anatomy of a Hallmark royal romance movie

Warning: high levels of snark and sarcasm from this point forward.  You Have Been Warned.

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There is a particularly delightful genre of Hallmark films that I’ve dubbed ‘royal romances’.  Though each of these films gives their own unique, spell-binding twist on the trope of ‘prince meets princesses’ there are some slight similarities between a few of these films if you dig deep enough into the subtext.  To save you from all that fuss and bother, I’ve done all the work for you!  So if Hallmark shows up at your door, asking you to write the script for their next royal romance blockbuster, this post has you covered.

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Our heroine – We’ll call her ‘Sam’ (short for Samantha, of course) because every Hallmark heroine needs an easy-to-forget-remember name.  She will be awkward, relatable, quirky, unique, ditzy, down-to-earth, prone to ramble and babble in the presence of princes, and may or may not be an unknown princess because her mother’s brother’s cousin’s nephew was the king of-  Well, we’ll get to that. (She’s probably lost both parents btw, but definitely one.)

Our hero – Kent Brentworthy the fifteenth.  Perfect teeth, perfect hair, perfect face, perfect stubble…this guy has it all.  Except a personality.  But Sam won’t care because one flash of his dimples and some mutterings about being a prince and he’ll have won her heart.  Until he loses it momentarily by talking about how women should conform to traditional female roles.

Other side of the love triangle – Actually, there will be two.  Lara Meangirl who is indubitably more royal than Sam and thus is a serious threat to Sam’s budding romance with Kent.  The other will be Sam’s boyfriend from back in New York who comes all the way to Europe to beg for her heart and hand. (This will lead to some glowering by Kent.)  If you’re really lucky and the budget is big enough, you can squeeze in a local guy, ridiculously handsome, who builds leather clocks or wooden shoes.  If he’s handsome enough, Sam could end up giving up the prince and marrying Handsome Leatherworker.

Heroine’s POC bff who gives advice in probably the first scene of the film and is never heard from again – I pretty much just said it all.  Who needs diversity in Eastern Europe???

Sweet, perky maid who gives Sam all the advice she needs – She’ll be a brunette (to contrast Sam’s inevitable blondeness).

Mean, vaguely threatening prime minister who tries to dig up dirt on Sam – Every fairy tale needs a good old fashioned villain.  Or at least someone with a threatening, graying goatee.  He’s probably scheming with the Mean Housekeeper, btw.

Elderly hilarious British butler who provides tidbits of wisdom to Kent and Sam respectively and is really the hero of the film – This character will be the fan-favorite, especially if you give him some comedy scenes where The Proper British Dude starts break-dancing or something. (Because Sam is starting to change everyone and everything around the castle.)

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Sam is a twenty-something female writer/reporter/journalist who has a hard time finding love.  Or keeping love.  Or clutching onto it with both hands wrapped in velcro.  She comes home one day to find a thick letter (delivered by Old British Butler) that either a) invites her to Gorovia for some inexplicable reason or b) reveals that she is indeed the long-lost princess of Gorovia.

Upon arrival, she instantly bumps into a stunningly handsome man in an impeccably tailored suit.  She literally bumps into him.  Much embarrassment ensues, but only on her side.  He seems faintly amused but excuses himself as quickly as possible.  “Boy, he was handsome,” she thinks.  “Who could he be???”

At the palace (the interiors of which do not match the stock footage outside), she meets Perky Maid, Mean Housekeeper, and Vaguely Threatening Prime Minister.  She also literally bumps into the same guy again only, GASP, it’s PRINCE KENT.  Who is visiting from a neighboring kingdom (called Hofferlotosidifjowovia – it really doesn’t matter what the kingdoms are called so long as they all end with ‘ovia’).  More embarrassment ensues and Sam quickly escapes to her room with the help of Perky Maid.

Sam gasps over her room, even though it doesn’t look all that great.

Awkward commercial break. (I won’t point out all the commercial breaks in this because they will be frequent and awkward in the actual film.)

