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Ella Enchanted

2004

PG CC

Anne Hathaway is Ella in the charming fairy tale adventure ELLA ENCHANTED. On the day of her birth, Ella is given the gift of obedience, which is also a curse. Under no circumstances can Ella refuse anything she is asked to do. Tired of being taken advantage of, Ella leaves home to find her Fairy Godmother and return her unwanted gift. This simple errand soon turns into an amazing journey.

Starring:
Anne Hathaway, Hugh Dancy
Runtime:
1 hour, 40 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Fantasy, Romance, Comedy, Kids & Family
Director Tommy O'Haver
Starring Anne Hathaway, Hugh Dancy
Supporting actors Cary Elwes, Aidan McArdle, Joanna Lumley, Lucy Punch, Jennifer Higham, Minnie Driver, Eric Idle, Steve Coogan, Jimi Mistry, Vivica A. Fox, Parminder Nagra, Jim Carter, Patrick Bergin, Donna Dent, Ankita Malkan, Sally-Ann Tingle, Aimee Brigg, Helen Norton
Studio Lionsgate
MPAA rating PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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).
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Format: DVD
There are two things that colored my perception of "Ella Enchanted." The first is that I just saw "A Cinderella Story" a couple of weeks ago, and since that was the worst movie made on the Cinderella theme in the history of the world anything else was going to look a lot better in comparison. But then director Tommy O'Haver has the advantage of being able to mine the gold from Gail Carson Levine's beloved children's novel, which provides enough creative sparks to make this movie something different. If you are going to tell the Cinderella story over again then you need to have a twist that justifies the effort, and "Ella Enchanted" has a couple of those.

Second, this really is a movie aimed at kids. I say this because the key twist in this story is that when Ella is born a rather second rate fairy named Lucinda (Vivica A. Fox) gives her the gift of obedience. This means that every time somebody tells Ella to do something, she has to do it. Now, for kids, younger kids, this is a truly nightmare scenario. Parents and other adults are always telling you to do something: what if they could MAKE you do whatever they wanted? Endless chores, homework, and probably music lessons would be your fate, which is essentially what happens to Ella when she grows up to be Anne Hathaway.

Hathaway is the star of this film and what promise she showed in "The Princess Dairies" is fulfilled her as she plays Ella as more of a civil rights advocate than a would be fairy princess.
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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.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The flavoring of this movie is akin to "The Princess Bride" and the "Shrek" films. It has many of the fairytale aspects you would want: a young woman who is under a spell, a prince, an evil king, and fairy tale creatures such as dwarves and fairies. Like "The Princess Bride" and the "Shrek" films, "Ella Enchanted" sort of makes fun of the concept of the fairytale. When Prince Charmont meets no-nonsense Ella and tells her, "You are the first girl I've met who hasn't swooned at the sight of me," she replies with, "Well, then maybe I've done you some good."
Everyone will love Anne Hathaway's Ella character, who is not your typical fairytale woman. She's strong, knows what she wants, and knows how to get it. You immediately want to root for her, and long for her horrible stepmother and two stepsisters to have a taste of their own medicine.
I wasn't sure if I'd like this movie or not, but I found it great fun to follow along as Ella searches for the fairy who gave her a gift that Ella desperately wants the fairy to take back.
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