Has the sequel left us ‘Disenchanted’?


Megan McKay, Staff writer

Disney has recently released a long-awaited sequel to its famous fairy tale classic film “Enchanted.” The original film, starring Amy Adams and Patrick Dempsey, premiered in 2007 at the London Film Festival. The film was incredibly well-received and became very popular, earning around $340 million worldwide at the box office. The musical romcom was praised by critics and earned a whopping 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics and fans alike recognized the film’s unique concept and dazzling performances by Hollywood and Broadway royalty, including stars such as Idina Menzel and James Marsden. The original film was directed by Kevin Lima, who was shockingly not asked to direct the sequel after producing a very successful film. Lima told the Hollywood Reporter that not being asked to direct the sequel was “Hollywood Politics.” Lima admitted to being nervous to see the new take, and his absence from the sequel may have altered the final production more than we could imagine.

After 15 years, the sequel, “Disenchanted,” was released Nov. 18 on Disney+. The film currently has an abysmal Rotten Tomatoes score of 40%. The new film has not received nearly the same amount of positivity as the fish-out-of-water fairy tale comedy of the original. The new storyline is definitely not as unique as the original, but it has an interesting plot about looking for long-lasting happiness following a ‘happily ever after’ out of New York City. I personally thought the beginning was very intriguing despite many claiming that the film is not unique. The songs are not as catchy, but I thought Maya Rudolph in an evil queen role was the perfect addition to the cast. The duet between Rudolph and Adams was enticing and memorable. The first film had three Oscar nominations, which highlights the memorable tunes’ impact. The songs do not have the same story-building characteristics as those of the first film. However, I liked how Morgan, who was just a little girl in “Enchanted,” is all grown up and has a storyline and personality of her own. She has a significant role in the film, especially in a crossover with the animated land of Andalasia.

The strength of “Disenchanted” understandably is this excellent cast having a lot of fun with these exaggerated characters that take on classic fairy tale roles in the modern world. I thought the cast was the best part of the film, but the story was just a little dragged out for my taste. The film brought a magical world into something more mundane in the sequel, which I thought was interesting because they spun off the idea of a fairy tale. I like the references present from other Disney stories and how Giselle laments that she is becoming the villain to her own stepdaughter. I believe many critics were too harsh on the movie. For example, Forbes described the film saying, “‘Disenchanted’ is a little bit less than ‘Enchanted’ in just about every way imaginable.” It is true that it does not have the same originality and magic, but it still has many fun moments. Some can argue “Enchanted” was one of Disney’s best movies of the 21st century, and it would clearly be difficult to surpass such an iconic film.

Admittedly, “Disenchanted” doesn’t compare to the original’s memorable choreography and songs. The new, more modern storyline was a good take on the idea of fairy tales in the modern world; I personally just missed the wittiness from the first that accompanied a princess in New York City. “Disenchanted” is worth the watch for loyal Disney fans who are interested in the continuation of its predecessor and a film filled with a lot of nostalgia. Fans will truly fall in love with the characters even if they dislike the direction of the film.