Next morning, Sam awkwardly does some stuff with politics, including suggestions that the patriarchy be overthrown.  This is met with horror, so she escapes for a horse ride with Prince Kent.  It’s raining but that doesn’t deter them.  He ends up talking about how women – even princesses – should get married ASAP and raise children while their husbands take care of politics.  Sam vows to hate him forever and rides home alone.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister is working to dig up dirt about Sam.  A ball is planned (double points if you can make it a masquerade ball) and Sam wears a ballgown that is spectacularly underwhelming.  I mean, she’s a princess!

You’re expecting this:

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And you get this:

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Sam and Kent dance together.  All is forgiven.  Kent is just about to announce their engagement when the Prime Minister shows up, all out of breath, and declares that Lara Meangirl (idk where she came from but whatever) is closer to the throne than Sam and Sam is an imposter.  Sam is stunned and runs away, back to her home in America. (Without waiting to hear explanations from anyone because quirky, down-to-earth people like Sam don’t do that.) 

When she gets there, her old boyfriend who dumped her, is waiting.  They’re about to announce their engagement when Kent bursts into the hotel’s party room, soaking wet (it was raining outside again), and sweeps Sam off her feet.  “I don’t care that you’re not a princess!” he exclaims.  “You’ll always be my princess!”  Then he slips a fifty-carat diamond ring on her finger and all the guests who were supposed to applaud her engagement to Loser Boyfriend applaud her engagement to Kent.  Because princes are better than ordinary dudes.

They kiss.  And the world basically explodes from the power of that kiss.

Whether there’s a wedding after this pivotal scene or not depends on the movie’s budget, but if there is a wedding, it’ll be the best part of the film.  And Sam will definitely wear an underwhelming wedding dress.

You’re expecting this:

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And you get this:

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The End

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  • Make sure there’s a Kent-teaches-Sam-archery scene.  Especially if she already knows how to hit the bulls-eye and shows him up after his cringy, here-let-me-put-my-hands-on-your-waist-to-steady-you lesson.
  • Have Sam (Kent optional) tour Gorovia to see some insulting Eastern European cultural and architectural stereotypes.  Bonus points if a lisping child gives Sam a bouquet and kicks Kent in the leg. (If she kicks Kent, it has to be before he makes up with Sam for being all chauvinist.  This will make the audience laugh.)
  • If the casting choice for Prince Kent is hot enough, you’ll probably get a sequel deal out of it, ‘kay?

So now you have the basic ingredients for a Hallmark royal romance movie!  Have fun writing!

Eva

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movie review: mulan

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Fearful that her ailing father will be drafted into the Chinese military, Mulan (Ming-Na Wen) takes his spot — though, as a girl living under a patriarchal regime, she is technically unqualified to serve. She cleverly impersonates a man and goes off to train with fellow recruits. Accompanied by her dragon, Mushu (Eddie Murphy), she uses her smarts to help ward off a Hun invasion, falling in love with a dashing captain along the way.

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‘Mulan’ has always been one of those movies I enjoyed watching but didn’t really love.  I lumped it in with other [personal] Disney disappointments like ‘The Little Mermaid’ and ‘Pocahontas’.  But last night I watched it and, well, I kind of adored it.  And now I don’t get why it isn’t more popular!

For starters, the characters are something special.  The only complaint I have about Mulan is that sometimes her voice actress doesn’t seem to be a very good actress. 😛  But other than that, Mulan is a young woman with a fierce love for her family – something even stronger than her fierce warrior skills.  I love her compassion and bravery.  I love her.  And her dad is probably the best Disney dad ever. (All their scenes together make me tear up.  Except maybe the very first one, ’cause it’s pretty funny.)

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I can’t get over how much I liked Sheng on this rewatch!  He’s such a well-developed character.  He wants his father’s approval, he wants to protect his troops, he wants to understand this weird guy, Ping.  You can almost see the conflict in his mind when he’s supposed to execute Mulan – loyalty to his country’s laws or loyalty to what he knows is right?

(By the way, I take issue with what that plot summary says about Mulan falling in love with Sheng ‘along the way’.  I personally don’t see that she fell in love with him, except maybe at the verrrry end.  And even then it was more of a, “I could like this guy if I had the chance”.  Not actual love.)

"You fight good." #Mulan

Mushu still irks me at times, but he can be legitimately funny.  And he’s not half as annoying as Olaf, so that’s a definite plus.

