Kenneth Branagh’s Cinderella proves why traditional is still sometimes the best, and the latest offering from Disney was everything you should expect from a fairytale; beautiful, charming and with a very big dress! I was disappointed when I heard that Disney were beginning to release live-action versions of their well-loved animations, but having now seen Cinderella, I was wrong to be disappointed.
Richard Madden might be best known as Robb Stark from Game of Thrones, but he played the role of Prince Charming to its full potential. The role had a bit more padding to it than in the original 1950’s animation, including an actual name, Kit, and more of a relationship with his father, which helped to develop the character and the plot. Lily James was charming as Cinderella, and really enforced the main message of the production, “have courage and be kind”. The pair together appeared sweet and innocent, and it was refreshing to see some sentimental romance in a world that appears to have been taken by storm by 50 Shades of Grey. Helena Bonham Carter deserves a mention as she provided just the right amount of sass and kookiness to the fairy godmother.
Whilst there is no denying that the film is sweet, it is not sickeningly so, with the evil stepmother, Cate Blanchett, and her two daughters providing just the right amount of shade to this otherwise light and airy film. Following Disney’s recent revisionist films Maleficent and Into the Woods, which attempted to unpick their roots, Cinderella closely follows the 1950’s animation and so little will come as a surprise to the audience, except perhaps the paintbrush wielding Rob Brydon who makes a small appearance.
The mice, pumpkin carriage and glass slippers were all present, and showed the combination of CGI and cinematography off to its best advantage. The film was beautifully shot, the costumes were spectacular, and I now eagerly await the release of Beauty and the Beast which is scheduled to be released in 2017. Cinderella has the feel-good factor and I smiled the whole way home. Rather than reading about the controversy surrounding the size of Lily James’ waist, go and watch the film, and I dare you not to be swept up in the magic and happy ending that we all wish for.