So the fairies stare at our heroes, their faces a combination of friendliness, extreme boredom, and superiority, respectively.
Gertrude says hello, and that Maya and Joey have “done well”, but “today is not your day”.
“I have brought powerful fairies with me this time! I brought Lorris, who has the power with her index finger to turn any human into stone. Lorris has touched some of your people, as you may have seen.”
Hang on a second. So…I assume that we’re supposed to believe the people who just fell over dead were turned to stone by Lorris? I mean, obviously they didn’t change color or anything like that, but setting that aside, Lorris didn’t actually touch them. So is she able to kill people with her Deadly Index Finger from a distance, and if so, why doesn’t she just kill Maya and Joey immediately?
Alternately, if she’s able to turn herself invisible and that’s how she touched those people, why didn’t she touch Maya and Joey immediately instead of offing a couple random redshirts?
Gertrude explains that she also brought “Ceara, who can breathe on anything and burn it to flames.” And honestly, I’m just glad they left out the line about how she’s the most beautiful black person in the kingdom.
Ceara cranes her neck back a bit like she’s trying walk into a wall chin-first and says “Let me show you how it works!” and gives an Evil Witchlike Cackle.
We cut over to Maya staring blankly off into space. “Oh no,” she says, with the intensity of someone reading the phone book, “what do you want?”
Gertrude says the fairies have an offer. Oraculus jumps in and says it’s just another “diabolical trick” but Gertrude assures them that it’s an honest offer, and that they want to let the people go. We cut over to three random peasants in a shot that was very clearly filmed on a different day with different lighting and probably a different, inferior camera, come to think of it. The peasants draw their samurai swords and ask if everyone will be let go. Lorris says yes, but on one condition.
Oraculus says, “Told you, here it comes.” Okay, I actually kind of like that line. It’s sarcastic and funny enough that I wonder who wrote it.
Lorris barks “Shut up, you fool!” which I really want to make into a text message notification sound. Gertrude explains the condition is Maya and Joey give themselves as a human sacrifice to King Apollyon and then everyone else can go free.
At this, Joey is all what the hell do you mean, “give ourselves”, so Ceara specifies that they’ll need to lie down on the wooden table and they’ll bind them. With ropes. So they won’t jump when it gets too hot. Presumably to then be killed to death. This will take place during the fairies’ “worship of ceremonies”, which is a real phrase spoken by a woman in this movie. Notice I didn’t say actress. I’m pretty sure she’s reading her lines off cue cards.
Maya is not too keen on being burned alive to worship this “Trinity of evil”, which I guess is a term she made up on the spot. Ceara tells her to take it easy, because it’s actually by their own free will that they’ll be burned alive. Sure. It’s like the mob boss who walks into your store and says “Nice store you got here. Be a shame if anything happened to it. I guess you could cough up some protection dough and we could make sure your store doesn’t burn to the ground and you don’t fall down a flight of stairs and break both your kneecaps.”
Regardless, this entire scene is stupid as fuck. Let’s take the fairies’ point of view: they need to wipe out Maya and Joey and end this rebellion. If Maya and Joey sacrifice themselves in some heroic act to save the peasants, their status is immediately elevated to legendary martyrs who sacrificed themselves and will inspire more people to fight against King Apollyon.
Alternately, maybe nobody will be let go and the fairies are planning on murdering everyone. If they are going to, they must have the power to murder everyone, and if they have the power to murder everyone why in the sweet name of AstroJesus doesn’t Lorris start boinking everyone on the nose with her Deadly Index Finger, starting with Maya and Joey, while Ceara torches everything that tries to get away?
Anyway, Joey is perturbed and says he needs to consult with his sister and pulls Maya away. Gertrude encourages them to take their time, but warns them…well, actually she just kind’ve mutters to not leave the camp. Lorris even jumps in to echo “Take your time” because the Tesches have an industrial-strength hard-on for repeating lines of dialogue. The fairies all laugh dramatically.
We cut over to Joey staring into the abyss, pumping himself up for the scene that will win him his first Oscar.
Maya is sitting next to him, making unconvincing sniffling sounds and talking about how she wants to go home and see her mom, which, I should remind you, was lifted directly from the books. It sounds dumber when you hear an actual human being say it, obviously, but at least they’re being authentic to the source material.
Joey mutters something about needing to get out of there because the monsters are going to kill them. Maya tries to encourage him:
“I believe that maybe a miracle will happen.”
Belief in a maybe means nothing. I mean, I believe that MAYBE someday I’ll be seated next to Emma Watson on a plane and she’ll be all “You make fun of stupid books on the internet? Let’s make out.” But realistically, that’s not going to happen.
Maya says they have a decision to make, and, for what it’s worth, this scene does a great job to illustrate the difference in acting abilities between Michael Rodriguez and Gloria Tesch. Michael is by no means a good actor, but he does have actual tears on his face and a convincing sniffle.
They profess their love for each other and say that it’s a test and I really wish the director had been able to frame up a two shot, rather than just cutting back and forth between characters:
While he’s on it, maybe he could put the camera a few inches lower so we could see the character’s faces instead of staring at the top of their heads.
Maya and Joey hug it out, then head over to the fairies. Maya explains they “absolutely oppose” the witches’ plan and that when they die, they’re dying for YOU and YOUR FREEDOM. This might mean a bit more if we could see any of the peasants from the army or if it wasn’t shot like Maya was staring directly at the three fairies and saying she was dying for the fairies’ freedom, but hey.
