Anne Hathaway, the delightful star of THE PRINCESS DIARIES, is Ella in the charming fairy tale adventure ELLA ENCHANTED. On the day of her birth, Ella is given a gift by her Fairy Godmother -- the gift of obedience, which ... more »is also a curse. Under no circumstances can Ella refuse anything she is asked to do, no matter how wicked it may be. Tired of being taken advantage of, Ella, with a talking book as her companion, leaves home to find her Fairy Godmother and return her unwanted gift. This simple errand soon turns into an amazing journey filled with ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, elves, and the plotting of Prince Charmont's evil uncle who wants to take over the Crown and rule the kingdom. Bursting with colorful characters, music, wit, and whimsy, ELLA ENCHANTED is a truly enchanting and heartwarming tale that will captivate the entire family.« less
Jan B. from STATEN ISLAND, NY Reviewed on 4/20/2010...
My granddaughter really loved this movie. I was watching her watching it - and loved how she was excited, really engaged in it and, at one point, even in tears because she thought what was happening was so unfair. She is only 7 and the range of emotions she experienced was quite amazing.
4 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Shim F. Reviewed on 2/18/2008...
Anne Hathaway, is soo good as Ella in the movie.
This movie is soo funny.
But if you watch it too many times you might get sick of it.
It's a sweet fairy tale story.
It shows that if you put your mind to something the
possibilities are enless.
And that dreams can come true!!!
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
A high energy family-friendly delight of a film!!
randomartco | Greater Washington D.C. area | 04/13/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Not your typical Cinderella story...What do you get when you mix a bit of fairy tale-Cinderella world with some Shrek, throw in some Princess Bride, a little bit of Disney's Robin Hood (see Hester the snake), along with a little singing, and some random modern-day references thrown in for good measure? You get Ella Enchanted, Miramax's newest gem of a film, narrated by Eric Idle and starring the lovely Anne Hathaway and the dreamy Hugh Dancy. Ella of Frell (Anne Hathaway) has a gift. Er, I mean, a curse. A gift, a curse, it all depends on how you look at it: no matter what you tell Ella to do, she must obey. A rather capricious fairy named Lucinda (Vivica A. Fox) gave baby Ella the "gift of obedience": anything spoken to Ella as a command, she must automatically do. Fast forward a few years: Ella is now a young lady, and no one except her aunt Mandy (Minnie Driver) knows about this gift/curse. Not even her best friend and fellow civil rights activist Arieda (played by "Bend It Like Beckham's" Parminder K. Nagra) is aware of her "problem." When her father brings home a wicked new stepmother (Joanna Lumley) and two evil stepsisters, Hattie (Lucy Punch) and Olive (Jennifer Higham), Ella must deal with their demanding ways, hopefully without giving away her secret!Her stepsister Hattie is the very obsessive and very active president of the Prince Charmont fan club! She and her friends go absolutely ga-ga, every time they even think of the hunky prince (much less when they see him). Prince "Char" (Hugh Dancy) as they lovingly call him, is the heir apparent to the throne currently held for him by his evil uncle Edgar (Cary Elwes). The coronation day coming soon, and the kingdom in a bit of upheavel due to the heavy handed rule of Edgar, ogres, giants, and elves alike are all ready for a change! But will everyone accept Prince Charmont as their new king? One magical day when Ella and Prince Charmont cross paths, it is love at first sight for Prince Char. But the feisty and proud Ella is not so quick to fall for the prince; she is sure he is as unfeeling and uncaring as his uncle is. And since Ella actively fights for ogres' rights, along with any other magical creature in her kingdom (giants, elves, etc.), she wants nothing to do with the handsome Char. But when their paths keep crossing again and again...what's a girl to do!?!And so Ella of Frell sets out to find her fairy godmother Lucinda, to ask her to take back her "gift" of obedience, armed with Mandy's boyfriend book named Benny (who can picture anyone, anywhere) and elf pal Slannen, they encounter much along the way (including Prince Char!). They reach the land of the giants only to discover that Lucinda has already left, and Ella is forced by her obedience gift to stay and sing for the giants (her rendition of "Someone to Love," is entertaining and very well done!). But when Ella is finally commanded to do something that tests her very will...can she find Lucinda in time? Will she end up doing something she will forever regret?Content: This film had very little objectionable content: there were a few general references that would be above most children's heads, very little language (a few words), and only some mild violence. Given a PG rating: "For some crude language and violence." A young girl (with some help) defeats ogres and fights various magical creatures, giants are shown slaving in a field, someone is "poisoned," and a giant falls in love with an elf. A high energy family-friendly film that reminds you again, why every girl waits for her prince and wishes for that happily ever after (but has some serious fun in the process!). The modern day references did not detract from the story at all, but added a bit of fun and light-hearted teasing to an entertaining movie. I laughed and laughed at the sometimes silly and sometimes serious jokes that poked fun at various modern day places and things. One particular moment that caused a huge laugh: Ella and Arieda are leaving a building and travel down a "medieval escalator" (a wooden set of moving stairs, with a giant wheel turned by servants). From "Medieval Teen" magazine and trips to "Ye Olde Shopping Mall, to an elf who wants to be a lawyer and giants who love to sing, from the "VI Seasons" hotel and "Frell Community College," this energetic and colorful film will leave you laughing, and feeling light and free."