The artistry that went into ‘Mulan’ is astounding.  Every time there’s smoke or steam or what have you, it’s rendered so artistically.  And who can forget the iconic shot of the Huns spilling over the snowy clifftop? *literal chills*

And then there are the songs.  They’re a little different than the typical Disney songs because there are no villain songs, no love duet…just two funny songs, the “I want” song, and THE SINGLE MOST EPIC SONG DISNEY EVER PRODUCED. (Jerry Goldsmith’s score is also worth a listen.)

I got "I'll Make A Man Out Of You"! Which Disney Song Should Be Your Theme Song? | Quiz | Disney Playlist

The themes in ‘Mulan’ – loyalty, family, doing one’s duty – all strike a chord in me.  Now, more so than ever.  Which is probably why I like it so much.  There are moments of humor throughout ‘Mulan’ but I think it’s Disney’s most grown-up princess movie.  It’s also one of the most underrated.  If you don’t enjoy ‘Mulan’ and haven’t seen it in a while, I highly suggest you give it another try.  You might be pleasantly surprised.

Have you watched ‘Mulan’?  What do you think of it?

Eva

gort in ‘the day the earth stood still’ (1951)

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check out the others posts in the blogathon here.

“Gort!  Klaatu barada nikto!”

Some of the most iconic words in science fiction history.  But the movie they come from isn’t as well known, which is a shame.  It might be slightly cheesy at times, but ‘The Day the Earth Stood Still’ is a first-rate sci-fi film that can still resonate with audiences today (I know that because it resonates with me, lol).  And one reason for its greatness is the robot, Gort.

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Aside from the obvious fact that Gort is portrayed by a man in a rubbery robot suit, he’s a pretty chilling…antagonist? (He’s definitely not a villain.)

Yes, the special effects might be a bit, um, lacking, but when the spaceship lands in the ever familiar Washington D.C. area, Gort steps out, and Bernard Hermann’s chilling score plays, it’s pretty much impossible not to feel a little tingle of fear. 

Gort is able to destroy guns, tanks, and people with little to no effort.  Once he’s effectively cowed the crowd, he stands still.  No one can move him, no one can dent his ‘body’.  So they end up putting him in a case made of special plastic.  Nothing can break that – or so they think.  Gort does eventually end up breaking out, though, and the results are…interesting.  I won’t spoil anything in case you haven’t seen the movie yet!

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what is that random guy doing there?

But I do want to talk about three ways in which Gort is unique from most robots in the movies. (The third reason is kind of a spoiler, just so you know.)

He was given unlimited power over his creators.  Yep.  Unlike other stories where the robots/AI are either completely subservient to their creators or have destructively taken over (usually leaving a dystopian world in their wake), Gort and his ‘brothers’ have been given control over their alien masters.  Why?  Well, the next point will address that.

He has a sense of morality.  Apparently, Klaatu’s countrymen were able to create robots with a sense of right and wrong.  They then set those robots to police their countries and cities and destroy anyone who transgressed.  So yeah.  I mean, most filmic robots do have a sense of right and wrong (though, in real life, they wouldn’t) so maybe this point isn’t as unique.  But Gort was literally created to have a moral code (that’s his purpose) so…still interesting.

He can bring people back from the dead.  Whether it’s something that Gort himself (itself?) does or only his knowledge of alien technology that allows him to operate a life-giving machine, he still brings a certain character back from the dead.  (Obviously, this movie has some intriguing/problematic theological implications.)  And again, that makes Gort a very interesting robot.

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So, have you seen ‘The Day the Earth Stood Still’?  What are your thoughts on Gort and his powers?

Eva

‘the hunchback of notre dame’ live action dream cast

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by Katie @ I’m Charles Baker Harris (And I Can Read) (blue) and Eva (purple)

A few days ago Katie and I were chatting on Facebook and I mentioned that Disney is planning to do a live-action remake of ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’ (are we even surprised anymore?).  We chatted a bit about who Disney would cast and then had the idea of collabing on a blog post talking about our dream cast.

IT’S GONNA BE EPIC.

