Confession: I am a romantic.
It's debatable when this became true, although I'm fairly certain it officially began in a theater in Phoenix, Arizona in 1998.
I was nine years old. I have an inkling there were signs of my Jane-Austen-loving soul long before then, but this movie-going experience is the first one I can think of that has hefty significance.
Ever After was, and is, the perfect movie.
I've often dreamed out-loud to my husband about how I would absolutely die of happiness if I could plan an Ever After themed trip, where we would travel to France and visit all of the filming locations of this delightful movie. There are many reasons why I love it so, but on this blessed Friday I have chosen to highlight a few to let you all in on why it is so very dear to my heart.
1. It Makes Me Cry
|One of my very favorite scenes.|
Don't get me wrong, I cry ugly sad tears in this movie as well. But for the perfect movie, tears are a must.
Oh, the love of books!
Most of it stems from the treasured influence of Danielle's father, who was a great teacher and loved to share his insights on science and philosophy with his young daughter. When he died, the last book he brought home to her, Utopia, became quite arguably her most prized possession. In fact, her application of its principals is one of the initial reasons she catches the attention of Prince Henry. He realizes this strength in her and later takes her to an astonishing library, hoping to woo her. She is, of course, completely woo'd. Because books!
When he asks her to pick one, she says with wonder, I could no sooner choose a star in the heavens!
Her passion stuns him, because he is just a rich lost boy looking for his place in this world. Danielle is able to guide him with her sharp tongue and wise words, all of which she owes to her father and his gift of books.
3. The Soundtrack
Try listening to "Utopia" or "The Homecoming" or even just the main "Ever After" theme without wanting to bawl your eyes out, travel the world, renew your hope in humanity or just fly away on your newfound wings.
This soundtrack is a piece of art, and is one of the biggest reasons why this movie gets me every time.
George Fenton, you angel, you.
4. It Looks Like Rain
The fact that Leonardo da Vinci is in this movie at all is fantastic, but it's even better that he plays such a delightfully important character.
His creative spirit inspires Prince Henry, and his solid advice and sweet (albeit sarcastic at times) personality play a big role in the central love story.
The above sequence, in which he spouts "It looks like rain!" may be one of my favorite moments in cinematic history.
5. The Gypsy Kiss
After their trip to the wooing library, Danielle is forced to save the prince's life from gypsies. They turn out to be good-hearted gypsies, thank the heavens, but it starts out pretty rough.
Talk about a quirky side story that we all love.
The best part? She saves him by picking him up when the gypsy leader announces that he will let her leave with "anything she can carry". So cheeky.
The gypsies erupt in laughter, and they go on as friends. In the heart of the gypsy camp near a warm cozy fire, Danielle and Prince Henry share wine, secrets, and eventually their magical first kiss.
It was the kiss to measure all other kisses by.
Well, at least... according to my 9-year-old self, it was.
(Let's be honest, according to my 24-year old self, too.)
I still get the goosebumps of justice when Marguerite finally gets that punch in the face she's been begging for the entire film.
Even though the result of this altercation leads to some of the ugly sad crying I mentioned earlier, (namely when Marguerite oozes pure evil and burns Danielle's beloved copy of Utopia), I still agree with the other not-so-evil step sister, Jacqueline:
I shall never forget the way Marguerite's feet went up over her head like that.
For a girl of the 90's, this was the ultimate kicker. Cinderella with rhinestones.
I don't know about you, but I bought an abhorrent amount of roll-on glitter sticks and tubes of glitter lotions and body sprays as an adolescent. This movie may be to blame.
If I could steal and perfectly replicate any look for Halloween (or just any ol' Friday night), it would be this one.
What are your favorite Ever After moments? What would you add to this list?
I would so love to know.
Happy Friday friends.