It's been fifteen years since we were first introduced to Giselle and saw her get her happily ever after in Enchanted, swapping her fairy tale home of Andalasia for New York City in the process. It feels like a long time to wait for a return and that always comes with the trepidations of whether it'll be worth it. It brings me great pleasure to say that Disenchanted doesn't fall into any of those traps and it's the most welcome of returns for Giselle and other familiar faces.

Ten years after her happily ever after, Giselle (Amy Adams), Robert (Patrick Dempsey), and Morgan (Gabriella Baldacchino) move to a new house in the suburb of Monroeville with their newest addition. The community is overseen by Malvina Monroe (Maya Rudolph), who has nefarious intentions for the family. When problems arise, Giselle wishes that their lives were the perfect fairy tale. The spell backfires, with Giselle rushing to save her family and her homeland of the Kingdom of Andalasia before the clock strikes midnight.
Disenchanted kicks off with a minor recap before diving straight into what is now the present day for Giselle, Robert, Morgan and baby Sophia. They've outgrown their New York apartment, opting to move out of the city and into a spacious house in the suburbs. It's not long before Giselle's way of trying to make everyone's life perfect starts to grate on Morgan, a rift in their relationship causing Giselle to wish for a fairy tale life. This is where Disenchanted earns its stripes, choosing not to be a carbon copy of the original, instead going down a totally different path that may not live up to the incredible high standards of the first film, but more than warrants your attention as an entertaining family adventure.

Adam Shankman has dipped his toe in musicals before with Hairspray and Rock of Ages, and he shows himself to be more than capable of delivering fantastical musical numbers alongside an engaging narrative here. The wit is very much still there in the screenplay as they play on the tropes of Disney fairy tales, while the way the story pans out allows for some very welcome visitors from Andalasia as well as some drastic changes to characters, Giselle in particular.
You can sense the happiness of both returning and new cast members to be involved in such a fun fantasy film, Amy Adams leading the film with an utterly joyous turn as Giselle, her best performance in years. We know she's great at the innocent and naïve side to the character but she absolutely revels in becoming the wicked stepmother when things start to go awry, the scenes with her fleeting between the dual roles utterly hilarious. Patrick Dempsey willingly throws himself into a sillier role this time around and while he's good at it, the film could do with more James Marsden's King Edward acting the oaf. Maya Rudolph makes for a decent obstacle for Giselle to negotiate, their villainous sing-off being one of the highlights of the film, and Gabriella Baldacchino holds her own amongst a talented cast as Morgan.

Disenchanted is a film I hoped we'd see at some point, mainly because Enchanted is one Disney's most underrated films in my eyes. It's an added bonus that the film is of such a good standard because it could have easily gone horribly wrong. One of the only live action Disney films worth watching in all honesty.



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