Back in 2015, it was a massive hit: Descendants. A Disney Channel Original Movie about four teenagers trying to adjust to the outside world. Yet this one is slightly more different than you might think. These teenagers aren’t your average teenagers, they are the sons and daughters of the most malicious, wicked and evil villains Disney ever created. Playing the lead in Descendants are Mal, daughter of Maleficent, Evie, daughter of the Evil Queen, Jay, son of Jafar and Carlos, son of Cruella De Vil. This film debuted on July 31, 2015, but if you were not one of the 6.6 million viewers, here is what happened:
It’s been twenty years after Belle and Beast got married and became king and queen of the United States of Auradon. A prosperous new nation from the surrounding kingdoms, and banished the villains to the Isle of the Lost, a slum where magic is suspended and surrounded by a barrier.
When their son, Ben is on his way to becoming king at age 16 he announces his first proclamation. He gives the four kids a chance to live in Auradon and prove that they are nothing like their parents. However, the four have a secret agenda. Maleficent instructs the quartet to steal the Fairy Godmother’s magic wand to release the barrier so she can take over Auradon.
When they arrive in Auradon, Evie uses her mother’s pocket-sized magic mirror to locate the wand in a nearby museum, and Mal uses her mother’s spinning wheel (an artefact in the museum) to put the security guard to sleep. They think they have the wand, but it’s protected by a barrier and the four have no other chance than to go to school. They start to fit in with the students. Jay is recruited into the school’s Tourney team, while Carlos overcomes his fear of dogs by befriending the school’s dog, Dude. Evie tries to impress Chad, Cinderella’s son, but Dopey’s son, Doug encourages her not to pander to others and be herself. Mal becomes popular when she’s using Maleficent’s spell book to improve the looks of some of the other students, like Lonnie (Mulan’s daughter) and Jane (Fairy Godmother’s daughter).
The task Maleficent had planned for them is still in their minds. After learning that Fairy Godmother will use the wand at Ben’s coronation and that Ben’s ‘girlfriend’ will be seated close to the wand during the coronation, Mal bakes a cookie laced with a love potion and gives it to Ben. He falls madly in love with her, much to his friends’ shock. She is even announced as his girlfriend to Belle and Beast on the school’s family day. The villain kids run into Audrey’s grandmother Queen Leah who gets into an argument with Mal. Leah says that Maleficent’s curse was the reason she missed Aurora’s childhood. This makes Mal so mad that she ends all the beauty spell she used and the villain kids are banned.
At Ben’s coronation, Mal gives him a brownie containing the love spell’s antidote, believing it is unnecessary to keep him under the spell. However, Ben reveals he was already freed of the spell since their date when he went swimming in the Enchanted Lake, believing that Mal only did it because she really liked him. During Ben’s crowning, a disillusioned Jane grabs the wand from her mother, wanting to improve her beauty, only for her to accidentally destroy the Isle’s barrier. Mal takes the wand from Jane but is torn over what to do. Mal recognises that she and her friends found happiness in Auradon, and they choose to be good.
Because the barrier is slightly damaged, Maleficent crashes the ceremony, freezing everyone except herself and the four villain kids. What follows is a battle between Mal and her mother in which the latter transforms herself into a dragon. Mal and her friends use a counterspell, turning Maleficent into a lizard based on the amount of love in her heart. Mal returns Fairy Godmother her wand as she unfreezes everyone and fixes the barrier. While the villains watch the celebration from afar, Auradon Prep’s student’s party through the night, with Mal and her friends finding happiness.
I can’t begin to tell you how much I enjoyed this movie. I might be (slightly) too old to be part of the focus group, but the quality of this movie reminded me of the ‘old’ Disney Channel movies, like High School Musical. There are a few things that I find kind of strange or would love to know though. Like who are the other fathers and mothers of the villain kids? And how does it come that they only have their villain parent around and not their other (non-villain?) parent. The other unusual thing is Ben’s coronation at his age. He is only 16 when he is crowned king and as far as I can tell, Beast would be totally capable of running Auradon for a couple more years!
Anyway, the reason why I’m telling you this is because the second instalment of Descendants is on its way! Keep an eye out on The Game Of Nerds for the latest news on Descendants 2 which airs on July 21st!
Curious about the music? Or can get enough of it? Hear the album on Spotify