Saturday, November 19, 2022



Years have passed since Giselle (Amy Adams) and Robert (Patrick Dempsey) decided to tie the knot. Morgan (Gabriella Baldacchino) is now an angsty teenager in a love-hate relationship with her stepmother. The family’s eventual move along with their new baby Sofia to the suburb of Monroeville does not help bridge the widening gap between the two. Enter King Edward (James Marsden) and Queen Nancy (Idina Menzel) of Andalasia who bring with them a housewarming gift, that of a magical wand that only a true daughter of the kingdom can use. Disenchanted with the ever changing dynamics of her life in suburbia, Giselle succumbs to the temptation of making a wish, making their lives less of a midlife crisis and more of a fairytale. Robert is suddenly fighting trolls instead of handling cases. Morgan is not passive-aggressive anymore and trapped in the poor stepdaughter trope, while Giselle gradually turns into the stereotypical wicked stepmother in loggerheads with now queen of Monroelasia Malvina Monroe (Maya Rudolph). This is surely NOT the happily ever after they were aiming for.

Well, that was a disappointment. Unfortunately, nostalgia was not enough to save Disenchanted from the plethora of issues hounding it. While we surely missed the characters after their 15-year hiatus, it seems obvious that this has been a passion project of sorts from the get-go. Sophomore slump? Unnecessary sequel? The fact that Disney decided to send it straight to Disney+ is quite telling, pretty much similar to straight-to-video sequels of popular Disney hits back in the day that you never even knew existed.

Or maybe not every Disney sequel can be Frozen 2? While Enchanted was rather successful in its own right when it was released in 2007, it just wasn’t the global box office juggernaut that Frozen was seven years later. Perhaps this is the reason why their respective sequels got different treatment as far as mode of release is concerned. In the end, Disenchanted felt disenchanting indeed, willingly embracing the same tropes its predecessor dared to subvert more than a decade ago before giving you a motherhood statement as an underwhelming ending.

Edward has no character evolution at all, which is just understandable. Robert’s story arc is logical but comes across as silly. How Nancy traded her real world sensibilities and how much of New York she had introduced to Andalasia would’ve been an interesting subplot, but conveniently brushed off because this is not her film. Instead, we are forced to focus on the wicked stepmother trope which defines Giselle’s story arc in this sequel, giving Amy Adams the chance to showcase her versatility in two totally opposite personalities of one character.

As for the soundtrack, it’s anybody's guess why none of the songs leave an impression despite Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz returning to write most of them. Menzel gets to sing two songs including one of his own entitled Love Power. While the song puts her vocal chops on full display and has some interesting crescendos, it just fails to connect somehow. Perhaps Disney should have Robert Lopez’s help to pen a song for her, given how his Let It Go and Into the Unknown did so well for her in her Frozen movies.

In the end, we can see the vision that the writers had for this sequel. This is the deconstruction of the fairy tale crafted in the first film, a reminder that happy endings are not really endings but rather the beginning of something more challenging. It’s too bad that they couldn’t have come up with a more solid storyline considering how awesome the cast members they’ve assembled are. In any case, thanks for the nostalgia trip as always, Disney, but maybe take some notes as to how it alone won’t suffice to carry a film.

0 creature(s) gave a damn:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Protected by Copyscape DMCA Copyright Detector

Book Review

Book Review

Book Review

Book Review