Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Rapunzel, Rapunzel

April 10, 2008 update: Elaine Magliaro of Wild Rose Reader has posted an original Rapunzel poem.


One of my favorite Rapunzel renditions

I figured Disney would never try to make "Rapunzel" into a film because of what a sad story it really is. There's a happy ending, but it's not tidily wrapped up: Mother Gothel, the antagonist of the story, is still at large, and somewhere in the world, Rapunzel's parents are still mourning the loss of their daughter taken from them at birth. In an early version of the story, Rapunzel unwittingly reveals her prince's secret visits by asking Mother Gothel, "Why is my dress getting so tight around my stomach?" and in all versions, Rapunzel has given birth to twins by the time the prince finds her again. In both versions, Rapunzel did not have premarital sex-- the text clearly states that they were married in the tower. They married themselves, and I totally buy it. For the purpose of the fairy tale, the device works.

Unbeknown to me before now, Disney has had plans for Rapunzel for years. Despite my misgivings about a lot of Disney films, I'm keen to see an original, newly-imagined fairy tale in The Princess and the Frog. I'm not sure why they're bothering with "Rapunzel," and I cringe to think of what they're going to do to the storyline. (Yes, I'll probably see it eventually, but I reserve the right to grizzle and groan.) Here's to hoping that "The Goose Girl" and "Toads and Diamonds" are unpalatable to the Disney franchise....


Another one of my favorite Rapunzel renditions

9 comments:

TadMack said...

Rapunzel!? Seriously!?!?
Yuck.
I'm sour grapes on the Frog Princess thingy. Instead of thinking it's a positive for an African American princess character, I'm afraid it will just annoy me with little stereotypes sprinkled throughout. I'm sure I should just be 'grateful' they're 'reaching out' to the multiracial community. Whatev. Fortunately my sister is twelve (and all I have left is a nephew, and he's not even a year old); I'm just about done having to look at any Disney at all! Yay!

Lone Star Ma said...

Well, i can't see it as a movie, but I just love Rapunzel. Something about the rampion. I love the illustrations in that last version you have imaged - can't remember if it's the Mayer one or not. I've been working on one of my mother-faerie tales on Rapunzel for awhile, but I am slow, due to distractions.

Lone Star Ma said...

I see it's not - there's a beautiful Mayer one, too, I think.

Anamaria (bookstogether) said...

Eek. A Disney Rapunzel. I don't like the look of her, and what's with this Fragonard business?

Anyway, the Zelinsky Rapunzel is one of my favorite picture books, not just Rapunzels or even retellings. Another one you might like is Diane Stanley's Petrosinella: A Neapolitan Rapunzel--have you seen it?

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Anamaria: I have seen the Petrosinela, but it's been a long time, so I'll order it from the library again. Thanks!

LSM: I don't think I've seen the Mayer Rapunzel! I'm sure it's gorgeous.

TadMack: I'm concerned about the potential for little stereotypes, too-- I just think it's about time (overdue) that the franchise formally acknowledged a significant part of their movie-base. Maybe they'll have people on board who actually know what they're doing. I was sad about the Pocahontas fiasco. I turned off the movie after 10 minutes, and ended up reading about instead. I'm not thrilled about the depiction of Jasmine as the Arabic Princess, either. (See? Grizzling and groaning.)

limpy99 said...

I'm going out on a limb here and predicting Disney will leave out the conception of the twins.

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Limpy! It's good to see you. You're probably right. What a pity.

Elaine Magliaro said...

Alkelda,

I decided to post an original Rapunzel poem at Wild Rose Reader after reading your post about Rapunzel.

http://wildrosereader.blogspot.com/2008/04/rapunzel-poem.html

HipWriterMama said...

Oh great. It has a December 2010 release date. And I'm sure they'll have major commercials so all little girls will want it for the holidays. Maybe my kids will have outgrown all of this by then. One can only hope.

And Elaine's poem is great!