Watch The Princess (2022) Movie Review And Mp4 Trailer


Watch The Princess (2022) Movie Review And Mp4 Trailer

“She refuses death time and time again.”

That is the main premise of Hulu's "The Princess," as stated by Julius, the film's terrifying antagonist (Dominic Cooper). The dialogue in this script, written by Ben Lustig and Jake Thornton, frequently borders on parody since it is so direct and on-the-nose with its own ideas. As the bad guys explicitly told the main character, a nameless lady played by Joey King, "You should know your place," I wasn't sure how seriously I was expected to take the film's message of women power.

It's a fantasy-action movie with a focus on female empowerment, which is admirable in theory but comes out as exploitative in this instance. (I did consider whether there might be a version that is more authentic but wasn't written by two men and wasn't directed by another.) Le-Van Kiet's action movie is passably exciting, but the rest of it hangs on a skeleton that feels incredibly flimsy. In "The Raid" meets "Game of Thrones" meets "Charlie's Angels," evil characters battle a weak woman who slaughters scores of them. Oh, it makes it sound like much more fun than it actually is. It certainly sounds as enjoyable as it should have been.

In a standard "plot" part of a review of "The Princess," there isn't much to say. Atop a tower, our protagonist awakens confined to a bed. She eliminates two soldiers who arrive to check on her in the humorous opening sequence of the movie before starting her descent down the tower and killing innocent bystanders along the way. In a flashback, it is revealed that the princess was going to marry Julius, whose only goal was to take control of a kingdom whose King (Ed Stoppard) and Queen had failed to produce a male heir (Alex Reid). She declined when she found out at the altar that she would be a quiet collaborator in Julius' rule as a power-hungry sociopath, which resulted in a harsh approach. Julius, his accomplice Moira (Olga Kurylenko), and their utterly inept warriors are imprisoning the King, the Queen, and the majority of the populace of the Kingdom. Most of them will be killed by the Princess.

By shifting between his gory rage and flashbacks to how his title character got there, including her martial arts and swordfighting training, Kiet makes a critical structural error in "The Princess." We don't need to know how this killer became into a killer. Imagine if the backstory in "The Raid" kept releasing the tension. It's completely counterproductive. It's obviously intended to give the admittedly superficial characters some depth, but it falls short and feels more like a diversion than a backstory. A script like this needs to either set things up with rich, detailed characters or ignore that altogether and focus only on action. This one gets stuck in the middle.

When “The Princess” does foreground its combat, it can be pretty fun. There’s an excellent sequence down a spiral staircase wherein King takes on dozens of enemies, but the film has a disappointing habit of bursting to life and then retreating. Kiet can’t maintain momentum and Lustig & Thornton’s script just isn’t creative enough to fill in the gaps. The only reason to watch really is for Joey King, an underrated actress who is open to any challenge. If only this film was confident enough to really give her one.

On Hulu today.

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