Ella Enchanted

I try to be a positive person. There are, of course, things that annoy me, but I try to find the positive in all things and at least, I temper my negative feedback with positive. And if I must complain, I try to be critical and analytical as opposed to mean. “That sucks” is not a helpful remark either to the creator or the person who might want to consume whatever it is that sucks.

I really do try.

Ella Enchanted sucks. I’m talking about the movie, obviously, because the book is beautiful and perfect, as anybody who’s read it knows. Ella is strong and determined, the world-building is lovely, and it’s a story about being yourself. Even more importantly, it’s about your own part in creating your identity. Your “self” isn’t some commandment set in stone, it changes as you change and you aren’t a helpless repository for that change. You can actively create it! *

Now, I saw the movie before the book. I thought it was a cute, but ultimately unimportant**, movie. Most movie adaptations stick fairly close to books, at least in plot, so I didn’t really care to read it. And then I heard my friends talk about how awful the movie was and how utterly unlike the book it was. So I read the book. And was wowed! And shocked! HOW DID THEY MAKE SUCH A HORRIBLE ADAPTATION OF SUCH A LOVELY AND IMPORTANT*** BOOK! HOW. HOW. HOW. Not even how, but why. They took this gorgeous story about a girl fighting for herself, literally, and made it into a stupid political god I don’t even remember because I’ve blocked it out.

Worst adaptation I had ever seen. Until I watched The Little Prince.

*Plus, Ella + Char = 4eva!!!!!1!!
**That is, unimportant to my psyche. Very few movies are “important” in the larger sense, but as I am a very self-involved creature, I care more about things that are important to me.
***Again, I mean important to me.

(This post was inspired by Meagan’s non-negative post over here. I might talk about movie adaptations of books later, because I think it’s an interesting subject, but I had to complain publicly about this travesty first.)

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6 thoughts on “Ella Enchanted

  1. Yes! I agree with everything here! I hate the movie of Ella Enchanted so very much. First of all, Char saves Ella from the Ogres, instead of her saving herself because of her awesome linguistic skills. Second, they trashed the worldbuilding. Nothing was dangerous anymore! Everyone just wanted to be friends with one another! The book is such a fabulous example of really good YA for teenage girls that the movie is just one big wasted opportunity.

  2. 1) You are right about EE, the movie.
    2) You are right about EE, the book. (It’s on my list of “Books That I Will Force My Hypothetical Children To Read Because Of The Strong Female Protagonist,” along with The Lioness Quartet and The Golden Compass.)
    3) We read Le Petit Prince (in French) for AP French, and it was glorious and life-changing, and then for some awful reason, Mme. made us watch part of the movie. We, collectively, were horrified.

  3. 1) Yes, about the movie.
    2) Yes, about the book. (It’s on my list of “Books That I Will Force My Hypothetical Children To Read Because of the Strong Female Protagonist,” alongside The Golden Compass and The Lioness Quartet, although I could do without all the Jonathan nonsense in the last one.)
    3) Love youuu.

  4. Pingback: Reading Meme « Nisaba Be Praised

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