A thief meets a captive girl in a tower and agrees to show her the world, but they are betrayed.
I’m breaking down movies by their three-act structure. What is three-act structure? I explain it here.
Note: I break the story down into five-minute blocks to make it easier to see the length of each section. Rough time codes follow.
As a baby, Rapunzel was kidnapped from the king and queen by the witch Gothel for the power of her magic hair (introducing the conflict and villain). 5
Rapunzel occupies herself. Flynn Rider steals a treasure from the palace with the Stabbington brothers. 10
Rapunzel fails to convince Gothel to let her leave the tower to watch the annual floating lantern ceremony. 15
Fleeing the palace guards and his partner with the treasure, Flynn meets and is captured by Rapunzel. 20
Gothel returns, and Rapunzel tricks her into leaving for three days. (Note that it is Rapunzel and not Flynn who accepts the call to action.) 25
Rapunzel demands Flynn take her to see the floating lanterns. 30
Rapunzel leaves the tower and feels freedom and guilt. 35
Gothel returns early to find Rapunzel gone. Flynn takes her to a ruffian tavern. 40
Ruffians and Rapunzel sing about their dreams. The palace guards arrive. 45
Flynn and Rapunzel flee the palace guards, including the extraordinary horse Maximus, and get trapped in a flooding cave. 50
Gothel offers the Stabbingtons revenge on Flynn. Rapunzel heals Flynn with her magic hair/song. 55
Flynn and Rapunzel get to know each other. Gothel dares her to offer Flynn the treasure. 60
Rapunzel pacifies Maximus. They all go to the palace. 65
Rapunzel and Flynn watch the lanterns. She offers him the treasure. 70
Flynn gives the treasure to the Stabbingtons, but they betray him. Gothel takes her home. (All seems lost!) 75
Rapunzel realizes (the turn) and confronts Gothel about the fact she was kidnapped. 80
Flynn escapes. Gothel stabs him. He cuts Rapunzel’s hair. Gothel falls to her death. 85
Rapunzel revives Flynn with her tears. She reunites with the king and queen. 90
They live happily ever after. (very brief)