Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Ultimate Disney List 5: "Mulan II"

She's got a mission to attend to...
right after her wedding!


      Mulan II is a 2005 direct-to-DVD sequel to original 1998 animated film. Directed by Darrell Rooney (The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride) and Lynne Southerland and written by Michael Lucker (Vampire in Brooklyn), Chris Parker (Heaven Is for Real) and Roger S.H. Schulman (Shrek), the film follows Mulan (Ming-Na Wen) as she gets engaged to Shang (BD Wong), but first must bring the Emperor (Pat Morita)'s three daughters (Lucy Liu, Sandra Oh and Lauren Tom) to fulfill their arranged marriage and protect China from another war. Mushu (Mark Moseley), has other plans however, planning on breaking Mulan and Shang up or else lose his job. All the while, Mulan struggles with the concept of arranged marriage and everyone turns into horrible monster people. Or, at least, that's what I got out of it.

TV quality? What TV quality?
Fun While It Lasted

      It was only a matter of time before I had to address the direct-to-DVD sequels. Trust me, I'd like to pretend they don't exists just as much as I'm sure all of you already have. But, I gotta be fair and give them a look. But man was I not expecting this. Mulan II was the very first one I watched, at least for this series, and already, it's one of the absolute worst animated films I have ever seen. Seriously. The very first one made me angrier than I've been since The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle. And that's pretty damn mad. I mean, how did they f*ck this one up so badly? Sure, the voice acting is fine, seeing as how most of the original cast returns. And the animation is surprisingly good. But, holy shit that story. THAT STORY. I have never seen a sequel turn such likable characters and make them so utterly horrendous so fast is worthy of an award in it's own right.

War Torn

      The story of Mulan being against arranged marriage makes no sense, especially seeing as how she was, you know, upset about not getting one in the last movie. It's like the filmmakers didn't understand the last one. The matchmaker scene was to set her up for an arranged marriage. And yet Mulan is here complaining that people should follow their heart. Nice thought, except these girls are being married in order to, you know, prevent a war. Following their heart will literally lead to the deaths of thousands. But it turns out real duty is to yourself, so f*ck the rest of those people, you're in LUV! Mushu is an irredeemable prick in this one, who's around more and even more annoying. The new songs are all shameless rip-off of the first films, even completely redoing "A Girl Worth Fighting For" entirely. But the worst thing is the infuriating story. The film is completely destroying China's culture here for the sake of some bullshit message about LUV! Even with the mercifully short runtime, the film still feels like an unending slog.

DEAD EYES!!!!!!!!!!
The Verdict

      Mulan II is already one of the worst things I've seen ever put to animation. This review couldn't accurately capture on goddamn insane this movie is with it's characters and logic. Characters' personalities change at the drop of the hat, Mulan is now a self-righteous jerk who put heart before the lives of thousands, the songs are awful, but at least the animation is nice. Ish. This urine-filled garbage bag of a sequel insults not just the fans of the original movie, just entire country's history. But hey, LUV! I swear when Awfully Direct comes back... Mulan II gets 1 star out of 6.

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