A gold-plated gate marked KP leads to a hot pink and baby blue painted castle. A portrait of Marie Antoinette (Katy Perry) hangs on the wall. Three maidens wait for Marie Antoinette. One blows a horn. A groggy Antoinette wakes up, wearing a spray painted Mozart t-shirt, and takes off her eye mask. She throws a pillow.
A butler hands her a plastic cup of Napoleon’s Coffee and she sips it as she lays in bed. Another servant hands her phone. She answers Prince Phillip’s call. As they Facetime, he asks if they are ready for their date. She cringes and says yes. She sits back on her pillow and puts her hand over her face.
Her maidens clean her chastity belt and slap her hand if she attempts to reach for a non-approved wig, like the mohawk. They spray make up on her face and tighten the strings of her corset. She faints from the lack of oxygen.
During lunch, her maidens eat cake. She digs into a bowl of Takis. As she walks down the hallway, she trips on her heels. She sees a book titled Joan and imagines herself as Joan of Arc. She yields a sword and cuts one of her corsets. Her maidens would gorge on cake.
Prince Phillip exhales smoke in Antoinette’s direction, asking her “sup girl?” He licks a carrot and she Facetimes Lord Markus. While on the phone with Lord Markus, she mimes gagging and he tells her to “get out of there.” Prince Phillip sniffs her hair and she imagines the roasted pig as him, making kissing noises at her. She returns to her Joan of Arc fantasy.
In the Joan of Arc fantasy, she attacks Prince Phillip with her sword as the other noblemen dance behind her. She defeats him.
At the puppet show, Prince Phillip laughs beside her. The Marie Antoinette puppet knocks things over. Prince Phillip points to her and she glares at him. They dance at the ball and he opens his mouth, waggling his tongue at her. She slaps him and he threatens her. He laughs as she is hauled away.
The Queen commands “off” to her servants and Antoinette is beheaded at the guillotine. People clap. Joan of Arc emerges and holds up Antoinette’s head. She runs after Prince Phillip.
Marie Antoinette, the 15-year-old French princess, would rather play the field and go to school than be a political figure. She’s a clumsy teenager saddled to a masochist husband obsessed with sex. She imagines herself as a strong, female with her own agency and ability to fight back. She wishes she could be Joan of Arc, a woman with a higher purpose.
Life in the palace, although cushy with friends paid to wait on her, has a price. Prince Phillip mocks her, commissioning staff to put on puppet shows featuring her destroying things. The Queen despises her, viewing her as a liability rather than a family member. Antoinette’s quotes in the newspapers have led to their approval rating going down and empowering French citizens to overthrow them.
With the passage of the current Tax Bill in the United States, Perry’s sympathetic Antoinette becomes problematic. A princess known for siding with an out of control government and stating “let them eat cake” as citizens starved, is a slap in a face to the average American who will suffer from the bill. It also undermines any progressive opinions she holds.
Director: N/A Year: 2017
Pam Avoledo’s love of pop culture began in 1999 with the message boards dedicated to shows on the CW (then WB). She graduated from Oakland University in 2006 with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism.
When she is not debating whether Dawson should’ve ended up with Joey, she looks at cute dog memes on social media.