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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/16998/tangled-as-political-allegory/

Tangled as Political Allegory

May 18, 2011 by

The idea here is that the evil witch Gothel, who is really old and decrepit but uses magic to look 40-something, is the stand-in for the state. FULL ARTICLE by Jeffrey A. Tucker


Stefano May 18, 2011 at 10:08 am

My three year old made us watch this repeatedly. Incidentally, We were watching Harry Potter and the Deathly hallows yesterday, and my wife said “This movie is totally anti-state.” And it was.

Horst Muhlmann May 18, 2011 at 10:25 am

Of course the original is in the public domain by now, just as with all the great Disney blockbusters. Not all are improvements on the original, but this film certainly is. Sometimes 2.0 is just much better than 1.0, and here we see the big problem with intellectual-property protection. It freezes the first release as the only release for up to several generations. Improving and adapting are made against the law. This is not a problem if you use a story that is old enough. But why should society have to wait 100 years to get a better version of the original? Why should we have laws that artificially slow the pace of progress?

It also shows the hypocrisy of the rent seeking Disney. They take public domain works and put their spin, then locking it up so that others cannot do the same with their works. At the same time, they go to the government each time one of their copyrights are about to expire to get an extension. This, in effect, gives them perpetual copyright.

Tony Fernandez May 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Can’t blame Disney for taking advantage of the rotten system that it has been presented with.

Horst Muhlman May 18, 2011 at 1:03 pm

I certainly do blame them when they go to the government each time one of their copyrights are about to expire and get an extension.

Tony Fernandez May 18, 2011 at 2:17 pm

They’re taking advantage of the system as it is presented with them. They wouldn’t be as successful as they are without taking advantage of it. Now, I’m not saying that it’s a good thing, but blaming Disney does not do nearly as much good laying the blame on the real culprit which is the issuance of copyright in the first place.

Chris Cresci May 18, 2011 at 10:46 am

Why not do a comparison of the original anti-totalitarian “Rollerball” with the anti-capitalist remake?

Lee May 18, 2011 at 11:09 am

All I know is that Disney shows can be very impressionable on small kids. My 5 y.o. daughter saw this and was shocked when Rapunzel’s hair was cut. She was upset about it for days and made numerous comments about it. Months have passed, but just last week, she was playing dress up as Rapunzel in her room. I thought she was fine playing by herself, but when she came out of her room we found that she cut her hair with scissors, at least 9 inches off the back. Just lovely.

Tony Fernandez May 18, 2011 at 11:12 am

” But why should society have to wait 100 years to get a better version of the original? Why should we have laws that artificially slow the pace of progress?”

That is a hilarious statement when considering that we’re talking about Rapunzel. Trying to make me laugh in a library is not cool; it earns me the stares.

Eric May 18, 2011 at 1:27 pm

“Sometimes 2.0 is just much better than 1.0, and here we see the big problem with intellectual-property protection.”

I couldn’t agree more. And sometimes you hear or see 2.0 before you see 1.0 – adding interest to the original.

I recently discovered the work of singer Sam Tsui and producer accompanist Kurt Schneider on Youtube. If you haven’t seen Sam (multiple times – :) then just search for sam on the tube and I’m sure you’ll find it. It’s well worth a look.

This generation brought up on youtube and the internet get it. I found Sam’s covers and mashups (medleys of 1 or more songs from 1 or more artists) and in quite a few I prefer Sam, though I have gone back and found the original out of curiosity.

There must be some exception with respect to singing songs written and performed by others. And thanks for it, we’re all better off.

There’s even others who now take some of Sam’s covers and redo them as well and post on youtube. One young girl added herself into a video of sam and does a duet with him, all using the magic of the new breed of audio/video software. You can have a studio in a box today.

Oh, and for some reason, the copyrights on the old western Have Gun will Travel have expired, and they’re all up on youtube as well. Some were written by Gene Roddenbery, only a few years before Star Trek. You can see the similarity. It’s why Star Trek was sometimes called wagon train to the stars.

AntiNeoFascist May 18, 2011 at 3:04 pm

You forgot the best, and most apt IMO, comparison:

Intervenes in Rapunzel’s freedom and free association with Flynn using two brutes, and then blames the resulting problems on the evil world. Then, in the role of savior, chastises Rapunzel for her flirtation with freedom and reembraces the poor girl, promising to make sure to never let anything bad ever happen to her again.

Intervenes in the free market using coercive laws, regulations, subsidies, and taxes (as well as monetary policy), and then blames the resulting problems on greedy free-market capitalism. Then, in the role of savior, politicians chastise the people for their flirtation with free markets and deregulation and lament the poor victims while promising new laws, expanded powers and greater oversight to make sure to never let anything like that ever happen again.

Daniel Hewitt May 18, 2011 at 4:57 pm

I think Gothel homesteaded that flower……

J. Murray May 19, 2011 at 6:15 am

You know, you have a point there. Government intervention via eminent domain kicked off the whole story. I’m sure Gothel would have sold the queen treatment. Potted it, wandered around as a miracle worker and performed the miracle after putting the patient to sleep and secretly singing them to health. Then again, I wonder how everyone was aware of the flower’s existence in the first place.

Christopher West May 18, 2011 at 8:15 pm

I wrote a blog post in defense of the evil witch, because her property (the flower) was stolen by the king.

Ethan May 18, 2011 at 10:45 pm

yes, the alternate beginning was horrible. The witch has been using the flower, taking good care of it, and singing to it for decades, (centuries?) and it yields an amazing benefit. But then the king’s wife is dying in childbirth so he asks her three times for the flower he has heard of, and she ‘selfishly’ refuses, even though the queen is dying. So the kings soldiers are sent out to force-ably seize the flower, they dig it up, presumably the only one of it’s kind, and make a drink out of it. The flower is gone, the queen lives, the end justifies the means, might makes right. I am so very glad they chose not to include that overtly conflicting message at the beginning, so that children could watch and enjoy it without needing a deprogramming from freedom loving parents.

Jeff, I like your version much better. Your reviews are fun and informative. Thanks for your positive attitude and good spin.

Artisan May 19, 2011 at 2:42 am

Nothing to say about Mr Tucker’s entertaining interpretation, nor Disney’s 2.0. However, it’s quite superficial to dismiss the value of the Grimm’s (research on a much older oral tradition of that) tale. Tales are mostly old explanations of introspective psychological processes, according to Jung. They are not in the least meant for children originally.

Most character interaction represent one and the same psyche evolving from one inner state to another. A king would be a creative and sane mind (mostly symbolism of the “ruling” self involved in a happy and fruitful “union”), whereas an accident to his kingdom, like a dying queen, etc, symbolizes a form of psychological sterility, or worse: insanity.

You could of course dismiss all this as being largely BS, if Jung had not been the great man he was, initially at Freud’s side, and then inspiring many great artists (please check out the site of http://www.engelbrecht.fr, or come to see the exhibition. That’s where I live.), or other men to the creation of self-help programs like that of Alcoholics Anonymous for instance. And last but not least… explaining the necessary individuation process against the collective State (naming them explicitly Nazi and Soviet) many years ago.

Maggie May 19, 2011 at 2:19 pm

Great review, Jeff. Interesting tidbit: The original version of Tangled (with a different name) was seen by test audiences as too girly, so Disney remade the movie into Tangled with a stronger male lead and more action targeted to boys. Apparently, rough-and-tumble fairy tales are the wave of the future.

test June 6, 2011 at 4:32 pm


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