Ben, son of Belle and the once selfish Beast, is poised to become next on the throne, however he is not ready and allows the villain kids from the Isle of the Lost to attend Auradon Prep. ...
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When the pressure to be royally perfect becomes too much for Mal, she flees Auradon and returns to her rotten roots on the Isle of the Lost, but her former archenemy Uma, daughter of Ursula, has seized power.
Follows Liv, a popular television star whose show has just finished its run, and Maddie, an outstanding student and school basketball star whose popularity is on the rise, until Liv makes a return to their high school.
Tenzing Norgay Trainor
Ben, son of Belle and the once selfish Beast, is poised to become next on the throne, however he is not ready and allows the villain kids from the Isle of the Lost to attend Auradon Prep. From there, things go way down hill.
This film is one of those rare exceptions I make because of one thing it was actually good. To me it was one of those rare examples of a Disney TV movies and TV movies in general actually being good when actual thought and effort is applied.
I really like the concept, in a way it's kinda like with the Marvel graphic comic series "Runaways" only instead of the children of comic book villains and supervillians, here it's kids of fairy tale villains.
The production value is on par, for a limited budget they did well. Really like the look of both the enchanted land where the good Fairy Tale characters live. I like how despite magic the land also has technology that exists, and one other unique aspect I like is their version of "Lacrose" which is also a slight combo of the game Assault from the TV show "American Gladiators" as the centerline there are tennis balls being shot at the players.
And of course the island which is literally a prison island like in the movie "Escape from New York" as we see it's a bit of a slum and run down from the fact magic doesn't work within the boundary line and the fact most who occupy it aren't good company.
Though for me the song and dance numbers are the weak point of the film. The songs, their fun and good but just aren't really that memorable, to me anyway. Personally I would of been fine even if this film had no songs at all and I think that was at first the original intention. But this is just a minor quib and there really aren't that many song and dance numbers which is a relief.
But of course were here for the Descendant characters, the ensemble that play there were actually pretty solid, each of them had fun in their roles. All of the characters were unique in persona's and had specialties. In a way the film is also almost a heist film since their objective is to steal the Blue Fairy's wand which is the maguffin of the film. I really liked how it had that suspense where you felt these characters could go either way as each of them are going though the motions of adjusting to a life they never had.
My favorite character is of course Mal played by Dove Cameron whom was surprisingly good because she had more range to work with. I like the costume and look to her, where it's sort of a mix of both rebel and goth. I really like how she has a leadership quality to her, rebellious, mischievous, even has a sort of dry sarcasm and charisma.
Each of the Decendants really by their nature aren't bad or not as bad as they think, their heads are just in the wrong place no thanks to the bad lessons their parents taught them. You actually do feel and kinda care about them, one moment I found sad was when their asked if their parents ever made them cookies it really told you a lot showing how little love each of these kids got, and that the villains despite being good villains their lousy parents, the Decendants to them are nothing but tools, means to their ends, which really sucks that isn't right.
There are even little moments I liked where we see that some of the Decendants of the good fairy tale characters really aren't so good. From Audrey (Aurara's Decendent) whom is self absorbed and Chad (Cinderella's Descendant) is dishonest, a hypocrite, and kinda a brown noser. Those details I felt show just because kids were born from the right side of the tracks doesn't always mean their turn out good.
And of course we see each of the Decendants start to actually make or even have something in their lives, from Mal opening up and having feelings for Ben (Bele and the Beast's descendant), Carlos getting over his misplaced fear of dogs, and others which shows they really can have the good life and all the more makes you hope their make the right choice.
The film has a good message which is to simply be your own person, don't let labels, class, or even background define you. Only you have the power to decide who and what you want to be.
Overall it's a solid film, it's not exactly a fantasy classic in my book anyway but it's still fun to watch, if your a fan of the Disney fantasy films or just the fantasy genre, like the Descendants themselves it's worth giving a chance.
Rating: 3 stars
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