Epic is the word  😀 I haven’t seen too many Disney animated films, but ‘Hunchback’ is very, very special to me, as it is to Disney fans around the world . . . and deservedly so.  It’s a beautiful story and it deserves the very best live-action version Disney can produce. So if they could just, y’know, take note of our dream cast, that’d be great.  😉

The Narrator/Clopin – Lin-Manuel Miranda

Clopin. Hunchback of Notre Dame
aka most powerful line in the musical.

Because in what universe is this not perfect????  Seriously though, I feel like this dream casting is actually possible and I would loooove to see it.  Lin is hugely talented; he’d fit the role of the mysterious and dramatic Clopin incredibly well. (I think Disney would beef up the role if they cast him because who doesn’t need more Lin-Manuel Miranda in their movie?)

Quasimodo – Andrew Keenan-Bolger

"Quasi, take it from an old spectator. Life's not a spectator sport. If watchin' is all you're gonna do, then you're gonna watch your life go by without ya." - The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

Ahhhhhhhhh, Andrew Keenan-Bolger . . . if you’ve seen him in Newsies or Tuck Everlasting, you know why we adore him so, the precious bean.  (The smile alone is worth a million bucks.) More importantly, you know the man can SING.  And you know he can play physically disabled characters with a convincing mixture of vulnerability & spirit (Crutchie!!!)  We think he’d be a perfect Quasimodo.

Frollo – Peter Capaldi

For the people who have never read Kingdom Keepers: Power Play, this is the man how tried to kill Willa. He is from The Hunchback of Noter Dame, and he is an OT. Just thought you should know.

Tell me you don’t want to see Peter Capaldi’s face twisted with rage and agony and desperate desire in a firelit room with crazy shadows morphing into demons and pitchforks and what not.  GO ON AND TELL ME. ‘Cause I won’t believe you. 😛 This guy was born to play Frollo. Eva and Katie have spoken, and it must and shall be so.

Esmeralda – Zendaya

Esmeralda #esmeralda #disney

No, Zendaya isn’t Romani.  And I respect the opinion that this fact could disqualify her.  But, as a person of color, I believe she could bring the requisite personal experience of racial oppression to the role of Esmeralda–and, guys, I’m just really really really in love with her singing okay.  I mean???  Greatest Showman???  A little movie y’all may or may not have heard of???  If I could hear that soft, husky voice of hers do the high note at the end of “God Help the Outcasts” I would die happy and never ask for anything more in this world.  

[I’m kidding.  Kind of.]

Phoebus – Tom Felton

Day 9 Favorite Couple: Esmeralda and Phoebus. I just love their sarcastic attitude towards each other. They're absolutely adorable without being lovey dovey. They fight with each other mentally and physically but in a playful way. It's just wonderful to watch!

Yes, I admit that this casting was based on my not-so-secret liking for Tom Felton.  But you’ve got to admit it’s a good idea! He’s blond, for one thing, and for another I could see him playing up the jerk side of Phoebus a little (which is more accurate to the book) while still being super sweet in the end. ❤

Victor, Hugo, and Laverne (aka the gargoyles) – (respectively) Alan Tudyk, Hank Azaria, and Angela Lansbury

1884. "better to beg forgiveness than ask permission."

I’m actually hoping that Disney excises the gargoyles in favor of some toned-down, mood-appropriate comic relief (maybe Lin’s Clopin) but if they decide not to…I have the perfect voice cast. *smirks*  Alan Tudyk, Hank Azaria, and Angela Lansbury are all seasoned voice actors and Tudyk and Lansbury have already voiced characters in Disney movies.

But I really hope there’s no need for them. *winks*

The Archdeacon – Leslie Odom Jr.

Now you would add this child's blood to your guilt on the steps of Notre Dame!

This may seem weird because Leslie Odom Jr. is a person of color and the Archdeacon is very much French/“white,” but, fellas, I just can’t think of another actor I’d rather see in this role.  I love everything about him. I love his calming, yet imposing, presence and his soothing voice. I think he’d make an incredibly memorable Archdeacon; and I would die to see him confront Peter Capaldi as Frollo:  “You never can run or hide what you’ve done from the eyes of Notre Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame…”  

Quasimodo’s mother – Gal Gadot

No role is too small to escape the scrutiny of Eva and Katie!  Muahahaha. We both think that Gal Gadot is perfect to play Quasimodo’s mother.  With her accent and dark hair, she could be a believable Gypsy. And her natural charm and warmth would make her death all the more tragic.

