Updated: Dec 13, 2020
Godmothered, the Disney+ live-action movie focuses on the role of the fairy godmother, has the foundations of movie magic working in its favor. The first would be timing: just in time for the holiday season, the film is directed by Sharon Maguire (best known for Bridget Jones’s Diary).
Godmothered focuses on a young and unskilled fairy godmother who ventures out on her own to prove her worth by tracking down a girl whose request for help was denied. This film is pleasant enough, a fun and nostalgic Christmas-themed family comedy with ambitions to be this generation's Enchanted, the 2007 musical rom-com starring Amy Adams as a cartoon Disney princess who gets stuck in New York City after a witch transforms her into a flesh-and-blood humanoid. Godmothered has a few slow parts but a meaningful message.
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While Enchanted focused on bringing fairy-tale magic to everyday life, Godmothered finds its originality in doing the opposite: by the end, it’s about how fairy tales could learn a thing or two from real life. Remembering what brings happiness in the day-to-day is more important than fixating on a nebulous happily ever after. The delivery isn’t that smooth; the conflict of fairy godmothers going out of style takes a backseat for most of the movie before getting revved up at the end for an 11th-hour showdown.
The film, however, leaps with Jillian Bell’s (the young fairy godmother) weird line delivery. Encountering Siri for the first time, she cowers, whispering, "Who said that? Is there a genie in there? (Don't answer that.)" Every time her character bursts into song, Bell ends up croaking out foul, off-key melodies unbefitting the typical Disney heroine, which might not ultimately matter much. Kids are likely to enjoy this movie either way, as it retains enough of the Disney formula: a happy ending, the triumph of love, endearing-enough CGI wildlife, a climactic and heroic musical number.
For the most part, Godmothered is a mixed-bag of clever comedy and silly kid-movie clichés, but the writers craft an ending that is so emotionally and intellectually satisfying that it is easy to forgive the film’s less magical attributes. Give the film a watch and let us know what you think!.
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