A girl sets out to find her brother after he is kidnapped by a mystic queen.
The Snow Queen is a British animated film directed by Martin Gates and inspired by Hans Christian Andersens fairy tale The Snow Queen, featuring Helen Mirren in the titular role. In the film, the evil Snow Queen plans to use an enormous magic mirror to so that it will plunge the world into a perpetual winter so she can take it over, but when the mirror shatters and one piece enters the young Toms body, she kidnaps him to have all the pieces. Toms sister Ellie and her friend, Peeps the sparrow, set out to rescue him before it is too late. A direct sequel, The Snow Queens Revenge, was released the following year in 1996.
Animated retelling of the classic Hans Christian Andersen fable, directed by Martin Gates and featuring the voices of Helen Mirren, David Jason and Rik Mayall. Far away, in her vast ice palace, the Snow Queen plots to rule the world by deflecting all the sun's warmth away from Earth so that it freezes over. But her mirror breaks, and on her mission to find all the missing pieces, she kidnaps Tom, who has part of the mirror in his body. Can his sister Ellie save Tom, and stop the evil Queen from acheiving global dominance?
Ellie and her brother Tom listen to their grandmother reading them a story about the evil Snow Queen. When their younger sister Polly asks Tom if the Queen is coming to their house, Tom says that she only exists in the story. However, the Snow Queen really does live in an icy palace in the North Pole with her three troll servants: Eric, Baggy, and Wardrobe. Her plan is to set up her huge magic mirror on a mountain to reflect the sunlight away so the entire world will become her kingdom. But the mirror falls down the mountain and lands on the trolls flying machine where it shatters into pieces. Two of the pieces hit Tom in the eye and the heart that he falls into an evil curse.
The Snow Queen sends her bats to retrieve the pieces. As they cannot take the two that are inside Tom, the Queen goes out to kidnap him. Ellie and Tom connect their sleds to a bigger sled that is revealed to be driven by the Snow Queen. She takes Tom to her palace and cuts Ellie off of her sled, causing her to fall onto a talking bird named Peeps. Ellie goes out to save Tom from her and Peeps reluctantly decides to go with her. In a snowy forest, they find a house belonging to an old woman, who appears nice, but is actually an evil witch but traps them to use Ellies heart for her elixir of life so she can be eternally young. Peeps tricks the witchs cat, Cuddles, into chasing after him and knocking over the elixir of life, and uses the confusion to unlocks Ellies cell. Ellie and Peeps escape and trap the witch in the basement.
They then meet two humanoid birds named Les and Ivy, who, from Ellies description of Tom, tell her that Tom is going to marry the princess, so Ellie becomes a member of the staff to serve the princess her food. However, she soon discovers that the prince is not Tom. Meanwhile, Tom is rebuilding the Snow Queens mirror, as he is good at puzzles. The trolls try to warn him that the Queen is going to kill him to get the last two pieces, but the Queen convinces him otherwise and kisses him, putting him into a hypnotic state while his veins are full of ice, and will cause his death when it reaches his heart.
The princess and the prince give Ellie and Peeps a royal vehicle to ride to the Snow Queens dominion, however they run into a robber gang of humanoid rats. The Robber King promises his daughter, Angorra, that Ellie can become her slave, but later changes his mind. Ellie is locked in a room with a flying reindeer Dimly who was captured by the robbers. Peeps enters the room and unties Ellies hands, and she unties Dimly. Angorra enters, but they trap her with a barrel. Dimly flies them away, but the King grabs onto the rope that is still wrapped around Dimly, resulting in the King slamming into a building and falling over the edge on top of Angorra.
Dimly does not know where the Snow Queen is, so he goes to his flying reindeer school and asks Freda, a Lapland woman who runs the school. Freda has Dimly fly them over to the Queens castle. There, they meet the three trolls, who ultimately decide to help them. Tom does not have much time left, and has finished putting the mirror together except for the two pieces that are inside him. Freda reveals that the two pieces inside him will kill him, then makes a potion that will dissolve the mirror. Ellie tells Tom to drink it, but just as he is about to, the Queen blasts the vial away with her magic staff. They fight the Queen but Eric and Freda get frozen, and Baggy and Wardrobe grab her staff just as they are frozen as well. The battle eventually causes the vial to fall on top of the mirror and shatter, dissolving the mirror and forming an icy cyclone that chases after the Queens flying carriage and freezes her solid as she attempts to escape. The mirror pieces inside Tom dissolve and the effects of the Queens kiss go away, freeing him. Freda and the trolls are unfrozen.
Freda warns the Queen is not dead and might return in the future. She has Dimly take Ellie, Tom, and Peeps back to the village, and then come back for her and the trolls. Dimly crashlands in the village and Ellie, Tom, and Peeps go to listen to the rest of the story as Dimly heads back to the Snow Queens palace. The film ends with a close-up shot of the frozen Queens eyes lighting up.Ellie Beaven as EllieHelen Mirren as the Snow QueenDamian Hunt as TomHugh Laurie as PeepsGary Martin as DimlyJulia McKenzie as FredaDavid Jason as EricColin Marsh as BaggyRussell Floyd as WardrobeScarlett Strallen as Polly and the princessJulia McKenzie as the old witchRik Mayall as the Robber KingImelda Staunton as AngorraRichard Tate as LesImelda Staunton as IvyRowan DAlbert as the prince
Production and release
The Snow Queen has been in production since 1991, but was completed only in 1995. Both it and its sequel were separately released on the DVD by UCA Catalogue in 2004, and then together as a double-pack in 2005. Previously, the two films were also released on the VHS by Warner Bros.. It was also later made available through Netflix.
Jack Zipes called it "highly comic [and] neatly drawn," praising the "numerous changes that liven the action and transform the plot in unusual ways." He wrote "theres nothing glitzy in this animated film and yet it sparkles with an unusual approach to a humourless tale."
The Snow Queens Revenge is a 1996 sequel in which the Snow Queen returns to life, setting out to seek revenge on those who ruined her plans to rule the world, and it is up to young Ellie and her friends to stop her again. Some of the voice cast changed in the second film.
Toonhound - The Snow Queen (1995)
Hugh Laurie and Imelda Staunton appear in The Snow Queen and The Snow Queens Revenge. Hans Christian Andersen wrote the story for The Snow Queen and Frozen. A Troll in Central Park (1994). The Magic Roundabout (2005). Helen Mirren appears in The Snow Queen and Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of GaHoole.