|Produced by||Jennifer Blohm|
|Music by||Joel McNeely|
|Edited by||Pam Ziegenhagen|
|Distributed by||Walt Disney Home Entertainment|
Mulan II is a 2004 American direct-to-video animated musical adventure film directed by Darrell Rooney and Lynne Southerland. It is a sequel to the 1998 theatrically-released Disney animated film Mulan, featuring songs by Jeanine Tesori and Alexa Junge. Much of the cast from the first film returned, excluding Eddie Murphy (Mushu), Miriam Margolyes (The Matchmaker), James Hong (Chi-Fu), Chris Sanders (Little Brother), and Matthew Wilder (Ling's singing voice). Murphy and Margolyes were replaced by Mark Moseley and April Winchell, respectively; Little Brother was voiced by Frank Welker, and Gedde Watanabe does his own singing for the sequel. Mulan II features Mulan and her new fiancé, General Li Shang on a special mission: escorting the Emperor's three daughters across the country to meet their soon-to-be fiancés. The film deals with arranged marriages, loyalty, relationships, making choices, trust, and finding true love. Unlike its predecessor, which gained critical acclaim, Mulan II was poorly received by critics.
A month after the events of the first film, General Shang asks Fa Mulan for her hand in marriage, and she happily accepts. Hearing about their engagement, Mushu is thrilled for them, until the leader of the ancestors informs him that if Mulan marries Shang, she would become a part of his family, which would mean that Shang's family ancestors and guardians would become hers. The ancestors are happy with this because it means that Mushu will lose his job as a guardian dragon and have to leave Mulan and his pedestal, which is his place of honor as a guardian. Wanting to keep his job and his friend, Mushu attempts to tear the couple apart, having noticed that they are not very compatible, while Cri-Kee tries to foil his attempts, and keep the couple together. Meanwhile, the Emperor calls upon Mulan and Shang to escort his three daughters, Princesses Ting-Ting, Mei, and Su, across China to be betrothed to three princes so that an alliance can be formed with the kingdom of Qui Gong, ruled by the evil Lord Qin, who plans to have his son marry Mulan. If the task is not completed within three days, the alliance will crumble, and the Mongols will destroy China.
Mulan and Shang set out, along with Yao, Ling and Chien-Po, to safely escort the princesses to their new kingdom. Along the way, Ting-Ting, Mei, and Su fall in love with Ling, Yao, and Chien-Po, respectively. Mulan, who has long believed arranged marriages are wrong, decides to go against her orders and, despite Shang's wishes, stop the joining of the kingdoms.
Mushu attempts to cause problems for Mulan and Shang, but keeps on failing several times. In despair, he causes the carriage to roll away with Ting-Ting, Mei, Su, Yao, Ling, and Chien-Po. Seeing that they're heading towards a cliff, Mulan and Shang rush to the rescue, and try to get the princesses to safety. This fails, and the carriage is destroyed while everyone falls into the river, unharmed.
On the night of the carriage's destruction, Chien-Po, Ling, and Yao take the princesses out to a village, and declare their love for them. Meanwhile, Mushu tricks Shang into thinking Mulan is taking advantage of him. Shang was furious, He orders everyone to return and forbids Chien-Po, Ling and Yao from speaking to the Princesses. After a very heated argument, Mulan and Shang realize they are far too different and end their relationship. While traveling through bandit country, Mushu, overwhelmed with guilt, confesses to Mulan what he had done and reveals that he is the mastermind behind Qin's evil plan. Although Mulan is angered by what Mushu tried to do, at the same time, she is delighted about the news, and she attempts to reconcile with Shang, only to be attacked by bandits moments later. While saving the princesses, the bridge Mulan and Shang are standing on breaks, leaving the two dangling off by a loose rope. Realizing that the rope can only support the weight of one person, Shang risks his life to save Mulan just like she saved him a month ago, and allows himself to fall into the river below.
Saddened by Shang's apparent death, Mulan continues on the trip alone to Qui Gong. Not wanting the princesses to be forced into a loveless marriage, she offers herself to marry one of the ruler's sons. Shang, who actually survived the fall, soon hears about the news, and rushes to stop the marriage, but the ruler denies it. Mushu decides to help by pretending to be the Great Golden Dragon of Unity, and forces the ruler to stop the marriage. Still under the guise of the Great Golden Dragon, Mushu marries Mulan and Shang, with their marriage apparently being the one to unite the two kingdoms, and releases the princesses from their vows. Some time later, Mulan and Shang officially get married back home, and after the wedding, Shang combines the family temples, meaning that Mushu gets to keep his job, much to the ancestors' dismay. In his happiness, Mushu accidentally reveals himself to Shang, even though Mulan had already told Shang about him, as she has no secrets from her husband.
|Soundtrack album by |
|Released||January 25, 2005|
According to Scott Gwin of CinemaBlend, "Mulan II is a direct-to-DVD disgrace that takes everything excellent about its predecessor film, rips it to shreds, and uses it for rat cage lining." Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, gave the film a rating of 0% based on reviews from 5 critics, with an average score of 3.9/10. Reviewer Robert Pardi gave the film a 2 out of 5 star rating, saying, "The original Mulan was heralded for adding a spunky heroine to the Disney canon of distressed princesses, but despite its excellent voice cast, this sequel merely apes the success of live-action martial arts films".
In early 2002, it was reported that Disney was working on Mulan III. Raymond Singer and Eugenia Bostwick-Singer, writers of the first film, submitted two stories to Disney, in which they suggested a new character named Ana Ming. Like this film, the second sequel would have been released direct-to-video, but it was canceled before the release of Mulan II.