((I know I said I wasn’t going to post until the 12th June, but this is a super important post and I need to raise awareness of these issues… Also, I’ve been nominated for some Blogger Award thing, so I’ll probably post that as well this week!))
So the other day, right, I had taken a break from revision and I was really feeling to ingest some Disney. So I think, hmm, rather than watching the ones I watch ALL the time, maybe I should watch an old one.
Then it came to me. ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’. YES! I haven’t seen it for so long that I’ve practically forgotten all about the characters and plot, etc. So I did. I watched it.
I was horrified.
Don’t get me wrong; the movie is absolutely AMAZING. Phoebus is just bae, Esmeralda is #WomanCrushErryday, and the songs and scenes are really well-crafted.
But I was horrified.
Not that it was a scary movie, but (SPOILER aha) within the first 10 minutes of the movie, somebody is dead. And I’m not talking about “Big Hero 6” dead (SPOILER aha) like the sort of dead where you don’t really see, but I’m talking about sprawled upside down with a broken neck on the stairs to the Cathedral.
That was the first straw. The second one was that when Claude Frollo (the villain) was holding and finally saw the baby (later known as Quasimodo), he was disgusted, and on his horse, rode over to the well by the Cathedral, stating aloud when the priest asked him what he was doing, “Sending this monster back to the depths of hell where he belongs.” Like MAMMA MIA, calm it Frollo, he just has a deformation; you don’t have to treat him like an alien.
But obviously, Frollo didn’t get the memo, and decided to name the baby “Quasimodo”, which means, “half-formed”. Wow. OK. Did it need to get that deep though?
The THIRD straw was when (some years later after he was forced by the priest to keep the child, NOT kill it – what sort of monster would DROWN a baby anyway?!) he was teaching Quasimodo the alphabet. Usually, when you teach children the alphabet, you go “A is for Apple, B is for Bike, C is for Cat…” and so on. But obviously, SOMEBODY didn’t get the memo (once again). Claude Frollo’s version of the alphabet went – and I kid you not – like this:
A is for Abomination. B is for Blasphemy. C is for Contrition. D is for Damnation. E is for Eternal Damnation. F is for Forgiveness.
They didn’t get any further than that because of some altercation (Quasimodo accidentally said ‘Festival’ for F…) but really, that was enough.
But not enough for Disney. Because they take it a STEP further and turn Frollo into some randy old man who just wants to have sex with this gypsy that he is obsessed with.
Like, from when he first came into power, all he wanted to do was kill all the gypsies in France. (This is also an issue????) But then suddenly there is this feisty gypsy girl who keeps seeming to defy him and escape all his attempts to capture her. And what does he do?
Sing a song (which is, I can’t lie, a GREAT song if you didn’t entirely understand the meaning behind it) to the ‘Saints’ about how this dark-haired gypsy is tormenting him. Oh, the name of the song? Hellfire. The song is called Hellfire.
Here. Take a look at some of the lyrics: (I’ve just cut bits together)
You know I’m so much purer than
The common, vulgar, weak, licentious crowd
Then tell me, Maria
Why I see her dancing there
Why her smold’ring eyes still scorch my soul (AT WHICH POINT IN THE SONG, A DANCING ESMERALDA EMERGES FROM THE FLAMES… !)
I feel her, I see her
The sun caught in raven hair
Is blazing in me out of all control (OK, this is DEFINITELY not appropriate for little kids to be listening to)
This fire in my skin
Is turning me to sin (THE SONG IS ABOUT HIS LUST)
It’s not my fault
It is the gypsy girl
The witch who sent this flame
He made the devil so much
Stronger than a man
Protect me, Maria
Don’t let this siren cast her spell
Don’t let her fire sear my flesh and bone
And let her taste the fires of hell
Or else let her be mine and mine alone
Now gypsy, it’s your turn
Choose me or
Be mine or you will burn
THE SONG. IS ABOUT. HIS LUST. He wants to kill all the gypsies but now there’s this one who is (admittedly) attractive and so he’s basically offering her a choice, “You’re a witch and you’re gonna burn… Unless you sleep with me.”
EW. NO. Please stop. (The music doesn’t help either, it’s so dark, and there’s these chanting men in the background chanting in Latin and it’s just… *shudders* so, SO wrong!)
This is completely NOT appropriate for little kids. Here, if you are brave enough to watch the scene from the movie. Seriously, if you can watch this and not be entirely shocked that this movie is rated a U then quite frankly, do not have children. I repeat: DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN.
Not just that, but the movie is so dark. Frollo is one of the most messed up Disney villains I have EVER encountered in my entire life.
OK, so I have never really liked the Disney villains but – I can’t lie – some are quite cool. Gaston’s arrogance was funny – before it turned him into a blood-thirsty murderer – Ursula’s attempt at stealing someone else’s life was slightly amusing, especially considering the fact that she just wanted to get out of the sea really and have a life with someone… and even Cruella de Vil had style.
But no. Frollo has no style, he’s not funny, he’s the most GENUINELY cruel villain I have EVER watched in Disney. Even Captain Hook for chicken’s sake! Captain Hook who is very bitter at Peter Pan cutting off his hand, even Hook is a bit of a softie.
I am not sure who was possessed to craft a character like Frollo and then actually give him LINES like the ones they did. Seriously. Whoever created Claude Frollo, I seriously worry about their state of mind.
Similarly, whoever decided “Oh yeah, UNIVERSAL would be a PERFECTLY acceptable rating to put on a movie of this sort…”
LEAVE. Seriously. GET OUT.
That’s all from me, that’s my lovely rant for today. LOL.