Plus, we just really, really like Gal Gadot. 😉

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So, do you agree with our casting choices?  Who do you hope to see in Disney’s live-action ‘Hunchback of Notre Dame’?

Eva (& Katie)

ranking every Dreamworks Animation film I’ve seen

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A while back I did this with Pixar movies and it was really fun.  So today I’m here to rank every Dreamworks Animation film I’ve had the pleasure (or pain) of watching.  I was surprised, actually, by how many I’ve seen.  There are some excellent films on this list…and some not so excellent ones.  So join me as I scientifically rank each one from least- to most-liked.

(After I carefully ranked this list, I realized that I forgot about ‘Road to El Dorado’ (2000).  And I’m NOT going to go mess up my rankings for it.  Let’s just say it’s in the bottom half because of mehness.)

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18. ‘Antz’ (1998) – I have nothing good to say about this movie.  It was boring, had several instances of profanity (I tolerate profanity in adult movies, but when it’s something supposedly meant for little kids…no thank you), and it’s something I’ll never watch again.

17. ‘Shark Tale’ (2004) – Forgettable.  I hardly remember a thing about it, except that I didn’t enjoy watching it.

16. ‘Bee Movie’ (2007) – Okay, so I’ll admit that this was a mostly entertaining one-time watch.  But not much more than that.

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15. ‘Monsters Vs. Aliens’ (2009) – There wasn’t much that stood out to me in this movie, but the voice cast was fun and I did enjoy seeing the various monsters. (Reminded me a little of Monsters Inc.)

14. ‘Mr. Peabody and Sherman’ (2014) – The problem with a lot of the movies in the bottom half of this list is that they’re entertaining one time…and pretty boring all the others.  A good movie (animated or not) should have a story and characters that hold up to multiple viewings.  And this movie doesn’t. (But some of the jokes are pretty on point.)

13. ‘Turbo’ (2013) – The first time I watched ‘Turbo’ I’m not even sure I watched it all the way through.  And I don’t think I’ve watched it all the way through since.  But I want to!  It looks like a fun riff on ‘Cars’ with some great supporting characters.  It isn’t higher on the list simply because I don’t know it very well.

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12. ‘Home’ (2015) – While this movie has gotten a little old, that’s because I’ve seen it so many times.  There are many heartwarming moments sprinkled among the action scenes and Oh is the best.

11. ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ (2016) – Every single Kung Fu Panda movie has a place in my heart.  But I don’t remember much about this one, unfortunately.  It was great to see how Po has grown throughout the trilogy.  Even though he might seem like the same big, silly panda, he has matured.

10. ‘Puss in Boots’ (2011) – This one is sort of a nostalgic favorite for me.  I watched it a bunch of times when I was younger and it’s still fun.  A little inappropriate at times, but fun.

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9. ‘Shrek’ (2001) – Before I watched ‘Shrek’, if you had told me that it would be in the top half of this list, I would have laughed.  The Shrek franchise has always been one of those things I was sure I’d hate – if I ever experienced it for myself.  But I’ve now seen the first movie three times and want to watch the others.  It’s not perfect or anything, but there are some genuinely funny and poignant moments.  And I adore the soundtrack.

8. ‘Rise of the Guardians’ (2012) – Every time I watch this movie, I wish I liked it better than I do.  It’s a great premise with truly likable characters and a creepy villain.  But there are too many instances of deus ex machina for me to believe the plot or become emotionally invested.

7. ‘Kung Fu Panda 2’ (2011) – While not as good as the first movie, ‘Kung Fu Panda 2’ is a great sequel.  I personally prefer Shen to Tai Lung (as a villain) and, let’s be real, any excuse to spend time in this franchise’s universe is AWESOME.

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6. ‘Megamind’ (2010) – THIS IS WHEN IT GETS IMPOSSIBLE.  Because the top six are, well, my top six.  And I love them all dearly.  HOW CAN I CHOOSE.  I put ‘Megamind’ here just because it feels a liiiiittle more formulaic than the other five, though it’s still fresh, funny, and surprisingly deep at times.  I’d watch ‘Megamind’ any day of the week.

5. ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ (2010) – I have seen it a lot, you guys.  It’s gotten a little boring.  But it’s still a fantastic movie that I feel is hugely original and well-done.  Dreamworks got soooo close to the quality of a Pixar hit with this one.

4. ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’ (2014) – Basically, they took the first movie and piled on a million more feels, dragons, and stunning locales.  So, pretty much the perfect movie?

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3. ‘The Croods’ (2013) – Literally can’t even.  First of all, this movie is gorgeous.  Secondly, Nicholas Cage BRINGS IT with the voice acting.  Thirdly, “…and she flew”.  And lastly, IT MADE ME CRY SO HARD MY HEART STILL HURTS.

2. ‘The Prince of Egypt’ (1998) – What is this perfection I see???  The songs!  The fact that it’s super respectful of the Bible!  Moses and Tzipporah!  THE SONGSSSSS.  I almost can’t believe I’m not putting it at first place.  But that honor is reserved for…

1. ‘Kung Fu Panda’ (2008) – I feel like this movie isn’t the best that Dreamworks has put out, but it’s my favorite.  Where to begin?  Oh, maybe with the soundtrack (beautiful and thrilling in turn).  Or Tai Lung’s escape.  Or how Shifu is the absolute BOSS.  Or the story, which may be a little overdone (basic hero’s journey), but it still touches your heart.  ‘Kung Fu Panda’ has it all.  It deserves top spot.

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Do you agree with my rankings?  What’s your favorite Dreamworks Animation movie?

Eva

i think New Disney is amazing

This blog post was inspired by the awesomeness that is this blog post.  Go read it!

Disneyland - every weekend from now until New Years @Tim Mather? Free entrance to the Disney parks is one of the many amazing perks to being a part of the Disney corporation family.

I only (regularly) watched three Disney movies growing up (besides live action classics like ‘Swiss Family Robinson’): ‘Winnie the Pooh’ (the one that mashes up a bunch of shorts), ‘The Great Mouse Detective’, and ‘Robin Hood’.  I wasn’t allowed to watch Disney princess movies.  And you know what?  I survived. (I played outside a lot, tbh.)

The first Disney princess movie I watched was ‘Tangled’ and I was in love.  It made me laugh so hard, it made me cry so hard…to me, it was the most perfect film in the world. (I still remember my obsession with it.  It’s hardly died down.)  I watched it a million times and somehow I’m still not sick of it.

"I See The Light" from Tangled will play at my wedding<<< yeeeessssss

Anyway, it was still a few years before I was allowed to watch alll the other Disney princess movies but when I did, I was kind of…disappointed?  So many of the classic Disney films were just kind of limp and boring.  They weren’t as vibrant and interesting as ‘Tangled’ and ‘Frozen’ (which I’d also discovered a little earlier).  Now, I don’t like ‘Frozen’ much anymore, but back then I loved it about the same as ‘Tangled’ and thought it was infinitely preferable to ‘Cinderella’, ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarves’, ‘Mulan’, ‘The Little Mermaid’, etc.

(I do love ‘Beauty and the Beast’ and ‘Aladdin’ though.)

I think it’s nostalgia that makes a lot of the old Disney movies so popular.  Like, I watched ‘The Lion King’ recently and, while it was good, I didn’t think it was as great as everyone says.  And that’s how I feel about so many of the movies that came from Disney’s golden age.  Plus, to return to the nostalgia thing, there are Disney movies I love that, objectively, aren’t great films but I still love them – so I really think I’m right about why a lot of people adore classic Disney.

Day 26; sadest death. Mufasa hands down.  Even cried when I saw the Lion King on Broadway.
even though I don’t love the movie, this still got to me.

Basically, I’m really happy with Disney’s newer films.  ‘Big Hero 6’ is a cinematic triumph, ‘Moana’ and ‘Tangled’ are epic Disney princess films, ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ is incredible…and then there are the live-action remakes.  ‘Cinderella’ (2015) is one of those movies where I can’t even.  It’s so sumptuous and feelsy and brilliant.  I CAN’T.  And ‘The Jungle Book’ (2016) impressed me so much when I saw it.  Awesomeness.

