All of this hulabaloo about the newest member of the royal family in Britain has got me thinking about the princess movies out there. Most of them are wretched. I can’t handle most of the original Disney movies with their simpering brain dead leads and sweet as sugar screen plays. Bletch, spare me. Still, I wasn’t, and I am not, 100% immune to the royal fan girl phenomenon so I thought I would talk about my top three favourite movies centered on crowned heads.
First and forever foremost, The Princess Bride. Oh André the Giant you left us too soon. This movie was a perfect storm of witty writing (the book is also by William Goldman and also fantastically fun), great on screen chemistry, perfect one liners and a perfect supporting cast. I don’t want to hear your quibbles about how wooden Robin Wright is or how there is just not enough Wallace Shawn’s Vizzini. It is my go to movie for all occasions. My version of chicken soup and no one will ever convince me it is not perfect.
My guilty pleasure in this category is Princess Diaries. This is where I bet I lose people but I will stand by it. Yes, it is silly and teen angsty (is angsty a word? If not it should be.) but it has a few things I think hold it up. One, it has Anne Hathaway doing her absolute best to channel Lucille Ball . Blasphemy I hear some of you purists saying! But if you ask me Anne can take a tumble and do physical comedy with the best. She is glamorous and statuesque but not afraid to take one for the team. That is why she reminds me of Lucy and what I saw in this movie. Second, this movie series has Julie Andrews as a queen. If that isn’t type casting I don’t know what is. Third, I admit I love the sound track. Yes, I know, campy campy campy, but it is toe tapping.
My last entry in this genre is Tangled. I suppose it is only fitting that an animated Disney movie made it somewhere here but you have to admit that this is a far cry from Sleeping Beauty. Here is a princess movie where, despite being a shut in…like every other classic animated princess, our protagonist is smart, resourceful and well spoken. She doesn’t giggle and she doesn’t swoon but she also doesn’t have a mile wide chip on her shoulder. She is a perfectly normal girl reacting in perfectly normal ways. Also I love the horse. How could you not love the horse? Oh, and the chameleon! I really need to go re-watch this movie…
There you are. My top three princess movies. As a caveat may I just say that my top three princesses would be a completely different list and yes, Princess Leia Organa would be front and center on that one.