The love scene between Rapunzel and Flynn on the boat could also remind some of The Little Mermaid, right down to the kiss right after the love song being interrupted by the main villain's sidekicks.
During the escape from the guards after the Snuggly Duckling, Flynn briefly imitates Tarzan's tree-surfing while escaping on the log flume leading away from the dam.
Mother Gothel's hood and also the shiny red apples she packs into her basket recall the witch from Snow White.
Not to mention the fact that the Queen in Snow White looks young and beautiful but disguises herself as an old and ugly crone with magic, while Gothel is really old and ugly but disguises herself as young and beautiful. Also with magic.
And similar to Snow White is when after Flynn cuts off Rapunzel's hair, his hand falls on the floor dropping the object he was holding. The scene looks pretty similar to the scene in which we see Snow White's hand falling on the floor and dropping the apple.
There's even a shout-out to the film's long development; the pub thug that goes and gets the guards? He's one of the earlier designs for Flynn–he even wears the same colors.
It's actually Nathan Greno, one of the directors.
A little more obscure, but still there–when Gothel, during "Mother Knows Best", snuffs out the candles, it's a mild reference to "Snuff Out the Light", a cutVillain Song from The Emperor's New Groove.
Rapunzel and Flynn stroll into town and Rapunzel is excited about everything she sees, just like Ariel was, and they also took a dance there.
Eugene's death scene seemed strongly reminiscent of the Beast's death in Beauty and the Beast. Even to the point that Rapunzel is leaning over him like Belle leaned over the Beast.
Rapunzel's first meeting with Flynn resembles a gender-flipped version of Beauty and the Beast as well when Beast comes before Belle from the shadows to the light.
Not to mention, Mother Gothel uses "be my guest" in her Villain Song. It's possible that this is another Beauty and the Beast shout-out, given the fact that Menken composed the music for both films.
Flynn and Rapunzel sitting on the floor and reading a book together during their Falling in Love Montage is reminiscent of Belle and Beast doing the same thing during "Something There".
Rapunzel and Flynn singing their two separate parts of "I See the Light" as thoughts they are thinking is very reminiscent of how "Something There" from Beauty and the Beast is sung, with both characters "thinking" at each other.
Pretty much the whole ordeal of the hero getting stabbed by the villain and dying from the wound, but then gets resurrected by the girl's love (with a little magic added in Tangled's version.) Also, the villain falls to his/her death.
When Rapunzel meets her parents for the first time, first she gets hugged by her mother. Similar thing happened in Sleeping Beauty.
Pinocchio can be seen in "I've Got A Dream", when the camera pans around.
What's really delicious about this is how the two songs are mirrors of each other in mood and emotional impact. "Out There" is dark, brooding, threatening, a brow-beating type song where Frollo forces Quasi to obey—basically, Scare 'Em Straight. "Mother Knows Best", save for the part at the end where she makes her "one request", is happy, bouncy, and light—vinegar versus honey. And that makes it all the more insidious and cruel.
Flynn said "I don't sing." in the same tone and expression as Robert did in Enchanted, and he then sings only emphasizing the Enchanted reference all the more.
This is all the funnier in the Latin American edition, where Flynn is voiced by Chayanne, a famous singer.
The entire scene is something of a Shout-Out, with a more cynical character watching in bemused exasperation as a more idealistic character leads a bunch of unlikely people in a cheerily optimistic musical number right in front of him.
Flynn's narration states that the kingdom is "a hop, skip, and a boatride" away from the magic flower. Except for the last word, this is actually the distance between Captain Hook's ship and the Lost Boys' hide-out: a hop, skip, and a jump away.
Hookhand is similar to Captain Hook, they both even play piano.
In the cave, there's a skeleton with a sword sticking out of it in the same pose as one of the skeletons in a certain ride.
Just like in Aladdin, there's a princess trapped inside her home who longs to go out until her 18th birthday, and then she meets a guy who happens to be a thief.
"I See the Light", the song on the boat before/during the mass-lantern release, was reminiscent of the Magic Carpet Ride ("A Whole New World") from Aladdin. Both tunewise and somewhere in the midst of the lyrics. Alan Menken made both scores, by the way.
In that song, Flynn sings "it's crystal clear", a line that is also sung by Jasmine in "A Whole New World".
And just after this moment, the Lovable Rogue is trapped by the bad guys.
Look closely at Gothel's dress. The entire thing is decorated with curly hearts... that are identical to the ones on the Kingdom Hearts logo. The design also incorporates what may be modified versions of the Unversed or Heartless sigils.
One of the Pub Thugs collects ceramic unicorns, and at the start of Flynn's prison escape he leaves one as a signal to Flynn. This is actually a Shout-Out to Gaff in Blade Runner who would leave pieces of origami as his caling card. At the end of the film he leaves Deckard a unicorn.
There are two lines in "I See The Light" that have the exact same melody and almost the same words as a line from A Whole New World: "And standing here,/ it's crystal clear/ I'm where I'm meant to be" "And now she's here/it's crystal clear/ I'm where I'm meant to go" compare with "But when I'm way up here/it's crystal clear/that now I'm in a whole new world with you." In addition, the very last note of the song is the same note from "A Whole New World".
Not really. Also the lyric is "Standing here,/ it's oh-h so clear/ I'm where I'm meant to be" for Rapunzel. The tune remains distinct (though they are both Award Bait Songs, so they'll be similar).
Rapunzel says "Don't freak out" and "It's complicated" to guess who.
When they first enter the city, in the background noise someone calls out "fresh cockles and mussels", and the background music turns into an Irish style melody. When combined it seems to be shouting out to the Irish folk song Molly Malone.
Hook Hand Thug loves to play Mozart, and this movie has some thematic elements that call out to Mozart's own opera "The Magic Flute". The whole of "I Got A Dream" resembles "Das Klinget So Herrlich" when Monostatos' slaves about to kill Papageno and Pamina suddenly burst into joy thanks to Papageno's magic glockenspiel. Also, "The Magic Flute" has its villainess as the Queen of the Night (often associated with the Moon onstage). Rapunzel, who is associated with the Sun is in fact the heroine of the story and therefore Queen of the Day!
While very likely a coincidence Mother Gothel's death scene may be a shout-out to the climax of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade in which the villain ages rapidly until he turns into dust