Cinderella Review

So I watched Cinderella…

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One of the latest trends in Hollywood seems to be live-action adaptations of classic Disney fairytales. Now, I don’t have a problem with this as long as the spirit that made the original animation a success is preserved. I was really disappointed with Maleficient because I just didn’t think it stayed true to the original. Oh, and since Frozen it seems like fairytales are afraid to go for the typical Prince Charming saves the day storyline. I’m really glad that this movie stayed true to its roots.

Okay, basic plot: revisit the classic fairytale that started every fear children have about their parents divorcing, their fathers remarrying and ending up with a wicked stepmother.

ca34bed28390551fba098cd767f59d8aThe best thing about this movie has to be Lily James as Cinderella. The problem with live-action adaptions of any animated story really, not just fairytales, is that the whimsy and charm of the characters is often lost. Things have to be adjusted and the actor playing the character ends up either being too dull or over-the-top and goofy. James manages to sidestep this problem and gives a performance that has all the heart and warmth of the original Cinderella but also adds a corporeal concreteness that makes Cinderella translate well to live-action. She’s funny, charming and embodies the adorableness that defines a Disney princess. Her performance in this movie is so good that I actually wanna start watching Downton Abbey, just so I can see more of her.

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I actually enjoyed all the acting in this movie. The prince is charming, the stepsisters are evil and Cate Blanchett as the stepmother isĀ as close to evil as you can get without horns and a pitchfork…but she isn’t quite wicked. I don’t know what it is but live-action adaptions of fairytales just haven’t figured out how to make the villain truly despicable. I mean Angelina Jolie’s Maleficient promised to be terrifying but didn’t quite deliver; Merly Streep’s evil witch – in Into The Woods – tried to be devious but even she didn’t quite hit the mark.

cind4Cate Blanchett is an amazing actress and she does an amazing job in this movie, as the evil stepmother, but she’s never quite wicked. I think this was more because of the limitations put on her by the screenwriter that led to her inability to properly portray the character.

I want to see a villain that makes small children cry; someone who makes grown men shudder with fear. I don’t know what the next fairytale to get a live-adaptation will be; but I hope they go all out with the villain. Don’t just get a good actor, write a script that makes this villain truly memorable.

Speaking of scripts, I really enjoyed this movie’s. It doesn’t try to be overly realistic just because it’s live-action but it also isn’t so hilariously over the top that it comes off as cheesy. It’s really genuine and manages to stick to the original Disney classic whilst bringing in a few moments of original delight.

I liked this movie a lot more than I thought it would. It’s well-paced and full of humour and charm. Lily James puts in a great performance and brings Cinderella to the ‘real’ world like no one before her has. A really fun movie 8/10

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