We grew up watching Disney movies. Which means I'm still growing up because I still watch them. But, I recently discovered the real stories Disney princess movies were based on. The Real Grimm Stories. (Google them. There are several versions, the more recent they are, the more sugar coated they are.)
But....the princesses in these stories did not in fact wake up or were healed from true loves kiss, or find their prince charming. Most of the time they had to kill someone or themselves and the rest of the characters didn't just deal with the princess "winning", they were brutally murdered or incapacitated to prevent them from stopping the princess' happiness.
Let me give you an example of Cinderella, the real story. Then you can decide if you want to read the rest, and if you have a sick mind like mine then you probably will. Actually, it's not really that gruesome, but definitely not rated G.
Cinderella's dad remarries, blah blah, Cinderella is too "dirty and ugly" to go to the Prince's ball. Cinderella cries by her mother's grave and magically gets a silver dress. There's no pumpkin carriage (boo, my favorite part). The prince dances only with Cinderella. Cinderella leaves and loses her shoe. Cinderella's shoe is so special, and no one has the same size foot as her in the entire land. Cinderella's step sisters try on the shoe. One of them cuts off her toes to fit into the shoe and the prince takes her with him, then she is bleeding everywhere so he takes her back. Then the other sister cuts off her heel to fit in the shoe. Again, blood everywhere. By now the shoe is probably super bloody and soiled but the prince returns again and it fits Cinderella. Then they leave to live in the castle, and the sisters want to come too but then birds attack them and peck out their eyes and everyone lives happily ever after! Except the step sisters.
Now, while Disney probably would not have made millions selling these movies to children, examples such as Snow White and the Huntsmen have begun to play off the original stories to make action and horror movies which have closer ties to the original.
Almost all of these fairy tales could be made into horror movies, but Hollywood has probably not tried to do that so that the children are not scarred by their beloved characters, (what, Hollywood actually cares about people?) My guess is that Disney or someone has bought the rights to all these stories and is paying everyone else off to prevent this from happening. But honestly, I think children become more scarred and depressed when they realize that they can't just be a princess and live happily ever after. Pretty much Disney princess movies are the equivalent to Nicholas Sparks' movies. You can decide whether or not that is a good or bad thing.
The only knight in shining armor you're gonna get is the one that comes out of the limo on the Bachelorette.
Disney also makes it seem like all parents are hard ass control freaks but no parent I know would let their kid get married and run off with a random stranger at age 15.
Thats why, in regards to Disney movies, I always stick to watching the animal ones. I guess talking animals are more believable than true loves first kiss curing someone from being stone cold dead.
I'm not even going to go into the whole feminist debate, because quite frankly that would take too much energy, plus I wouldn't really call myself a feminist enough to argue about it.
But basically, Disney just tells us women to rely on rich and hot people to live happily ever after. (Sounds good to me.)
Disney princesses do model how to think logically and solve problems though. Here is a pie chart (that I did not make) to demonstrate this.
See look, almost 5% involves actually thinking or solving problems.