After seeing the movie Enchanted last night, I couldn’t help but wonder about some of the clever costumes shown in the film.
For those of you who don’t know, Enchanted is about a princess in a cartoon fantasy who gets cast into modern day New York City by her evil Mother-in-law to be to keep her from taking over the position as future queen. The queen’s not-so-evil and quite full of himself prince son dives into this parallel real world atmosphere to save her. The plot twists when Giselle, the object of the Prince’s affection, ends up falling in love with a real life New York City lawyer.
I admit, I had my reservations about this one. I’ve moved passed this form of entertainment. Well, at least I thought so. In the end the movie was very good and reminds us that we’re never too old for some classic fairytale-like imagination.
In many cases, one would fear that the transition of costume characters over to real life action would be a bit over the top. Well, it is. However, that’s just the point and reason why this movie and its costumes work so well together. It was so clever in fact, that I came home and started browsing the Internet for information about the costume work in the movie.
Most notable is the wedding dress that Giselle ends up taking with her from her fantasy world of Andalasia over to New York. In a number of instances, you find the protagonist with her elegant, pannier heavy dress getting caught in doorways, tripping over busy New York Streets, and accidentally stepping over an unsuspecting midget. It has to make me wonder if women truly feel more beautiful the larger their dresses get.
Costume director Mona May (also known for her work on Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion and Clueless) recalls the experience of trying to recreate the classic Disney Princess:
It’s one of the biggest dreams for a designer to design for a princess, but it’s also difficult because you’re dealing with iconic Disney characters who have been in the psyche of the viewing audience for so long. It’s a big responsibility to stay true to the character while trying to invent something new. (via Star Bulletin)
Ultimately, the costumes in the movie are absolutely charming. There are a few moments where Giselle helps herself to the curtains or sheets of her hosts home and makes her own dresses. And, like a bad cliche, there is the ultimate scene where she discovers shopping. In so many ways, the average person will not notice the costumes from the movie as blatantly as other aspects. That’s where the genius lies. They’re subtle enough to be highly appreciated, but not the only good thing going.