Directed by Andy Tennant
Based on the classic fairy tale Cinderella by Charles Perrault
Screenplay by Susannah Grant, Andy Tennant, Rick Parks
Starring: Drew Barrymore, Anjelica Huston, Dougray Scott, Megan Dodds, Melanie Lynskey
Danielle (Barrymore) is living in the shadow of her cruel stepmother (Huston) and step sisters (Dodds, Lynskey). When Prince Henry (Scott) comes across Danielle in a chance encounter, the two begin to connect. Now Danielle is hoping to free herself from her life of servitude, and protect those she serves with from the cruelty of her stepmother. As Prince Henry and Danielle begin to get to know one another, they both find ways to help one another. If she can overcome the efforts of her stepmother, Danielle might be able to start the life she’s longed for.
This film is one of many based on the classic tale of Cinderella which was originally published by French author Charles Perrault. Perrault is credited as the creator of the Mother Goose fairy tales. This adaptation was written by Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovich), Rick Parks (Down Hill), and Andy Tennant. Tennant (It Takes Two) also directed this 1998 film. The cast includes Drew Barrymore (Fever Pitch), Anjelica Huston (50/50), and Dougray Scott (My Week with Marilyn). The cast also features Megan Dodds (The Contract) and Melanie Lynskey (Up in the Air).
This is an interesting take on the classic story of Cinderella. The focus of the film allows the female characters to take the lead, as both heroes and villains. The story also allows the character of Danielle to rise above the typical damsel in distress, and become something deeper and more intelligent. The writing allows for a lot of fun moments in this one. It also creates a unique twist to the resolution of the story. Overall, an interesting, unique, and fun version of the story.
I don’t generally think of Drew Barrymore as princess material. This film was such a different view on the classic story that it worked perfectly. Her character is nicely written and she does a great job leading the way in this one. It might be fair to say that this was a part written for her particular style of acting and designed to fit within her range. The fantastic Anjelica Huston does a great job anchoring the other side of this story. Her performance is nicely crafted to bring out the worst in her character. She’s also complemented nicely by the work from Megan Dodds and Melanie Lynskey. These two women bring oddly comedic and cruel versions of the step sisters to life. Dougray Scott did a good job with his part in this one also. Overall, this is a nicely acted film that brings out good work from the stars and the supporting cast alike.
This film was nicely put together. The locations used for the filming all work to bring the world of the film to life. The costumes and set design add to the overall success of the movie. Otherwise, the movie doesn’t do anything unique from a technical aspect. It’s a good movie with good visuals and a good score as well. The one major issue with this one is the pace of the second half of the film. Despite laying a good foundation, the movie slows far too much, making it seem a bit longer than necessary.
This is a fun movie that the whole family might enjoy. The run time for this one is just over two hours, so be ready for a slower pace. I would suggest this to fans of romance or romantic comedies. I would also recommend this one to fans of the stars. In particular, Anjelica Huston’s performance is worth checking out if you haven’t seen this one. It’s a good movie, but not a great one. Still, it’s a good choice for a movie night at home. I give this one 3.8 out of 5 stars.