There’s no business like… Show Tunes Review Week business
The 2007 film Enchanted has a delightful premise: Disney meets the real world. It opens with an animated fairy tale sequence reminiscent of vintage Disney animation, charming and colorful and just as socially regressive as Cinderella and Snow White. But after a scheme by an evil witch, Princess Giselle is pushed into a well. She emerges as… live action Amy Adams in New York City. Cue a fish-out-of-water comedy as a Disney princess tries to navigate the messy metropolis.
What makes the movie really work is not so much the script (good enough, minus a disappointing CGI-action-driven climax), but the chemistry and energy of the cast. I truly believe Adams should have been considered for an Oscar for her portrayal of a wide-eyed, flesh-and-bones Disney princess. James Marsden inspires dozens of laughs as the misguided Prince Charming-type. Even stone-faced Patrick Dempsey wrings some charm as a straight-man foil.
The music of the film also works amazingly well. One of the recurring gags is that Giselle spontaneously breaks into song like a Disney princess would, despite being in the middle of a busy city. “That’s How You Know” is the highlight, a true show-stopper.
Yet the moment I remember most fondly is the sweeping romance of “So Close,” when (spoilers) Dempsey’s Robert and Giselle finally realize they love each other. It’s a lovely payoff to 90 minutes of great cast electricity, set to a gorgeous, sweeping tune. Piano, strings, emotional vocals… my heart is putty.