Princess’ World Gets Aesthetic Boost, Strong Cast to Support
By Matthew McKenna
While audiences watch the new Disney live-action “Cinderella” remake, they will have these words in mind: “magical,” “stunning,” and “cheerful.”
Kenneth Branagh, who directed “Thor” and “A Midwinter’s Tale,” made this film with charm and chooses a brilliant cast. It features Lily James, Cate Blanchett, “Game of Thrones’” Richard Madden, and Helena Bonham Carter from the “Harry Potter” franchise. This movie may be rated PG, but this is one for anyone to see, young or old, boy or girl.
The plot is the same as any “Cinderella” reincarnation–a young and beautiful girl is forced to become the servant to her step mother and step sisters after her loving father passes away.
Cinderella also meets a dashing prince that she falls in love with. The overall theme of the movie, which isn’t hard to miss, is to have courage and to be kind.
Cinderella is played by Lily James, who is from the hit show “Downtown Abbey” and has also done “Wrath of The Titans.” Richard Madden replays his role as a monarch but this time he is Prince Charming, not King of the North.
Helena Bonham Carter is Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother and Cate Blanchett is the wicked stepmother, Lady Tremaine. Holliday Grainger and Sophie McShera are the funny and dimwitted stepsisters.
The scenes that really stand out and show the theme of the movie are when Cinderella first meets Charming in the forest, when she is tries to get away from her step-family, and the ending of the movie.
The movie was good to the point where it was almost great. Kenneth Branagh really does make this a fantasy film and Disney made the right choice in hiring him to make it. It has so many great elements in it, including costume, set design, and location.
Lily James as Cinderella does a great job. You felt her struggles to clean the house and keep her step-family happy. However, in the dress she had to wear for the ball, it looked like she could hardly breathe.
Richard Madden puts the charm in Prince Charming. He becomes the typical Disney prince stereotype that audiences have all come to know, but he actually does a great job.
Cate Blanchett brilliantly does the role of stepmother well, being cruel to Cinderella yet actually seems human at times. She also does a great job as the villain, that audiences love to hate her.
The two stepsisters, played by Holliday Grainger and Sophie McShera, bring the most comedic elements into the movie with their pure idiocy. Helena Bonham Carter may replay her roles but does this role well in showing how quirky the fairy godmother is.
Other than the cast, what really impresses are the elaborate costumes, which range from simple garments to magnificent ballroom dresses. Set designs are also unique and enjoyable to see, such as Cinderella’s home and the palace where the ball is held. The forest, gardens, and everything else are beautiful, too.
One thing we viewers have come to realize is the idea of taking classic animated Disney princess and turning them into live action spectacles. They already have decided to cast Emma Watson from “Harry Potter” to play Belle from “Beauty and The Beast.”
Is it possible that we will see more, such as “The Little Mermaid” or “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs?” Perhaps we will see other classic Disney animated films that will have live-action interpretations that aren’t princess movies like “Aladdin.” Only time will tell.
Overall, this movie in itself is great, the only thing that seems bad is that it feels a little corny.