My favorite movie of 2004 so far
John Wiley | not so far away | 04/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is seriously, a great movie. From the very beginning we are sucked into this world of magic and fantasy and we stay there until the end when the narrator tells us we have to go back to the real world. We join Ella on a magical journey to find her godmother to remove a spell that was cast on her as a baby. As she travels across the country she meets elves, ogres, giants, and the handsome prince (in leather pants). Hathaway makes Ella real and gives her emotion, crucial to make this more than just a fairy tale. She makes Ella someone we can all relate to by giving her depth. Her best acting comes when the Evil Uncle discovers her curse and when she has to stab Char (in the leather pants). It was beautifully shot. Of course this movie is more humor than seriousness. And the humor is excellent. For most of the movie the entire theater was laughing at the jokes, which is a good thing for a comedy. Of course I can't end a review for this movie without mentioning the singing. Hathaway sings a song at the giant wedding, she is excellent. When I first found out Anne was going to sing in this movie I was nervous for her. But she does an excellent job. As does everyone else (including Char in the leather pants) when the whole cast sings at the end. Go, go see this movie. And Anne Hathaway. And the prince. In leather pants."
Enchanting performance by Anne!
Manaz | 08/07/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"In spite of the harsh criticism received for this movie for it's contradiction with the book I personally think it was a neat production judging in terms of cinematic creation. I never heard it being referred to as an adaptation, so why worry about if it ain't broke?
The most eye catching thing right throughout the movie was obviously Anne. Her acting has astonishingly improved since Princess Diaries, Nicholas Nickleby and the rest. Also you get to hear her amazing voice where she performance a beautiful solo and dancing of course ;).. talking about dancing, in the finale just try focusing on Jimi Mistry. you won't stop laughing!
I never pictured Hugh Dancy as prince charming, but you really get a laugh here. The entire film has a very fine blend of colors, you would notice it's very easy to watch and the picture quality is looks great. Even though not in depth, you will be taken into the worlds of both Giants and Elves, a pretty good contrast, and as always the good and the bad.
I do understand that many youngsters would be disappointed to see something quite different from the book, and even though the constantly obedient concept doesn't quite work for elders, credit should be given to a well directed fairy tale. It's a movie after all and it should be watched just like you would watch something new. If you do, it'll definitely put you in the good mood."
Nice. Very Nice.
John Wiley | 04/14/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Yes, I saw the movie last night. True; I do admit that it is not the same as the book, and perhaps if you are an "Ella Enchanted" purist - I respect your views and all - you might not like the movie very much.I've also read the book, and it follows - for the most part - the same storyline. So, even though I "knew" what was going to happen, I was still bitting my nails with the suspense of it all. Which was a good thing. It holds the same spirit of "Ella Enchanted," which is sort of "anti-Grimm's Brothers" and allowing the story's leading lady to be strong, couragous, and, occasionally, rebellious.The leading lady - Anne Hathaway - was cute and did her role very well, and they had a pretty good leading man with Hugh Dancy. The giants and elves where sort of hard to believe, but Ella's singing and dancing was great. The evil King Edward was a great villain, and this ellaborated on the part of the book that author mentioned: what if Ella married the prince with her curse and some one made her kill him, or something like that? So, Edward tells Ella when the prince proposes to her, that she stab him with a daggar.The attack on pop culture and, specifically, male teen idols, was a very nice contemporary twist. The girls in the story were crazy for Prince Char, which parallels how some girls are crazy over, Justin Timberlake, Ashton Kutcher, etc. for example.On the whole, it was a very enjoyable, feel-good movie. Insprational, as well, that young women shouldn't sit and wait for the "Prince to some day come," but to step out in the world [action packed] on the way - and be their own hero. Three cheers for the echanting Ella!"
Lost the Charm
S. Gregory | CA | 07/10/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Ella Enchanted is by far one of my favorite books of all time. In fact, I read my original copy so much, I had to purchase a new one after I started losing the cover, copyright page, first chapter ... The story is truly heartwarming and genuine.
However, if it is your intention to enjoy this tale, please read the book. Because this movie, despite the fact that all the characters have the same name, is so completely different from the book that it's a disgrace. The movie is dolled up and modernized until it's unrecognizable from the simple story of a girl finding herself into a hiphop mistake that flounders in a world that Gail Carson Levine did NOT write.
The lead character, by far the most important, a young woman who is supposed to have backbone and strength of heart, is very poorly played by Anne (sorry if it's actually 'Ann') Hathaway whose self-consciousness is so evident on screen it's uncomfortable to the viewer. Her talent only spreads so far in a story that means so much. As she struggles to portray one of the most beloved females of modern literature among young girls today she fails miserably (though the horrible reconstruction of the story itself has something to do with that as it attempts to incorporate political intrigue in the lighthearted tale.)
The one redeeming quality of the movie is the tongue-in-cheek attitude some of the actors exhibited. (Ms. Hathaway was not one.) Hugh Dancy was fairly good (and quite good-looking--in fact I liked his performance, but being as I'm a young teenage girl and in love with fairytales, I'm biased) and seemed to play his role of prince less seriously and more as a joke, which was perhaps the initial intention of the film. Yet it is Ms. Hathaway with her uncomfortable presence and awkward acting that pulls the movie down.
Its other small problems, including a very pleasant view of huge, naked ogre rears, might have been overlooked, but in the end the movie Ella Enchanted is nothing but a sad memory of the book loved by so many.
If you must watch it, please try to think of it as another story entirely."