Menu

The Princess – There Is Nothing Aristocratic About This Princess

MOVIE REVIEW – In Disney Plus’ fantasy action film, the lead princess doesn’t look like Zelda, but more like a Terminator Link as she mows her way through the entire film.

 

“The Princess” opens with a jumble of familiar fairy tales. The title character, the princess (Joey King, “The Kissing Bell”), lies unconscious in a fancy dress, her wavy curls strewn across the pillow. Flowers surround her bed. But, unlike Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, she wakes up on her own and beats the hell out of two brutal guards. While this overture promises some kind of meaningful subversion, this film only asks one brave question, “What if a princess could kick your ass?”.

The shrug-worthy answer – “Then she’d probably kick some ass, I suppose” – makes up the bulk of this perfunctory, plotless film.

The sparse narrative from first-time screenwriters Ben Lustig and Jake Thornton goes like this: the princess wakes up in a tower. The princess is kidnapped by the evil nobleman Julius (Dominic Cooper, doing his best Karl Urban impersonation). The princess must slaughter a host of villains to avoid marriage to the abominable Julius and save her family.

Joey King does indeed take down a lot of villains, and in the mix of CGI and confusing choreography there are some impressive stunt performances. But there’s basically nothing to see here – unless, of course, you find it in any way novel that an aristocratic Amazon is the protagonist of an action movie. Even in that case, I suggest you watch the eighties film Red Sonja instead.

 

 

There are plenty of female fighter movies here, it was unnecessary to make another

 

Because for those who don’t live in a cave in 1980, female warriors are nothing new. Just in the last year there has been “The Black Widow”, “Raya and the Last Dragon”, the remake of “Justice League” and “Army of the Dead”. The idea that this is in any way a meaningful representation of women is laughable. Yes, women can be sporty and still be women. The fact that Hollywood often feels the need to prove this by casting female warriors with frizzy hair, make-up and dowdy clothes is more insulting than progressive.

However, ‘The Princess’ does not just present a female warrior as the protagonist. The fact that she can fight, and is a girl at that, more or less provides the backbone of the plot. The princess grew up in secret, learning to fight from her father’s advisor Linh (Veronica Ngo, “The Old Guard”), and hopes to prove herself a worthy warrior one day. Julius’ invasion gives him that chance. We learn absolutely nothing else about him. The character doesn’t even have a name. The credits just say “The Princess”. Pass.

 

 

Incredibly boring

 

This main character is so nothing it hurts. Despite how professional he is as a fighter, things seem to happen to him endlessly. And he does his best to match them with his usual action hero quips. During a series of endless skirmishes as the princess makes her way down the tower, Julius’s unquenchable minions say sexist things and the princess stops to retaliate with a witty retort before killing them. Then it happens again and again. It’s like watching an hour and a half of someone playing a mediocre video game.

The film almost revels in the misery of its protagonist, perhaps best illustrated by her masochistic costume. This film is hell-bent on keeping its action heroine in a skirt. She begins the film in a cumbersome wedding dress, and instead of simply changing into a pair of trousers (which she has the opportunity to do on several occasions), she is left to tear and endlessly alter this hideous garment. “The Princess” would play much better as a satire about a young woman caught in an endless cycle of victimhood than Natasha Kermani’s horror gem “Lucky”.

 

 

Butcher Princess

 

Unfortunately for the princess, or the viewers, there is not much relief as the princess demonstrates her fighting skills to no end. And since the film begins in the middle of Julius’ coup, we are left to piece together the backstory from flashbacks and outspoken dialogue. “The Princess” somehow manages to be both understated and offensively obvious. We learn practically nothing about Linh, for example, but the platitudes he says to the princess could have been written by an artificial intelligence that has been digesting action movie scripts for the past decade. It constantly reminds the princess that her real power comes not from her fists, but from her heart.

In addition, The Princess doesn’t look good enough, and the camerawork is too lame to be at least funny and entertainingly bad. The castle in which the film is set is a CGI behemoth, resulting in a number of ugly shots. Every frame is awash in muddy brown. Director Le-Van Kiet has trouble keeping up with each fight, resulting in several moments where you don’t see them. It’s certainly not uncommon for a feature-length production to include CGI or whiplash-like fight scenes, but plenty of films have made the most of them. “Stardust”, Matthew Vaughn’s 2007 fantasy action film, handled both cleverly.

 

 

Copy paste

 

It’s hard to imagine a darker depiction of modern gender politics, where women’s access to power often seems more important than their access to basic human rights. The heroic efforts of the princess do have an impact on the kingdom after all, but only because she possessed the brute strength to murder countless one-dimensional men. She represents nothing new or progressive; she is as much a figment of men’s imagination as all the other female action heroes before her.

-BadSector-

MOVIE REVIEW - In Disney Plus' fantasy action film, the lead princess doesn't look like Zelda, but more like a Terminator Link as she mows her way through the entire film.   "The Princess" opens with a jumble of familiar fairy tales. The title character, the princess (Joey King, "The Kissing Bell"), lies unconscious in a fancy dress, her wavy curls strewn across the pillow. Flowers surround her bed. But, unlike Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, she wakes up on her own and beats the hell out of two brutal guards. While this overture promises some kind of meaningful…
It's hard to imagine a darker depiction of modern gender politics, where women's access to power often seems more important than their access to basic human rights. The heroic efforts of the princess do have an impact on the kingdom after all, but only because she possessed the brute strength to murder countless one-dimensional men. She represents nothing new or progressive; she is as much a figment of men's imagination as all the other female action heroes before her.

The Princess

Direction - 1.2
Actors - 1.5
Story - 1.2
Visuels/Action - 1.9
Ambience - 1.6

1.5

ATROCIOUS

It's hard to imagine a darker depiction of modern gender politics, where women's access to power often seems more important than their access to basic human rights. The heroic efforts of the princess do have an impact on the kingdom after all, but only because she possessed the brute strength to murder countless one-dimensional men. She represents nothing new or progressive; she is as much a figment of men's imagination as all the other female action heroes before her.

User Rating: Be the first one !

Spread the love

No comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

theGeek TV