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I love this Anne Hathaway. I simply love her and the chemistry she had with Dancy. This movie made me want to dream of having him as a prince.
Unique could describe the world and the plot, and I really enjoyed that the main character was a strong role model for young girls who watched it.
It is cute. It is fun. It is endearing. It is a fantastic journey and growth and good to watch for it is all about finding your own strength. Not many movies are so obvious about their meaning, but I did not mind that this one was.
Whenever it is on Television, I stop and watch.
Charming fairytale which is pretty unique in being better than the book it is based on. Also, Anne Hathaway is absolutely adorable :-)
|Anne Hathaway||Ella of Frell|
|Joanna Lumley||Dame Olga|
|Steve Coogan||Heston (voice)|
|Vivica A. Fox||Lucinda|
|Patrick Bergin||Sir Peter|
|Hugh Dancy||Prince Charmont|
In the kingdom of Frell, baby Ella (Anne Hathaway) is given the "gift of obedience" by a fairy called Lucinda (Vivica A. Fox). This turns out to be more of a curse, making Ella do anything she is told to do, no matter how terrible or physically impossible. Some years later, Ella's mother dies after instructing Ella to tell no one of the curse, not even her father. Eventually Ella's father (Patrick Bergin), in need of money, remarries a wealthy socialite. His greedy new wife, Dame Olga (Joanna Lumley), and her two spoiled daughters Hattie and Olive (Jennifer Higham) treat Ella poorly. They eventually realize Ella's obedience to commands, and begin making her life miserable.Ella stumbles upon Prince Charmont (Hugh Dancy), the handsome heir to the throne, as he's being pursued by his "fan club" of young women. He finds her lack of deference to him refreshing and after their encounter, sends an invitation to the Coronation Ball to her home, where it is intercepted by her stepmother and stepsisters. Hattie and Olive, who are part of Prince Charmont's fan club, are overcome with jealousy. Along with their mother, they force Ella to insult and cut ties with her best friend Areida (Parminder Nagra). Ella cannot bear to live under the obedience spell and Hattie's jealousy a moment longer, so she resolves to find Lucinda, the only one who can remove the spell. Mandy (Minnie Driver), the household fairy and the only other person who knows of the curse, tries to help by lending Ella a magical book that can show people in their current surroundings. The book holds Mandy's boyfriend Benny (Jimi Mistry), who she had accidentally transformed in an errant spell. During her journey, Ella encounters an elf named Slannen (Aidan McArdle), who wants to be a lawyer instead of an entertainer as the kingdom's laws now require. Slannen joins Ella on her quest, but they are captured by a group of ogres, who prepare to cook and eat them. They are rescued by Prince Charmont. He then accompanies her to a wedding in the land of giants, where Ella hopes to find Lucinda. Throughout the journey, Ella opens Charmont's eyes to the cruelty of his uncle's new laws oppressing elves and giants. Ella is forced to perform the rendition of Queen's Somebody to love, sung by Freddie Mercury. Char suggests that Ella should come with him to his palace to visit the Hall of Records and track down Lucinda faster.At the palace, Charmont's uncle, Sir Edgar (Cary Elwes), has Ella's "gift" called to his attention by his talking snake, Heston (voiced by Steve Coogan), who has been spying on the prince. When Edgar offers Hattie Char's hand in marriage, Ella's stepsisters explain that she does everything she is told. Edgar knows that Prince Charmont intends to propose marriage to Ella, and he orders her to stab him to death and not to tell anyone of the plan. Sir Edgar also reveals that he murdered Prince Charmont's father. To prevent the murder of Char, Ella asks Slannen to tie her to a tree outside the city and to find the giants so they can help. Ella writes Char a letter telling him that she is leaving permanently and that she cannot tell him why, which breaks his heart. Lucinda then appears before Ella at the tree, who asks her to undo the "gift" of obedience. Offended by the request, Lucinda refuses, saying that if Ella no longer wants the spell, she must remove it herself. She unties Ella from the tree and gives her a fancy dress and tells her to attend the ball. When Ella gets to the ball, Charmont almost immediately takes her to the Hall of Mirrors and asks her to marry him. Ella is about to stab him with the dagger Edgar provided, when she realizes how to free herself from the curse: looking into a mirror, she orders herself to no longer be obedient. Charmont sees the dagger drop from her hand and realizes she tried to kill him. Edgar is watching the entire scene behind a two-way mirror, and before Ella can explain, Edgar orders the guards to lock her up and have her executed in a few days.Meanwhile, Slannen gets the giants, and the ogres come to sneak into the castle to rescue Ella and find out that Sir Edgar is poisoning the crown that Char will receive during the ceremony. Just before Charmont puts it on, Ella and her allies interrupt. Edgar and Heston call for the knights and Red Guards, and a battle ensues. Ella explains everything to Charmont while fighting alongside him. When Sir Edgar's forces lose the battle, Heston tries to bite Char, but is stopped by Ella. Caught trying to kill the prince, Edgar admits to killing the King to the assembled crowd. Then, carried away by his own rhetoric, he puts the crown dramatically on his own head, and promptly collapses from the poison, although he survives.Char and Ella kiss; her stepsisters arrive and order her to stop kissing, and she is delighted to refuse. Ella then walks up to Hattie and takes her mother's necklace back from her (Hattie had forced Ella to give it to her near the beginning of the movie). Char once again asks Ella to marry him, and she agrees. The movie ends with their wedding and a musical number (Elton John's "Don't Go Breaking My Heart").
Theatrical : 2004-04-09 : United States of America
DVD : 2004-08-24