Disney, though always somewhat controversial, has been the spark of new controversy recently with the making of the new Disney film called Frozen. This film is an edited remake of a story called Snow Queen. However, the difference between the story and this new film is that the best friend of the main character is now a male, who of course the princess ends up having a love interest in (as with every Disney princess movie). This movie also represents many movies in contemporary times, where one rarely sees a female protagonist fighting crime and doing right in the world without a male counterpart. This is one reason I have found true hope in the new series of The Hunger Games. Though the films/stories do include male counterparts, it seems to me that the gender roles are quite different. Katniss, the main character, is a hardheaded, strong, independent and hard to love woman who is unmistakably loved by Peeta, one of the male leads. Peeta is an emotional, compassionate and loving character who still being heterosexual, is madly in love with Katniss. Here is a great article from NPR expressing the gender role differences in this movie, then in typical movies.
Now one can read for days the controversy about Disney princess characters, and even go far enough to look at the gender roles with males as well as female in these Disney movies. However, another downfall to the Disney films, again compared to the Hunger Games is the lack of diversity with the characters, some may even say racism. Taking a look at the most famous Disney princesses one sees little diversity, as well as other characters in their stories. For the most part the Disney princess world is predominantly white, thin, long hair and big beautiful eyes, which then ultimately means that many children grow up hoping to look like that. Another critique of the new movieFrozen, is that the main character looks very similar to that of the main character in the movie Tangled. This is incredible given the technology we now have and the people we see everyday in our lives, that we can still manage to show this idealistic white woman as the main character in these Disney movies that young children watch as inspiration and role models. However, then in the Hunger Games, you see many different characters of color, and you see them all sharing a very big connection and love with Katniss. This film is supposed to be based on the future, and though it still has its flaws, it depicts the idea that no matter who you are, and of what race you are, the people with the money hold the power, and everyone else in the world needs to fight together hand in hand in order to win.