Let’s not beat about the bush here. This is Disney.
Dead parent count? 4 (5 if you count evil Stepmomma’s dead husband)
Evil no-gooders? 4
Handsome dude that can pull off tight pants, boots, and smarm, and is still loved by everyone? We only need one of those. Let’s not over-egg the pudding.
A dainty doll of a pretty “princess” that’s good, kind, wholesome, and faultless? Ummm, can we count the dead mom in this? No? Ok, 1. We have 1.
The 2015 reboot of Cinderella lands in UK cinema’s on 27th March and it’s Disney. Kenneth Branagh Disney, but Disney nonetheless. If you love Disney; roll up. This ticks all of the boxes. All. Of. Them.
If, alternatively, you’re of the thinking that Disney is an insidious machine relentlessly spewing mind controlling princess / warrior programming at the susceptible and dim witted, back away from this movie. Stat. It is archetypal Disney and it might just force you over the edge.
However, if you’re bank rolling a little girl (or boy) person, who insists that this is the next ‘Frozen‘ and must be honoured with your hard earned cash “have courage” – because there will be armies of little ‘Ella’s’ with wands and princess dresses, high on sugar. “Be kind” because, like school gate etiquette, if you don’t pretend you’re loving every minute of this parent trap the others (read: mommies and daddies) will get you. They can smell your disdain for tripe, but have no fear (well, reserve just a little) there are many saving graces.
1) It’s slow in the beginning but picks up
Do not turn up expecting “Ever After” yet be very, very grateful that this is also not “Snow White and The Huntsman“. There’s a reasonable storyline and the pace, by the good grace of Branagh, is faster than the 112 minutes might have you believe.
2) Cate Blanchett
Her portrayal of the wicked stepmother is deliciously wicked.
It’s well documented that female film stars are ‘shelved’ post 40, often called on (if lucky) to play mothers, or grandmothers. In the world of Disney, formulaic plot lines, they are apparently jealous hags who dream of the halcyon days of their youth and beauty;
3) Helena Bonham Carter
She’s like the female Johnny Depp! What’s there not to like?? Plus she serves up a side dish of HBC quirk we’ve all come to know and love. It’s a pity she doesn’t receive more screen time!
4) Game of Thrones
If the cutesy curtsies do not fulfil your corset ripping fantasies feel free to use the presence of Rob Stark (Prince Charming, aka Kit) and Xaro Xhoan Daxos (The Captain) as fodder for potential Cinderella meets GoT fanfic… just, for the love of all that is good and wholesome, keep it to yourself!
5) It’s all about the dress people!
Branagh sticks very closely to the 1950’s Disney animation of Cinderella; even down to the torn pink dress that’s magicked into a shimmery puff of blue bountifulness.
If the thought of 112 minutes of Disney has you reaching for that tin foil hat, and a dram of whiskey, hold on for the dress. CGI can turn a Disney dress into a dramatic gown on steroids and Branagh doesn’t disappoint.
When all is said and done if your heart is two sizes too small... or at least two sizes smaller than that of a Disney princesses waist (and that is dangerously, dangerously small)… just “hate watch” it with that adamant little person of yours so you can join in with the “what’s up with the ridiculous waist sizes Disney??” debate;
Yeah Disney! What’s up with that?? We want a little bit of realism with our fantasy fiction!
Cinderella 2015, it’s coming!