The Symbolic Meaning of Snow in Disney’s Frozen

The use of the elements within literature and film has been used to symbolize traits of characters for a long time. Frozen is no exception and the use of snow helps in developing the movie storyline and underline some of the most important messages within the film.

In the movie, we see the main character Elsa isolated from her sister and it appears that she is not available for her sister. When looking to see what it means to be cold hearted you find out  it means that they are emotionally unavailable and shutting down usually due to some kind of repression. Elsa was repressing who she was and being isolated from her sister, someone she trusted and had fun with took a toll on her emotionally and goes along with being cold-hearted. Her father even repeated to her “conceal it, don’t feel it, don’t let it show.” Her ice magic was not only what she blamed for this separation and a constant thing she was told to repress and not feel but also is a symbolic representation of what her family and she are doing to her emotionally.

Once, Elsa reveals her power and feels free, snow overtakes the kingdom and her sister, Anna sets forth to find her. Snow is a symbol of purity and gentle consistency. Both of these can also describe Anna as a character when she begins her journey to finding her sister. She was separated from her sister and was locked away in the castle with no explanation at all. When the gates finally opened and she was exposed to the world she was a pure, naive, person. She had little interaction with people and was in awe of the world around her but, not exactly keen in understanding people as a whole making her extremely trusting. This trust hurts her with Hans but, helps her with Kristoff. The other representation of snow that it means a gentle consistency. This can also be a description of Anna. When looking for her Elsa, Anna continually defends her. Whenever people called her a monster she immediately would say that she wasn’t, whenever there was an obstacle in her path to find Elsa she wouldn’t give up. Anna was consistent in her belief of the people she loved and in her actions.

Finally, snowflakes themselves play a role in one of the overall themes of the movie about self acceptance and individuality. Since finding out that no two snowflakes are alike, snow has been used as a symbol for individuality. The fact that her magic was snow and ice wasn’t a coincidence. Elsa spent her entire life conforming to the ideals and beliefs that her parents put upon her as she was expected to hide what made her different and repress her magic. When Elsa began using her magic and expressing herself she was accepting herself and her magic and embracing  what makes her different. Even after the events of the movie at the end she still accepted her magic and she embraced her individuality. 

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1 Response to The Symbolic Meaning of Snow in Disney’s Frozen

  1. jcampo says:

    I love this comparison!!! Frozen is one of my favorite movies and a big part of my childhood. It’s so interesting to see the movie’s association with the elements! I really like how you analyzed the movie from a whole other perspective!

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