If you're a ten-year-old girl, this sequel to Disney's 2001 hit will completely transfix you. How could it not? Bubbly Mia (Anne Hathaway), the American teenager who in the first film learned she was actually European royalty, finishes college and--whoosh!--heads off to Genovia, where he's given a closet full of fabulous clothes and jewelry in preparation to rule the kingdom under the tutelage of grandmother Julie Andrews. Throw in a horse and a volatile but innocent romantic attraction to the dreamy young stud (Chris Pine) who's also vying for the throne, and you have the kind of stuff that prepubescent girls rhapsodize about at slumber parties. Oh--and there's a slumber party here, too, featuring a bevy of cute, international young princesses mattress-surfing down a giant slide. Resistance is futile. For the rest of us, though, director Garry Marshall has managed to make his Laverne & Shirley days seem positively Shakespearean in comparison. The movie is precious, padded (two hours!), and pandering twaddle; Andrews, in her role as Queen Mother, is even shoehorned into a faux-hip-hop duet with Disney Channel favorite Raven (one of many, many grueling moments intended to sell the soundtrack). Then the film takes a maddening left turn three-quarters of the way into the plot and decides that, despite all the preceding consumption and connubial fantasies to the contrary, it's really about feminine emancipation. But don't worry--what causes you to smack your forehead in frustration will go right over the heads of its hypnotized target market. --Steve Wiecking
If you hurt my girl, you will answer directly to me. And whatever crimes I commit against you, remember, I have diplomatic immunity in forty-six countries, including Puerto Rico.
Sir, you will find that the word "fear" is not in my vocabulary.
Perhaps, but it's in your eyes.
Welcome. A few moments ago, I realized the only reason I was getting married was because of a law, and that didn't seem like a good enough reason. So, I won't be getting married today. My grandmother has ruled without a man at her side for quite some time, and... I think she rocks at it. So, as the granddaughter of Queen Clarisse and King Rupert, I ask the members of parliament to think about your daughters, your nieces, and sisters, and granddaughters, and ask yourselves: would you force them to do what you're trying to make me do? I believe I will be a great queen. I understand Genovia to be a land that combines the beauty of the past with al the best hope of the future. I feel in my heart and soul that I can rule Genovia. I... I love Genovia. Do you think that I would be up here in a wedding dress if I didn't? I stand here ready to take my place as your queen. Without a husband.
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