Movie Review: The Princess Diaries (2001)

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Plot: Mia Thermopolis has just found out that she is the heir apparent to the throne of Genovia. With her friends Lilly and Michael Moscovitz in tow, she tries to navigate through the rest of her 16th year. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0247638/

Rating: 7/10

Watching The Princess Diaries fourteen years after it first came out brings back so many nostalgic memories. Can there be anything better to see than Anne Hathaway before she was annoying AF? Then there is the subtle reminder that Julie Andrews will always be the Queen of the Universe and is unparalleled in beauty and class. We have some Mandy Moore before she went AWOL, perfect as the nightmare of any teenage girl’s dreams – the perfect, preppy and quite nasty Lana Thomas. We have Josh Bryan – the boy, who looking back, no one can quite understand why everyone thought he was hot back in the day (Hormones are shady business).We have Heather Matarazzo as Lilly Moscovitz, who is the best chosen cast member in this movie. I enjoyed Robert Schwartzman as Michael Moscovitz, although I wouldn’t have chosen him to play Michael on my own accord.

Then there is the whole storyline. It is quite preposterous, but who doesn’t want to learn that they are the Princess and Heiress to a small and beautiful country, and that your grandmamma is Julie Andrews?! I mean, come on. Mia Thermopolis is the spirit animal of every teenage girl – shy, gawky and sure you are somehow a freakish creation that will never find a man. Mia’s transformation is lovely to see but the whole eventual point of the story remains clear – if you don’t believe in yourself, there is no amount of power in the world that can really change your destiny.

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As for the changes from the book to movie (you can read my review of the first Princess Diaries book here), I think that some were well done and others didn’t make sense to even change. Mia’s hair is brown in here, and I think that suits her character better. Queen Clarisse is much nicer, which works better yet again. Then there are small things like Mia’s mom not dating her Algebra teacher but her history one, which seems stupid because one of Mia’s funniest problems in the book is her adversity to math. Her father is also dead, not the faintly pompous but alive version we meet in the books. The first three books are also squeezed into one movie – something that works okay as the books are thin and quick reads.

I really enjoyed the movie – I can see that it is not the best movie made or anything, but there is so much fun and heart and teenage silliness in here that it is easy to ignore anything not so stellar about this. And who ever said that there is anything wrong with Popcorn Entertainment?

Book Review: Princess Diaries – Princess in the Spotlight (Meg Cabot)

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Rating: 7.5/10

I am having such fun with these books. Granted, they aren’t by any stretch of the imagination the best written literature of the last century nor the most solid of stories plot wise, but they are such fun teenage books and I can’t help but loving them. The second book, Princess in the Spotlight, keeps following Mia Renaldo with her quest to find her feet as a young princess in America and the demands of being friends with Lilly Moscovitz and the huge crush she has on Lilly’s brother, senior and general hottie Michael Moscovitz.

Life isn’t exactly easier than before, but there are more perks – her algebra marks seem to improve slightly, Michael does things that convince Mia that he is in to her, and above all, someone keeps sending her anonymous love notes (could it be Michael?)

Well, things aren’t always perfect for Mia and she still has to deal with the ever invasive press, her best friend being just a bit too commanding and her scheming grandmother, Dowager princess Clarisse Renaldo.

It’s fun, the plot developments very obvious and nothing overly dramatic. I love Mia’s take on things – she is such a hyper involved teenage girl (we’ve all been there!) Her insecurities and worries are so legitimate to her age and is a sweet reminder of how insecure all girls were at that age. Her huge crush on Michael Moscovitz is the best entertainment ever, and the emotional growth she undergoes through the course of the books are really entertaining.

Really recommended to anyone in the mood for a laugh, although it might not be to the enjoyment of everyone though (as usual).

Book Review: The Princess Diaries (Meg Cabot)

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PlotMia Thermopolis is pretty sure there’s nothing worse than being a five-foor-nine, flat-chested freshman, who also happens to be flunking Algebra.

Is she ever in for a surprise.

First Mom announces that she’s dating Mia’s Algebra teacher. Then Dad has to go and reveal that he is the crown prince of Genovia. And guess who still doesn’t have a date for the Cultural Diversity Dance?

Rating: 7.5/10

Let me just say: I absolutely love the film adaption of this book. It is so much fun and Anne Hathaway is much more likeable in here than she ever was in anything else. I’ve never read the book before, so I thought it would be really nice to see how it stacked up in the eternal movie vs book debate.

Well, both are really good even though they have numerous differences. Firstly, Mia’s father is alive in the book, so the reason of informing her that she is an heiress has nothing to do with his death and only with his incapability of procreating again after testicular cancer. Her grandmother is not as cool or queenly as Julie Andrews is and Mia’s hair is blonde, not brown. I can live with all these changes in the movie because it makes her story seem a little more plausible and I think the blonde hair in the book doesn’t really suit the awkward character.  But, the essence of Mia’s character is maintained excellently in the film, because she is in the book the most awkward, shy and socially disabled teenager you can ever come across. I thought the book is well written in a diary format and gives you such an entertaining view of the thoughts of a teenage girl. I really liked it and it is a quick and easy read. It is definitely not for everyone, but I had such an entertaining time with it!