Alan Menken, Stephen Schwartz, Disenchanted Cast – Disenchanted (Original Soundtrack)

Walt Disney Records

Release Date: November 18th 2022

Reviewed by: Joshua Andre

Alan Menken, Stephen Schwartz, Disenchanted Cast– Disenchanted (Original Soundtrack) (Amazon mp3/iTunes)

Distributed By: Disney +

Release Date: November 18th 2022

Reviewed by Joshua Andre

Disenchanted– Starring Amy Adams, Patrick Dempsey, Idina Menzel, James Marsden, Maya Rudolph, Jayma Mays, Yvette Nicole Brown, Gabriella Baldacchino); Directed by Adam Shankman

Track Listing [plus artists]:

  1. Andalasia [Griffin Newman]
  2. Even More Enchanted [Amy Adams]
  3. The Magic Of Analasia [James Marsden, Idina Menzel]
  4. Fairytale Life (The Wish) [Amy Adams]
  5. Fairytale Life (After The Spell) [Amy Adams, Gabriella Baldacchino, Patrick Dempsey]
  6. Perfect [Gabriella Baldacchino, Ann Harada, James Monroe Iglehart & Michael McCorry Rose]
  7. Badder [Amy Adams & Maya Rudolph]
  8. Love Power [Idina Menzel]
  9. Love Power (Reprise) [Amy Adams]
  10. Even More Enchanted (Finale) [Amy Adams]
  11. Disenchanted Score Suite [Alan Menken]
  12. Hard Times For Heroes (Demo) [Patrick Dempsey, Ann Harada, James Monroe Iglehart & Michael McCorry Rose]
  13. Something Different This Year (Demo) [Gabriella Baldacchino & Kolton Stewart]
  14. Love Power (End Credits Version) [Idina Menzel]

In 2007, a film released that surprised us all. It redefined what it means to be a live action Disney film and launched the film career of one Amy Adams. Yes, my friends- Enchanted released in 2007, and now that Amy is a star in her own right, she and everyone else are back for Disenchanted, a direct-to-streaming film which released in November last year, along with the stirring, moving and inspiring companion soundtrack album. I for one was incredibly excited to see the film last year- particularly when the 2007 film has so much replay value. To say I had high hopes for the sequel would be an understatement.

Sadly though, this review of sorts will be short. Simply because the film was utterly disappointing. You see, I had nothing to compare Enchanted to in 2007- the bar was set low. Hence why I was surprised in a good way back then and why I continue to be in awe and wonder of a film ahead of its time. But with such lofty expectation of Disenchanted; the acting, writing, storyline, and general cohesiveness of the release left me wanting… more? Something else? Whatever it was, there wasn’t any pizzaz nor special thing in the second film, that made the first film what it was. As an actor though, Amy was as wonderful, skilful, and creative as ever, and she does try her hardest. Patrick Dempsey didn’t have much to do but did well with what was given to him. Yet James Marsden and Idina Menzel reduced to side characters in favour of the bland characterisation of villains that Maya Rudolph, Jayma Mays, and Yvette Nicole Brown were trying and failing to play? Such a travesty! Newcomer Gabriella Baldacchino excels as teenage Morgan (but I wonder why Rachel Covey wasn’t asked to reprise her role!); yet when you add all of these elements and these individual performances which are sometimes good and sometimes not, you don’t necessarily get a movie that is cohesive, and that’s certainly the case here.

I’d imagine if you search online, you’d find plenty of reviews for Disenchanted. Some positive and some negative. Hence, my review is indeed surplus and probably needn’t have been written. Yet I felt compelled to write my thoughts, as Enchanted was a special movie for me and my family back in the day. I probably won’t revisit Disenchanted any time soon (because the film is incredibly disjointed, losing its magic spark!), and as for the album, it’s solid without being spectacular (there’s no songs present here like “Ever Ever After”, “True Love’s Kiss”, “Happy Working Song”, and “That’s How You Know”). “Love Power” by Idina Menzel is the album’s crowning achievement, and even that is not that memorable.

As actors, Amy Adams, James Marsden, Idina Menzel and Patrick Dempsey are solid in their craft. They’re respected in the industry, but as a whole on this film, they didn’t click. The villains weren’t believable, and the plot was too basic. Maybe I’m viewing the film from an adult lens rather than a teenager lens, and maybe if I saw Enchanted for the first time now, I’d have different thoughts about it. Regardless, this movie could’ve been so much more, but wasn’t and so I’m sad to say that this release isn’t my favourite. If it resonates with you, that’s fine. But if not, remember that you’re not alone, because the film did receive mixed reviews. If you want to watch an original Disney live action film though, then I’d say stick with the original Enchanted movie, or even watch Descendants. If Disenchanted impresses you though… then more power to you!

Amy Adams: For me, it was interesting ’cause we were looking at where Giselle would be now. When we leave her in the last movie, there’s been an evolution from the beginning of the movie of Enchanted to who Giselle is at the end of the movie. So sort of taking that evolution of who she might be but also making sure we keep her grounded in sort of the truth of her feelings, but without losing that joy and that naiveté and innocence and purity that makes Giselle so special. That’s sort of where my launching place was, taking everything that I loved about Giselle in the first movie and then just getting this opportunity to spin it throughout this one.

It was really just such a pleasure, getting the returning cast together. It was so fun to get to see everybody just step back into it, and that we were lucky enough to have everybody come join us. And I can’t thank them enough, and I’m very appreciative.

Idina Menzel: Mine is a pretty drastic change. I go from this, you know, cynical New York chick, and then I jump down a portal or a manhole and then I come out. It was so much fun for me. And the challenge [was] just kinda figuring out the balance. Adam and I would talk, I’d say, ‘How much of my New York accent do I still have coming from Andalasia, and how much is this idyllic? How much has this idyllic, romantic, beautiful perfect place rubbed off on me?’ Putting on the corset and all that was an easy journey for me.

Patrick Dempsey: Robert at the very beginning is very much the same, although he’s kinda trying to balance between his new baby and his other child, and the conflict between the stepmother. Then getting [to be] larger than life was completely freeing and really fun. So for me, it was a fantastic ride.

I know. It was a joy [singing]. That whole process of going through, finding your voice, working with the coach, learning the lyrics and the dance was an extraordinary experience and something I’d never done before. It’s an extraordinary feeling you get when you sing. The vibration, it’s something very intoxicating about it. So it’s nice to get a taste of that. It was nice to be in the fairy tale world for a while.

3 songs to listen to: Even More Enchanted, The Magic Of Analasia, Love Power

Score (album): 3.5/5

RIYL: Disney albums, Classical music, Hilary Duff, Selena Gomez, Jonas Brothers, One Direction, Lindsay Lohan

Rating (movie): 2/5

RIYL: Enchanted, Finding Nemo, Monsters Inc, Small Soldiers, Operation Dumbo Drop, The Santa Clause, Flubber, Mrs Doubtfire, Space Jam

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