It has been 18 long years. Finally, our favorite doll who sparkles and shines like no other returns to the television screen for a festive sequel. After what seemed like many years of fans begging Tyra Banks on Twitter to bring back the movie they spent their childhoods watching on Disney Channel, “Life-Size 2: A Christmas Eve” gives fans all of the cringe-worthy moments reminiscent of the original that we can’t help but love.
Francia Raisa, known for her role as Ana in Freeform’s “Grown-ish,” stars as Grace, a young CEO of Marathon Toys. Grace’s mother, currently in jail, founded the company and is credited with creating the Eve doll. With the company struggling, Grace ends up agreeing to discontinue the doll in order to keep the empire afloat.
In comes Grace’s young neighbor, played by Alison Fernandez, who hears about the possible disappearance of Eve and is outraged. In true “Life Size” fashion, the spell “zomba tarka ishtu nebarim” is brought to our attention once again as the young neighbor, Lex, decides to bring Grace’s old Eve doll back to life in hopes that she could save the company from plummeting.
For hardcore supporters of the lovable classic, it was quite difficult to imagine this reboot without Lindsay Lohan reprising her role as Casey. Although Lohan wasn’t able to film this sequel, the makers of the film made sure that Casey’s presence was still relevant to the plot. The same book of the dead Casey used reappears and a picture of Casey in her football gear from the first movie is shown within the book — a cute little tribute to the original.
As predicted, Eve, played by the ever-so fierce Tyra Banks, wakes up next to Grace the next morning and ends up blurting out the line we all were waiting for: “I’m Eve and you’re my special friend!” Grace, not believing that it is actually her Eve doll, is soon flabbergasted when she sees the serial number on Eve’s foot. Now that Eve is brought back to life, it is up to her to convince Grace to save the Eve doll vanishing from the store shelves.
The fan-favorite bread and butter scene from “Life Size” is crafted into the script in the most over-exaggerated way — comparable to Banks and her shenanigans on the American talk show masterpiece, “The Tyra Banks Show”. Fans might remember the over-the-top episode where Tyra pranks the audience members into thinking she has rabies. It just goes to show that Banks is no stranger to acting a fool on camera, and we all love her for it.
Fans of Tyra Banks will be pleased to not only find references from Eve’s debut, but also America’s Next Top Model. When Grace is hesitant to change her mind about discontinuing the Eve Doll, Eve calls Sunnyville on her toy mobile phone and another Eve doll tells her, “We were all rooting for you!” Fun moments that pay tribute to Banks and her red hair remind us all of the meme content she’s has given the world.
This movie does have its odd and cringe-worthy moments as well. There is a lot of innuendo throughout the script that wouldn’t have been seen in the first movie, but it makes sense since it is catered to the same kids that grew up watching the original. There are some unexpected cameos from CNN’s Van Jones and celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton as well. However, we’ll let it slide because the creators were just aiming for a good-hearted holiday movie that gave the fans nostalgic moments.
Ask anyone who has watched the original and they will most likely to be able to recite the words to Eve’s theme song, “Be A Star,” word for word. In order to appeal to the modern obsession with trap music, “Be A Star” is remixed for a presentation regarding a revamped Eve doll at the end of the movie. Eve raps “Woke is woke, love is love/ We for real, that’s what’s up/ Thick and thin, short and tall/ Dimpled booty, we love it all,” which wins the hearts of the audience and calls for the Eve doll to return to the company.
“Life Size 2” achieved a mixture of millennial nostalgia with the essence of Generation Z it was supposed to create. With all the over-the-top and just plain weird scenes aside, fans should just be pleased that we got to see Eve and all her fabulous glory once again and share her with a new generation. This only further proved that Eve will truly live on forever. We thank her for all of the laughs and lessons she’s given us along the way.