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Happily N'Ever After: An insulting and unfunny animated film.

Back in 2001, DreamWorks made a little animated movie called "Shrek". It was about an ogre who ends up rescuing a princess and falling in love with her while having plenty of jokes poking fun at fairy tales, particularly the ones made by Disney. Surprisingly, it became a huge critical and commercial hit spawning a giant franchise and also a plethora of films that took parody of fairy tales. These films had varying degrees of success, but by 2007, audiences finally started to get tired of these films as people started to dislike them over time. Even Shrek wasn't safe from this. Eventually, Hollywood realized this and finally put the genre to rest. Honestly, it was for the best because I'm pretty sure we would've gotten more films like "Happily N'Ever After". To put it lightly, this is one of the worst animated movies I have ever seen in my entire life. It's also one of the most insulting films I've ever seen as well. I don't think I've sat through an animated film this bad in a long time, but this one seriously made me angry. In the kingdom of Fairy Tale Land, a Wizard (George Carlin) controls all the fairy tales in the kingdom and makes sure all have happy endings with the help of his assistances, Mambo (Andy Dick) and Munk (Wallace Shawn). One day, the Wizard goes off on a vacation and leaves the two in charge and tells them to keep an eye on Cinderella's story making sure her ending is perfect. Things go according to plan at first as Ella (Sarah Jessica Parker) doesn't go to the ball by orders of her stepmother Frieda (Sigourney Weaver), but then gets her fairy godmother and goes to the ball and meets the Prince (Patrick Warburton). However, Frieda discovers the plot and how the Wizard controls the fairy tales and takes the wizard staff from Mambo and Munk. With her new power, she gathers all of the fairy tale villains in the land so she can make villains dreams come true. Realizing the evil brewing, Ella, Mambo, Munk, and Ella's friend Rick (Freddie Prinze Jr.) set off to try to stop Freida from her evil doing. This is a film from the infamous Vanguard Animation, the same studio that brought us "Valiant" and eventually "Space Chimps" and "Gnome Alone" and this is easily their worst film to date. While watching this movie, I felt my skin crawl. I really was insulted as an animation fan and even a fan of good fairy tale movies by this one film. It really is that bad. The story is honestly uninspired. It tries to play on the classic Cinderella story and yet makes so many bad decisions that only can frustrate the audience. It's so desperately trying to appeal to the "Shrek" crowd and yet it ends up appealing to no one. As someone that loves the classic Disney film "Cinderella", I found this film insulting with the choices it makes. It treats the characters like dust and tries to be so hip and cool that it just turned me right off. It doesn't also help that this film is painfully unfunny. Every joke fails right from the start with the narrator talking about how they couldn't name the land Canada because it was already taken. Even the Wizard goes off to play golf in Scotland and all it did was make me scratch my head and wonder if Fairy Tale Land actually exists on Earth or if it was a parallel dimension and when it takes place. It's always bad when a film leaves audiences asking the wrong questions and that's what this film did for me. As far as the animation goes, it's terrible. Everything about it felt uneven and disjointed. The environments looked bland and unappealing and reminded me of screensavers from the 90s and the character animation is even worse. All the characters in this film look like plastic and they have the most hideous designs possible. It was such an unappealing film to look at and I think it honestly might be the ugliest looking film I've ever seen. It also doesn't help that the characters in this movie are all awful. Every single one of them is unlikable from the first moment we see them. Mango and Munk are annoying comic relief that does nothing useful and just get in the way most of the time, the Prince is nothing but a stereotype and reminded me of an unfunny Kronk from "The Emperor's New Groove", Rick is an unlikeable jerk who cares more about his ego and doesn't seem to redeem himself in the end. Though easily the worst characters in this film are Ella and Frieda. Both of them flat out insulted me with how they took two great characters and made them their worst possible versions. When it comes to Ella, she is a pale version of Cinderella that perfectly can be described as a damsel in distress. Cinderella in the 1950 film gets way too much slack for just waiting for a prince even though in that film she doesn't even do that. She puts up with her family's abuse and got rewarded for her good deeds and even fought with them near the end of the film. In this film, Ella desperately wants her prince and goes throughout most of the film looking for him determined that he'll save the day. She's such a weak protagonist. Frieda isn't any better. Do you remember in "Cinderella" how evil Lady Tremaine is? Remember how she was bent by jealousy and greed and wanted the worst for Cinderella to put her awful stepdaughters forward? Well, in this film Frieda hates Ella just because and doesn't even care about her stepdaughters. She's doing all of this evil stuff because being evil is fun. She's such a terrible villain. Also, I need to talk about the soundtrack. It is awful. The score sounds like it was composed on a Yamaha keyboard and the song choices are perplexingly bad. If there's anything this film taught me, it's that the Monster Mash and Disco Inferno do not work as a mashup. Personally, I found "Happily N'Ever After" insufferable. The story is uninspired and nothing special, the animation is ugly and out of date, and the characters are insulting versions of their former selves in better films. I have no idea how anyone working on this film thought it would work because it was just so painfully bad. I really think you should stay away from this film at all costs. It really is that bad. The only thing good that I can say about it, is that I happily will never watch this film ever again.


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