Friday, November 18, 2022


Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the meh-est one of all? Made for not even those of us who have actually been looking forward to it.

Rated PG for mild peril and language.


Enchanted was one of the biggest surprises of 2007. A Thanksgiving crowd-pleasing hit, it both skewered and lovingly embraced everything that makes Disney Princess Films both adorable and eye-rolling at the same time. Filled with hilarious jokes, ear-wormy Oscar-nominated songs, and star Amy Adams giving a tour de force as an animated princess come literally to life, Enchanted more than holds up 15 years later.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about its too-little-too-late sequel: Disenchanted. Completely giving in to sequelitis — along with a suprising amount of unmemorable songs — if this were the first film, no one would be surprised to see it released directly on Disney+. Adding insult to injury, director Adam Shankman is given a screenplay from Brigitte Hales that completely misses the mark and succumbs to nearly everything wrong with direct-to-video, err, streaming, Disney flicks.

It’s been 10 years since Giselle (Adams) found her happy ever after with Robert (Patrick Dempsey) and Morgan (Gabriella Baldacchino). Changes are on their way, and the family — including their new baby, Sophia (twins Mila and Lara Jackson) — heads off to find a new happy ever after in the suburb of Monroeville. But their new house is a dire fixer-upper, and none of them are happy with the move. Leave it to King Edward (James Marsden) and Queen Nancy (Idina Menzel) to build a portal to their backyard, and arrive to bestow upon Sophia an Andalasian wishing wand.

With Robert unhappy spending his new life commuting, Morgan having issues at school, and Giselle facing off against the “Queen” of Monroeville, Malvina (Maya Rudolph), Giselle uses the wand for herself to turn Monroeville into her own fairy tale land. But her selfish act comes with all the expected consequences, and soon, it’s up to Morgan to fend off her step-mother, before she is turned wicked, with Malvina setting her own sights on the wishing wand for her own dastardly deeds.

I have a history with Enchanted. As soon as I saw it the first time, I ran out and bought the soundtrack. It’s a favorite of mine and my wife’s as we danced to “So Close” at our wedding. This wasn’t a sequel we were waiting for, but it is the sequel you can expect after 15 years. Gone are the ear worms, the classic animation, and the hilarious self-deprecation. In comes a film I may not wind up ever watching again that’s full of cloying Disneyfied songs, cheap Disney Channel-style animation, and cliché indulgence.

There will undoubtedly be an audience for Disenchanted. If it gets anything right, it’s that it’s as family friendly as it gets. Which is a shame, because pandering to the adults is what made Enchanted the classic it still is today. Parents may have something new to stream this weekend, but there’s no repeat value here. My daughter had to go to bed before it was over, and I seriously doubt she’ll ask to finish it. Disenchanted is just meh, leaving us underwhelmed, with the film sadly only managing to live up to its title.

3 out of 5

blog comments powered by Disqus