I think that every generation has their favorite Disney movies.  Sometimes it depends on what decade you grew up in and sometimes it depends on parents who don’t let you watch certain movies until you’re a certain age. 😉  But whatever the case, we all have our favorites and I don’t think anyone should make anyone else feel bad for liking (or not liking) a certain ‘kind’ of Disney. 

We’re all different.  We’re all Disney.

#fitness repin, share, like, and stay fit! :)

Eva

eighteen awesome movies I watched in 2018

Like my last post, but movies. 😉

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~Apollo 13 (1995) – Oh my goodness, this is such a nail-biting, well made movie.  Incredible performances and one of the tensest, most emotional endings I’ve ever seen on film.  Tom Hanks is <3.

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~Jumanji (1995) – Robin Williams was a brilliant human being and I had so much fun with this movie.  Again, a great ending!

~Sky High (2005) – YASSSS.  This movie is ALL THE THINGS for me.  Superheroes, supervillains, cheesy teen romance, a heartwarming plot, and so much more.  Definitely a winner.

~Anna and the King (1999) – I prefer this film to ‘The King and I’, probably because it’s more Serious and I gravitate toward Serious, Slightly Depressing movies. (I, um, actually watched this one because of *cough* Tom Felton *cough*, but I loved the movie as a whole.)

~The Hasty Heart (1949) – Richard Todd’s heartbreaking (yet amazing) performance alone makes this movie worth seeing.  It’s a gentle, sad story about a Scottish soldier who…well, you’ll just have to see it.

~The Greatest Showman (2017) – THIS IS THE GREATEST SHOW.  Literally.

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~The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) – My introduction to the Spiderverse!  Andrew Garfield is completely adorkable as Peter Parker and, as origin stories go, this movie is worth more than one viewing.

~Coco (2017) – Actual favorite movie of 2018, not gonna lie.  Every element in this film comes together so beautifully: characters, a twisty plot, the MUSIC, and Pixar feels.  I can’t watch ‘Coco’ often enough.

~Jurassic Park (1993) – Ahhhhhh.  LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT.  Absolute best.

~Wonder (2017) – The first time I watched this movie I was kind of ‘meh’ about it.  But the second time, I bawled my way through the whole thing because don’tcha know it’s gorgeous and feelsy and the characters are heart-grabbing?

~A Monster Calls (2016) – This movie took my heart, twisted it, and never quite gave it back.  But I still love it.

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~Earth to Echo (2014) – Don’t listen to the critics on this one!  Filmed as a homage to films like ‘E.T.’ and ‘Stand By Me’, ‘Earth to Echo’ is a found footage film with sweet characters and great CGI.

~A Quiet Place (2018) – Probably my second favorite film of 2018.  I was expecting a bleak survival-horror film with cardboard characters and too many jump scares.  What I got was a starkly beautiful look at the power of family. (And the characters are anything but cardboard.)

~Napoleon Dynamite (2004) – I have no idea why this movie is on this list but there’s just something about its weirdness…

~Annie (2014) – This film is like a big hug and a bowl of chicken noodle soup on a cold day.  Plus, it’s adorable.  The songs are killer – in my opinion, THIS is the definitive version of Annie (character and musical both).

~The Breakfast Club (1985) – About halfway through TBC I texted a good friend (who’d recommended the film to me) freaking out.  I was like “OH MY GOODNESS JOHN BENDER OH MY GOODNESS”.  Because, yeah, #majorcrushhere.  And it was fun getting all the Psych references.

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~Little Women (2018) – I gushed about this film here.

~The Eagle (2011) – I looooove everything about this movie (mostly Jamie Bell, though).  Watching ‘Ben-Hur’ as a kid fostered my love of stories set in ancient Rome and even though most of this film takes place in ancient Britain, it’s still awesome.  I love the soundtrack too!

(Also, shout-out to the three Walden Media Narnia films.  They all have flaws but the casting is ON POINT, as is the music, and I adore the films when they’re taken as a whole.  Just not always separately.  If that makes sense.)

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What are some great movies you watched this year?

Eva