Movie Review: Princess Diaries

Princess Diaries Trailer

Princess Diaries Summary

Shy high school student Mia Thermopolis resides with her single mother, Helen, in a refurbished firehouse in San Francisco. Unpopular among her peers, Mia suffers from a fear of public speaking while harboring a crush on Josh Bryant, and is often teased by his popular girlfriend Lana Thomas. Mia’s only friends are social outcast Lilly Moscovitz and Lilly’s older brother, Michael, who secretly harbors feelings for her.

Mia learns from her estranged paternal grandmother, Clarisse, that she is sole heir to the European kingdom of Genovia, having inherited the throne from her recently deceased father Philippe. Clarisse is determined to groom Mia into a refined princess so that she may one day rule the kingdom over which Clarisse currently presides. Overwhelmed by the discovery, Mia initially refuses until Helen convinces her to attend her grandmother’s “princess lessons” on the condition that she need not make her final decision until the Genovian Independence Day Ball in three weeks’ time.

Mia receives a glamorous makeover and a limousine chauffeured by Joe, the queen’s head of security and confidante, who becomes a father figure to her. Mia’s transformation causes her schoolmates to treat her differently, while her increasingly hectic schedule strains her relationship with Lilly. To appease her best friend, Mia tells Lilly the truth and swears her to secrecy. However, the public soon learns that Mia is a princess after the secret is sold to the press by Paolo, the hairdresser responsible for Mia’s makeover, and the paparazzi begins to pursue her relentlessly. Although Mia embarrasses herself her first state dinner, the queen admits that she found her clumsiness endearing and suggests that they spend quality time together, canceling their lessons for the following afternoon. While bonding, Clarisse explains that although Mia’s parents loved each other, they divorced amicably in order to pursue their own passions, Philippe remaining in Genovia to eventually become King, and Helen returning to America with Mia to offer her a “normal” childhood.

As Mia’s popularity grows, Josh invites her to attend a beach party with him. Mia accepts, causing her to neglect Lilly and forgo her plans with Michael. Josh kisses Mia in front of the paparazzi to bolster his own fame, while Lana helps the paparazzi photograph Mia wearing only a towel; both photographs are printed in the newspaper the following day. Finding the photos inappropriate for a princess, Clarisse admonishes Mia for her behavior, after which a humiliated Mia promises to renounce her title. Joe reminds Clarisse that Mia is still both a teenager and her granddaughter, suggesting that the queen reacted too harshly.

After making amends with Lilly, Mia finally stands up to Lana for bullying a schoolmate. Mia invites both Lilly and Michael to the ball but Michael declines, still heartbroken over Mia’s initial dismissal. After Clarisse apologizes to Mia for scolding her, she states that Mia must publicly renounce the throne at the ball. Terrified by the prospect, Mia plans to run away until she discovers a touching letter from her late father and relents. Mia’s car malfunctions while driving to the ball, stranding her in a downpour until she is retrieved by Joe.

When they finally arrive, Mia, still wet and untidy from the rain, accepts her role as Princess of Genovia while Clarisse, Helen and Lilly look on proudly. After changing into a gown, Mia accompanies Clarisse into the ballroom where Michael, who has accepted Mia’s apology, invites her to dance before proceeding to the courtyard, where they confess their feelings for each other and share their first kiss. In the final scene, Mia is shown traveling to Genovia in a private plane with her pet cat Fat Louie, and writes in her diary that she plans to relocate to Genovia with her mother.

Princess Diaries Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

With Dame Julie Andrews as a Queen and Anne Hathaway as her grand daughter, plus Hector Elizondo as Joe the Limousine driver and security. This movie couldn’t get better. Princess Diaries will live on through screen and be referenced throughout our life time. A must as a family as it is cute, funny and enjoyable.

What is your favorite scene? This one is mine.

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