Review: The New Cinderella is Great for Any Age


Charlotte Houston, Staff Writer

“Have courage and be kind,” is the moral in this retelling of the classic Cinderella story. Released on March 13, 2015, it grossed $397 million worldwide. Its faithfulness to the original plot, beautiful scenery and costume design, and good message made it a hit for children and adults alike.

While sometimes the plot of Cinderella can get old, especially if you are like me and watched the modern Selena Gomez version of it at least 10 times as a child, this retelling was just unique enough to be interesting without making it a new story.

It drew some of the older crowd as well, starring Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, and Downton Abbey actresses Sophie McShera and Lily James. It was shot at several real castles, including Blenheim Palace and Windsor Castle among others. As a result, the scenery was gorgeous and as fantastical as anyone could have hoped for in their wildest dreams of being a princess.

The characters of the step-sisters and mother were as frustratingly nasty as usual, and by the end you are almost on the edge of your seat, even though the ending is obviously set in stone.

The most unique part of this retelling, however, is the takeaway. It has a good message that’s not so cheesily inspiring that you want to barf up your popcorn, and it’s accessible to young girls as well. While some people may argue that Cinderella is not a good role model – that she’s passive, and just gets her happy ending without any work on her part – that is definitely not the case. She puts up with constant belittling and lives in fear of being cast out of her family’s house, which she promised to her dying mother that she would maintain.

And the whole time, she sticks to her mantra – “have courage and be kind” – ending the cycle of abuse and bullying. After years of loneliness and unrewarded hard work, she’s acknowledged for her good nature and gets her happy ending. It’s not just a story of a girl sitting around and getting swept off her feet; it’s about a girl who is strong and brave in the face of hardship, expecting nothing in return, and then getting her prince.

Overall, Cinderella is a must-see for any age group.