Also the background has changed and now Maya is standing on a sandy pseudo-beach. I assume they had to change locations between filming to find the best angle for Maya’s big monologue.
Maya adds in a misquoted Bible verse:
“I read in the good book: that he wants to win his life will lose it, but he who loses his life for the sake of his friends will win his life.”
Ceara is very upset by this and shouts about how this is nonsense over sound effects of Nazgul and children screaming. She shouts “No one believes this foolishness!” Well, if you’re talking about the Bible, actually a lot of people do.
We immediately cut to stock footage of an eagle flying, and then two pairs of feet tied to a table and moving around, exactly unlike how it would happen if Maya and Joey had consented to be burned to death.
Ceara says a prayer about how they have a burnt offering and we cut to flames superimposed over feet tied to a table. There’s only a single pair of feet now, but I don’t actually expect scene to scene continuity anymore. There’s sound effects of Joey and Maya hyperventilating in preparation for their death scene, but now that there’s an actual fire and you would expect the feet to be flailing around in agony, they’re completely still. Also it’s a completely different time of day, but hey.
We get a shot of our heroes freaking the fuck out with digital flames covering about a third of the screen. Maya screams “They’re burning us alive!” because people being brutally murdered generally narrate what is happening to everyone around them.
There’s a shot of the sun over dramatic music I would describe as “Hercule Poirot has found a clue!”, CGI lightning flashes across the screen, and suddenly an armored man appears and flies down to stick a superhero landing:
He jumps up and introduces himself as Dionysus, and rambles for a bit about being the breath of life that commands things to return to life, which is hard to focus on when all I can see is that he’s clearly wearing a white polo shirt under his armor. Dionysus concludes with “Release them” and a couple peasants untie Maya and Joey. Dionysus says the fairies “rejoice in doing evil.”
Smash cut to the three fairies who are very upset about their foolproof plan to burn Maya and Joey to death. Gertrude screams: “I don’t believe it! The dead people are alive!” which would make a lot more sense if Maya and Joey had actually died. But setting that aside…Lorris has been replaced by a different actress.
I’m not fucking with you. They changed actors for a part…in the same fucking scene.
To their credit, they did keep the shot barely brief, as if they knew this was a bit of a faux paus but the originally actress had bailed because she realized this was a shit movie, or more likely, the check didn’t clear, so they were all “Nobody is going to be paying that much attention to this film, let’s throw in another blonde chuck and who’s going to notice?” They probably won’t even notice the complete change in background color and lighting! And, for that matter, the first time I watched this movie, I didn’t notice, but that might have been due to all the liquor inside my body.
Ceara says they’re dealing with higher powers and they should leave before the higher powers “harms us”. Ceara is not great at grammar.
“Not so fast, sister!” Gertrude replies. “Dionysus showed us his power. Let’s show him our power!”
The other fairies agree so Gertrude takes a few seconds to awkwardly stare off into space while she tries to remember her next line. Eventually she figures it out and summons three warriors who magically appear and jog out from the underbrush.
The wizard Oraculus isn’t pleased by this and says “Watch this!” and shoots magic from his staff. There’s a minor explosion about eight feet from the warriors:
Undeterred, Oraculus shouts “And this!” and levels his staff off-screen:
Which causes another minor explosion of dirt in the face of the bad guys. Oraculus cackles in triumph and then the bad guys jog up to join the group so it turns out Oraculus didn’t do anything whatsoever and continues to be a thoroughly useless character except for the fact he was able to delay the bad guys about a second and a half.
One of the warriors starts fighting Dionysus. If you’ve ever been to a Renaissance festival and watched a couple beefy, armored guys fight each other with swords while taking extreme care to not accidentally hit each other with their swords, you’ve seen this fight scene. It’s made even better by the fact that the music playing under this scene is the same music you’d hear if you were watching a documentary about hummingbirds aimed at first-graders.
Dionysus kicks the first guy in the chest, accompanied by a sound effect that sounds like a basketball being dribbled once and then some heavy reverb added in post. They do that thing where there’s a bunch of bad guys but they all wait helpfully about six feet back until it’s their turn to attack instead of wandering up and stabbing Dionysus in the back.
To take away the credit, nothing happens in this shot and there was literally no reason why it needed to be included at all.
Anyway, Dionysus disarms a guy and his axe sort’ve kind’ve falls to the ground, and instead of picking it up when Dionysus turns to the other bad guy, he just leaves it there [!] and stands around for a few seconds until he runs up and shoves Dionysus in the chest, then pulls out a few more axes and attacks. In other words, he could have killed Dionysus except he was too stupid to use a weapon instead of a light shove.
Eventually, one of the bad guys does a bunch of fancy sword twirls and Dionysus is having none of that shit so he waves his hand and the guy’s sword goes flying. Dionysus sets his own sword down, for some reason, then lets the bad guy run up and land several ineffectual punches on his chest before knocking him down, and then uses the Force to incapacitate the last guy. Apparently Dionysus can knock people unconscious with a wave of his fingers but prefers fighting because it makes him look like a badass or something.
The fairies stare at him and try to look a little bit afraid or maybe constipated.
And that’s it. End of scene. Apparently the fairies left and so did Dionysus. I hope you didn’t like Dionysus, because we’ll never hear from him again.