Is this the second review in a row that deals with a sequel? Indeed it is. However, unlike Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, it’s sad for me to report that this one did not cut the mustard. Disenchanted was definitely highly anticipated; there were so many Disney fans that asked for the chance to see Giselle (Amy Adams) and her real world prince (Patrick Dempsey) once again. But is this what they had in mind? I’m not so sure.
In this sequel to the 2007 musical hit Enchanted, we re-join the fairy tale pair in modern day New York City… that is, until they move to upstate New York when they realise they are not happy. Yes, this world looked beautiful to Giselle when she first arrived, but since then she seems to have lost her magic. Figuratively, not literally. When the family move though, they begin to realise that this world is not quite so different to Giselle’s native Andalasia after all.
Right off the bat, I’ll just say this: this movie is a prime example of why you shouldn’t just make sequels based on fan pressure… which is very sad because I so wanted this to be good.
In actuality, I’m not exactly a huge fan of Enchanted myself; it was fun, it was well put together and a lot of fun, but it’s not as if I was one of those calling for this movie to be made because I loved the first one so much. Unfortunately, Disenchanted turned out to be a bit of a waste of time and effort, because it doesn’t even live up to the “okayness” of the first one. That being said, there are still some positives.
Firstly, Amy Adams seems like she could play this character while half asleep at this point – not once does she break character or step a toe out of line. Giselle is a character she knows inside out and it shows. Patrick Dempsey is back too, but has fairly little to do (although he does get to sing a little bit in this one at least) which is surprising. The addition of Maya Rudolph as the villain is a good one and she does bring some good comedy to the film, although she’s very Maya Rudolph throughout so basically she’s exactly what you’d expect. Therefore, whilst the cast is good, there’s nothing extraordinary going on in particular.
What lets this one down more than anything else is how messy the plot is. Coming in at just over 2 hours, it’s not only too long but it’s actually baffling as to why, since it’s a rather basic story that just seems to go on and on forever and ever. On top of that, the musical numbers are pretty standard Disney fodder, with only the duet between Adams and Rudolph being even slightly memorable. This is surprising since Alan Menken (Little Shop of Horrors, Hercules) was responsible for the music, but it’s as if he compiled these songs from the reject piles of his other movies. Harsh? Maybe. But true.
On the whole, there’s just not much going on here that you’ll remember come next week. There’s some fun animation and passable performances, but it feels as though this is where this franchise will end. And rightly so.
Disenchanted is available to stream on Disney+ in the UK.
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