Cinderella is one of those classic fairy tales that has been remade time and time again. It’s one of my favourite stories that I never get tired of reading or watching about, no matter what version it is.
So, we all know the original 1950 one from Disney.
While that Cinderella will always remain a classic, it wasn’t the first adaptation of the story that I saw. Due to that, there were notable things in it that I did not particularly like. One of them was the fact that it seemed to have way more plot involving the mice, rather than Cinderella herself. Then there was the lack of interaction between her and Prince Charming when they first met at the ball. But, despite those flaws, it’s still great to watch.
So, aside from the original, here are some of my other favourite adaptations:
Roger and Hammerstein’s Cinderella (1997)
This is honestly such a beautiful version of the story. It’s a catchy and romantic musical with a diverse cast, not to mention we got the legendary Whitney Houston! She makes a fantastic fairy godmother with a lot of charm. She’s definitely the star of the movie, but there are moments where Brandy, who plays Cinderella, manages to step into the spotlight without taking it from Whitney completely.
She looked stunning at the ball, I really like how her hair was done in that bun but with a few curls hanging free. She also sings her own song and does one with Whitney as well and those are my favourite songs from this film. The prince is also super sweet, he and Cinderella meet before the ball and get to know each other. They even manage to share a kiss just seconds before midnight. This is definitely the best musical I’ve seen of the story.
Ever After (1998)
This story is a more historically accurate plus realistic version of the Cinderella story. Instead, our protagonist is named Danielle and I love how headstrong she is. The original Cinderella character was always considered passive and obedient in an effort to remain kind always, even to those who abuse her.
Did Danielle lie about her identity to Prince Henry since she was attracted to him but didn’t think he would accept her for who she was, or she didn’t want him to remember her as the woman who hit him with apples at the beginning? No matter, the scene where Rodmilla exposes her at the masquerade ball and she flees in tears leaving behind one of her glass slippers always makes me cry too.
Anjelica Huston did an amazing job as Rodmilla, pure evil and I like how only one of the stepsisters was a mean bitch instead of both. Marguerite I hated and cheered when Danielle punched her after she insulted Danielle’s late mother. Jacqueline, I’m glad they made her the kinder stepsister, it’s a much different approach for a change and I like how in the end she gets to live in the palace with her and she falls for the captain of the guard. That was so cute how they met wearing almost the same costume at the ball helping themselves to the feast!
Ella Enchanted (2004)
I don’t know if this movie classifies as a Cinderella adaptation, but to me it definitely does. I really wish I read the book. It was given to me years ago, but for some reason, I didn’t touch it. Then I went to see the movie on my birthday with some friends I had back in elementary school.
It’s got the stepmother and stepsisters, a handsome prince, and a grand ball. Of course, one thing you notice is that Ella isn’t enslaved by her new family and her father never dies, he just goes away on business elsewhere in the land. I can’t believe he was oblivious to the treatment Ella received, especially from Hattie in his absence.
Poor Ella has a curse that causes her to obey every command she’s given, even if it’s morally wrong and eventually that is used against her by her stepsisters and then those of higher cruelty like Edgar so he can seize the throne.
This movie also has some comedy in it, like who doesn’t love it when Ella sings Queen’s Somebody to Love? That is my favourite Queen song and I think it needs more love from the fans and the mainstream.
Based on the original film, this one takes it to the next level, and the truth it is, I like it better. Why? It provides more of a backstory of Cinderella’s family and how she was eventually forced into servitude after the death of her father. It shows her name was not Cinderella from the beginning, but instead was a name given to her just for simply choosing to sleep by the fire when she was too tired to go back up to the attic.
She still has her mice and other animal friends, but they are in their place and don’t take up too much of the plot and screen time. I know what you’re thinking, the original is supposed to be like that because it shows Cinderella’s love for animals, but I was interested in Cinderella herself instead.
Any Game of Thrones fans can recognize the prince is actually Robb Stark. There is no such thing as a happy ending in GOT so I moved to Disney! Well that’s something we can agree on after I saw the disappointing series finale. Lady Tremaine is just as wicked and some other great parts of this movie are the scenes at the ball and escaping afterwards.
It takes the beloved classic to the next level and I think her dress is prettier in this one.
What are your favourite Cinderella stories?