What if The Princess Bride (1987) but Die Hard (1988)? What if Tangled (2010) but The Raid (2011)? What if we took the quite welcome trend towards agency for female characters in genre fare to its logical and bloody conclusion? What if the scene in Shrek (2001) where Princess Fiona does kung fu, but for 94 minutes? What if, when the princess is chained up in the tower and two goons come to drag her away to whatever awfulness awaits, she dislocates her fucking thumb and beats the living shit out of them with her manacles?

That happens in the opening scene of The Princess. After one soon-to-meet-his-maker baddie snarls, “you think you’re gonna make it all the way to the bottom?” the titular character (Joey King) calmly replies, “I’ll see you down there” and kicks him out the goddamn window, whereupon he plummets to his doom (his mate is already rapidly cooling on the cobbles with a hairpin in his brain).

First of all: coooooool. Second of all: Definitely not the movie we were expecting, right? But at least you already know by this point if you’re on board or you’re not. If you’re not (I can imagine a few accidental clicks on the princess-packed Disney+ interface, where this thing can be found), you can hit the eject button now, but if you’re down with this sickness, you’re champing at the bit because third of all: how good is this opening scene? It tells you everything you need to know. She’s at the top of the tower; she has to get to the bottom of the tower; there are bad guys between the former and the latter, but she’s a pint-sized powerhouse with absolutely no compunction about murderlising cunts. Let’s fucking goooo …

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