five reasons ‘The Princess Diaries’ is my go-to feel-good film

Yesterday was a hard day for me.  Without going into all the details, it involved some tears, a headache, and a day spent sitting around the house.  I watched ‘The Princess Diaries’ for about the tenth time amid all the depressingness and, as always, it cheered me up.  So I decided to write a blog post to figure out why. (You’d be surprised how many of these ‘five reasons’ posts I begin to write without actually knowing the reasons.)

The story is a timeless classic.

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Classic Cinderella, that is.  Social outcast transforms into a graceful princess.  Of course, the road that parallels the transformation is full of goofs and mishaps and hilarity, but that only adds to the fun.  Because you know where the story is going to go (especially in rewatches, duh) you can sit back and soak it in.  I always think of TPD as a ‘comfort food’ kind of movie, a movie that’s like a familiar pair of slippers – and that’s mainly to do with the warmth and gentleness of the story.

Julie Andrews is magical.

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I literally shrieked (with delight! with delight!) when the Queen says, in PD2, “I’ve done a lot of flying in my day”.  Because how is that not perfect?  Anyway, getting back to the first movie…I know Julie’s Andrews’ Queen Clarisse is different from book Queen Clarisse but come on!  It’s Julie Andrews.  She can do whatever she wants with the character.  She makes every movie a million times better – including TPD.

It’s so inspirational.

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Who’d really want to see a film where Mia instantly accepts being a princess and flies straight to Genovia?  No one, that’s who.  Watching Mia become the person she’s meant to be gives us all a little boost of confidence.  There have been times in all of our lives where, like Mia, we’ve wanted to run away from our responsibilities.  I can’t get over how inspiring the last ten or fifteen minutes of TPD is.  From Mia deciding not to escape, to Joe rescuing her, to the speech, to the foot-popping kiss…ahhhhh.

Romance!  Romance everywhere!

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I’m still mad that the writers of PD2 brushed Michael off in the opening lines of the film.  He and Mia were suuuuch a great couple because, you know, he saw her when she was invisible.  They go through some ups and downs, but he still showed up at the ball for her.  LOVE IT.  Sometimes you just need a good, old-fashioned happily ever after.

(Also, Clarisse and Joe.  It’s true love.)

There’s just something about it…

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I really can’t explain the draw ‘The Princess Diaries’ has for me.  But if I’m feeling sick or down, I’ll watch it.  Every time. (Well, this or 1994’s ‘Little Women’.)  Anne Hathaway and Julie Andrews are one of Disney’s most memorable duos.  The soundtrack gives me all the happy feels. (Actually, everything about this movie does that.  But the soundtrack is very special.)  And at the end of the day…no one can make you feel inferior without your consent. -Joe (but also -Eleanor Roosevelt)

Have you ever seen ‘The Princess Diaries’?  Is it one of your favorite films?

Eva

P.S. Joe should have gotten his own paragraph.  Because he’s actually the best.

P.P.S. Lily is awful and I hate her.

P.P.P.S. I should have mentioned the humor, too, because it’s golden.

13 thoughts on “five reasons ‘The Princess Diaries’ is my go-to feel-good film

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  1. I’m sorry you had a rough day yesterday!

    I do love TPD. ❤ Both movies, though the second one edges this one out, for me. 😉 But the first one is great, too! Like you pointed out, it is cool how the movie shows Mia's struggles with self-image and accepting her heritage. And of course there's Joe, and Clarisse, and Michael, and Paolo, and Charlotte, and–wait, you don't like Lily?!?!?! Expwain, pwease?!?!

    Then, too, I think the first one feels more "real" than the second one, if that makes sense? I rewatched the second one recently, and I love it, but certain things about it definitely seem more "fakey" than this one. Especially just the setting, I think–L.A. or wherever she lives is grittier than the palace, that's for sure. 😛

    I like both Michael and Nicholas a lot . . . I hope they don't invent some sort of rivalry between them in the third one!! 😉 (Speaking of which, are you excited about the third one? :))

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    1. Thanks. 🙂 It was mostly to do with my writing and it’s been worked through…thankfully!

      I don’t like Lily because she’s loud, annoying, obnoxious, and a rather horrible friend. She tears Mia down about the hair + purse, she tells Mia she should be over her dad’s death after a couple months, and she’s obsessed about getting Mia on her show instead of actually being there for her.

      What you said about the first one being more real is something I TOTALLY get! That’s how I feel too.

      I’m really excited for the third one. I hope they bring Michael back, though I don’t want a big dramatic love triangle.

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      1. Oh, good!

        Okay, that’s fair. I feel like she does go through a little development and isn’t an awful friend, BUT you’re very right about her behavior towards Mia regarding the hair/purse and especially about her father. Every time I watch it and she says that, it’s like, ?!?!?! Um?? Two months is hardly any time at all??

        It would be cool if they brought pretty much everybody back. 😀 But yeah, I don’t want a love triangle either. And I’m pretty sure I’d rather Mia stay with Nich . . . but I could probably be persuaded. 🙂

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      2. Lily does have her good points, I guess. Like when she deflects everyone’s attention from Mia’s hair in history class. But I still don’t like her.

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  2. We didn’t go to movie theatres until I was an adult except for like maybe 5 times, and these movies were 2 of those. My grandmother took me and my sister for both. I was bittterly disappointed that Michael was written out (I think it’s because the actor wanted to focus on being a musician instead) and then fell head over heels for Chris Pine. But in my more sane adulthood and looking at the movies rather than fangirling, I definitely prefer the first romance; he liked her before she was cool (like in the books), which if that isn’t real romance, I don’t know what is.

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  3. It IS a great film, as well as such a solid nostalgic classic… I also absolutely agree with and love all your comments concerning Joe, Clarisse, & Mia. However, if I were to choose my go-to comfort film out of this or Royal Engagement, I personally go with the sequel every day of the week and twice on Sundays 😉

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    1. For a while I really preferred Royal Engagement, but I prefer the first one now. Still, if I see one I generally have to watch the other.

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