Review: Less than “Enchanted”

Taking place 15 years after the original film, “Disenchanted” — like many other low-quality Disney reboots — doesn’t have the same magic as the original


Disney Enterprises

Disney has a habit of making hit-or-miss sequels and prequels, and “Disenchanted,” released in November on Disney+, just doesn’t live up to the film that inspired it.

Beth Brackmann, Contributing Writer

On Nov. 18, the sequel to the popular movie “Enchanted,” titled “Disenchanted” was released with some negative reviews. With only a 40% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 5.8/10 stars on  IMDB, the movie definitely fell short of expectations. Disney has had a history of producing low quality sequels to their popular movies, with only a select few getting positive feedback. This movie is a perfect example of that. 

“Disenchanted” takes place 15 years after the events of the original film. After having a child Giselle and Robert decided that their Manhattan apartment is becoming too small, and life over all in the city is dragging them down. That’s when Giselle learns about a picturesque suburban town, Monroeville. Soon after getting a magic wand from their friends in Andalasia, Giselle wishes for a fairy life like the one she left behind. Though things start out fine, she soon starts to change to fill her role as an evil stepmother. 

“Disenchanted” was disappointing. Compared to the original, the movie isn’t even on the same level. Most of the characters have become unlikeable and bland, and don’t have the same charm as they had before. 

The idea for the plot is perfectly fine, and if it was done right would have made a great sequel, but unfortunately it wasn’t and now we’re just left with this below average sequel. Some parts of the plot make it seem like the director who wrote this movie never watched the original. For example, the end of “Enchanted” shows that Giselle opens up a clothing store, but that is never brought up in “Disenchanted.”

The antagonist is somewhat the character Malvina Monroe, played by Maya Rudolph, but honestly she doesn’t need to be in the film. It just feels like she is thrown into the plot. The only thing the character does is provide some motive for the evil Giselle. They don’t need two antagonists, the evil Giselle does more in the plot then the character who is meant to be the main antagonist. 

The references in this film are just so obvious, it’s annoying. The original takes basic ideas and topics from the other Disney princess and fairy tale stories. But this movie makes straight up references. For example at their new home they have three gardeners who are dressed in red, blue, and green that eventually turn into fairies who take care of the baby after Giselle’s wish. That’s an obnoxious reference to Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty.” Then there’s two sort of “henchmen” for Monroe, who eventually dress and act like the evil stepsisters from “Cinderella. “

Just like the unnecessary references there are a ton of unnecessary characters. Like there’s this scroll that comes with the wand describing the rules of using it. You see him for like a quarter of the film all together, and he just disappears. They never mention what happened to him, or why she had to come alive in the first place. Another character like this is Edgar, who is the barista for the town’s coffee shop. With the magic he becomes Monroe’s magic mirror like in “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” but again he doesn’t serve anything to plot and only has a few minutes of screen time tops.

 They also changed most of the primary characters’ personalities to be more fairy tale-like. This weakens the story a lot. They could have created so much emotion from the audience if Robert didn’t become a carbon copy of Prince Edward. If they kept Robert the same they could show how he feels about the magic world, and living in it. Along with this they could’ve shown how he felt about slowly watching his wife loss herself to the fairy tale stereotype. This could have caused a very emotional final act, and would allow the director to actually use his character, instead of throwing him into just a few scenes. Another character that has changed is Giselle. Her bubbly personality in the first movie was leveled out through some more serious scenes. She also had depth, she wasn’t a one note character like she is now. In this movie though she just comes across as annoying and pushy. 

The songs in this movie were also pretty bad. The original isn’t necessarily a musical, but the songs it does have are pretty good, these aren’t. This film went the musical route which is either a good idea or not, and it was not in this case. Most of the music just wasn’t good. Honestly it’s hard to remember any of the songs in this movie. After watching the original, its songs are stuck in your head for a few days, but these are forgettable. There’s nothing fun or memorable about these songs, since there are so many. The original movie’s few songs had visuals that went along with them and that aids in remembering those songs. All of the dance numbers in this movie felt the same. Not all of the songs are terrible but unfortunately most are. 

Overall “Disenchanted” is a sad, cheap excuse for a movie. It doesn’t live up to the first film which is really disappointing considering the first is such a good movie to watch. There were so many possible ways this plot could have gone that would have been better than this. It’s a shame that the movie isn’t better. 

“Disenchanted” is streaming now on Disney+.