By Emma Berkel

   Over the years, Disney has garnered a reputation for producing high quality children’s films that the whole family can enjoy. The company consistently takes us into a fantasy world full of vibrant characters, quality animation, and well-timed humor. Of course, Tangled is no exception.

   Disney’s latest flick takes inspiration from the classic fairy tale, Rapunzel. A wicked witch known as Mother Gothel is cast as the main baddie, and true to the original, she has imprisoned the leading lady in a tower that can only be entered by climbing the young girl’s incredibly long locks. However, the movie’s plot deviates in that Mother Gothel uses Rapunzel’s hair to obtain eternal youth. That new quality owes to the blessing of a magical flower and is lost when the hair is cut, thus explaining why it’s kept so long.

   Differing further, the man that prompts Rapunzel to leave the tower is not a handsome prince but a handsome wannabe swashbuckler known as Flynn Rider. In this version of the story, Rapunzel has always longed to see the kingdom’s lantern ceremony up close. Flynn just wants his tiara back (he worked only too hard to steal it) since it fell into Rapunzel’s hands. Ultimately, the two make a deal and share a dangerous journey that builds on self discovery.

   As with most Disney movies, Tangled features a few animal sidekicks. The over-protective chameleon Pascal is Rapunzel’s secret pet and the dutiful Maximus, like a blood hound in more ways than one, is hot on Flynn’s thieving tail. Along with Mother Gothel and a softhearted gang of thugs, the two animals provide their own spin to the movie’s humor and make sure there’s never a dull moment.

   But above all that, what makes Tangled stand out is its superior animation. Everything from individual blades of grass to the texture of clothes is rendered near perfectly, and a head of hair moves and shines with all the luscious magic one would expect of a hair-centered fairy tale.

   While it’s still clearly a movie directed at children, there’s more than enough to impress and keep an older audience engaged. In fact, this reviewer is planning to see Tangled again, and this time with the little brothers.