FROZEN FEVER

This animated short based on the mega-hit is attached to Disney’s live-action remake of CINDERELLA (see my review just below). It debuts in theaters on the same day as the studio announced the making of FROZEN 2 and is therefore a swell promotional tool for the corporation that knows how to market as well or better than anyone (even Apple). Built around a catchy new song, it is of course adorable and solidly produced. It’s also shockingly creepy. That’s because the plot surrounds the effort by Elsa to throw a lavish birthday party for her sister Anna. Everything (and everyone — Kristoff, Olaf, Sven the reindeer) is in place at the palace. But there’s one problem: Elsa has a bad cold. And every time she sneezes, tiny little snowman heads come out of her nose. Lots of them… hundreds, then thousands. They just grow and multiply and surround all of those with whom they come in contact. Just like, I don’t know, maybe… GERMS???? Let me not put too fine a point on this: the short appears only three months after a measles outbreak at Disneyland that directly or indirectly affected some 173 people in 17 states and more in Canada, which also triggered a bitter nationwide debate on vaccinations. Disney has turned a pathogen into a fun-filled new revenue stream. Of course, the company is not responsible for the virus. But am I the only one who senses insensitivity? — Jeff Schultz

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