving day. Imagine my surprise at seeing two young princess, one with awesome ice power, and hearing “Do You Wanna Build A Snowman?” for the first time! And I’m fairly sure that the memory of hearing and seeing “Let It Go” on the big screen will never go away.

All of this is to say that it doesn’t feel like it’s been six years then, because Frozen hasn’t really left. But here we are, only a month and a half out from the sequel, and things are very different. Everyone knows who Anna & Elsa are, everyone knows all the words to all the songs. I imagine every theater will be packed on opening night.

So let’s take a look at new trailer for Frozen 2 (which they decided not to give another title), and see what we can expect from the follow up film:

A couple things to note right off the bat —

This looks a little darker and edgier than I was expecting, and that’s great! This looks like a full-fledged fantasy adventure with all the trimmings, and while that isn’t out of Disney’s wheelhouse, it feels particularly contemporary with the rise of high and grimdark fantasy. Yep, Disney is basically tapping into the Game of Thrones fan base.
Elsa has like 4 costume changes in this trailer alone. That really stood out to me.
We only saw a tiny bit of Anna and Elsa’s parents in the first movie before they *SPOILER* died tragically, but they’re coming back in this one! (Will they CONFIRM the Tarzan connection?! Even just a small line about taking a trip to Africa…)
This movie seems to want to recon some stuff from the first, and address some questions that have been floating around the internet since about the 3rd week of the film’s release, including where Elsa got her powers and whether or not Anna & Elsa literally never saw each other growing up.

This movie seems to be much more Elsa-centric than the first, and I am perfectly ok with that. I was always of the opinion that the first one really suffered from an Elsa deficiency — she is undeniably the most interesting character. But she’s also very one dimensional (likely a result of the many, many rewrites the movie went through, with the original plan being Elsa as the villain), and I want to see her become a more fleshed out person. That being said, there’s going to be plenty of Anna and Kristoff and Olaf and Sven, which are all wonderful too. I’m really excited to watch the Anna and Elsa dynamic now that they will have the chance to share a whole movie’s worth of screen time together and we’ll get to see how they develop as people because of each other.

It’s hard to tell exactly what the plot of this movie is going to be apart from the gang going on some quest to find these lost people that are important for some reason. It seems like they might have an answer for Elsa’s powers, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they end up being of little relevance in the end.

One interesting bit in here is that troll explains that Elsa could “lose herself” to her magic if she’s careful, and I really like the idea that magic is a very consuming thing because it is rarely presented this way in fantasy. Expect for perhaps in instances of villains with a power complex, magic is not treated as potentially damaging in the ferocity by which people become attached to it. I’m not sure if this is actually the angle they are trying to hit, but I will give them major props if it is. Elsa is already an *ahem* isolated character, it would completely make sense that she becomes totally absorbed in her power, especially if there is new power on the rise.

The big question is whether or not Anna will develop some sort of magic in this film. Honestly, I wouldn’t mind either way, but if she does I hope it’s for reasons deeper than fan service. We shall see.

All in all, this sequel looks pretty on par with what I expected it to be, with perhaps a bit more edge. Admittedly, the plot looks dangerously tedious and I’m a bit worried it’s going to fall into a convoluted mess much like the first one did, but at the end of the day I don’t really mind because the first one already set that standard, and the fact is the film’s got a lot more going for it than the plot. It’s got fantastic visuals, and we’re all waiting to hear whether or not the songs live up to the original soundtrack. It’s unlikely we’ll get another “Let It Go,” but I’d be happy with even a fraction of that majesty.

I’m pretty hyped for this sequel, and I’m keeping a really open mind about it. My prediction is that it will be a B at worst, likely won’t reach over an A- but I’m not counting it out. That’s my prediction, I’m locking it in!

Frozen 2 is in theaters November 22, 2019.

Tell Us: What are you most looking forward to in Frozen 2?