Blu-ray: Highly Recommended
4 Stars out of 5
Release Date: September 3rd, 2021
Movie Release Year: 2021
MPAA Rating: Parental Guidance Suggested
Release Country: United States
COLLAPSE INFO -

Cinderella (2021) - Theatrical Review

Review Date September 3rd, 2021 by
Overview -

It seems like there have been countless Cinderella films or iterations of the Disney classic over the decades. However, this new 2021 version brings a fantastic modern musical recipe to the mix in telling this tale as old as time. With some amazing performances led by Camila Cabello and directed by rock-star filmmaker Kay Cannon, Cinderella is in the spotlight once again as the film tackles and delivers some amazing messages on feminism, girl-power, and the class system. Plus, the music and dance choreography of the film will have everyone singing and dancing for days after. Cinderella in 2021 is dynamite.

Coming to Amazon Prime on September 3rd - WATCH ON AMAZON PRIME.

OVERALL
Highly Recommended

Story Review Storyline: Our Reviewer's Take

4 Stars out of 5

From Disney's Cinderella in 1950, all the way to Kenneth Branaugh's version of the glass-slippered princess in 2015, with a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical version added in for good measure and everything in between - there hasn't been a truly fun version of the film that has taken on some great social issues quite like Cannon's version. It's usually a woe-is-me tale of an unlucky poor woman who is treated terribly and is basically saved by a handsome, wealthy prince by the end of the story. That's not the case at all with this Cinderella film and plays out at quite the opposite in a twist of events. These elements along with the groovy music selection make this one of the best Disney remakes yet. And that statement comes from someone who has vehemently disliked every single Disney live-action remake until Cruella made her punk-rock debut in early 2021.

The story is the same enough that centers on Cinderella (Cabello), who lives with her wicked stepmother Vivian (Idina Menzel) and her two daughters. Cinderella dreams of something bigger in the world as she is relegated and forced to stay down in a dingy basement, where she crafts amazing dresses and outfits and cares for the rodents and bugs that live with her below. This Cinderella is not shy or timid though. She speaks her mind, is extremely witty and funny, and has a great attitude of just about everything, even though nobody seems to enjoy her company.

Across town, Prince Robert is constantly scolded by his father King Rowan (Pierce Brosnan) for not marrying a bride of his choosing while Queen Beatrice (Minnie Driver) tries to have a voice in the kingdom and helps her son find his happiness. With a little help from her friends, a fairy godparent (Billy Porter) sparkles onto the scene, makes everything bigger and brighter for Cinderella in order for her to attend the royal ball for a chance at the Prince's hand in marriage.

What's great about this story though is how Prince Robert and Cinderella meet before this ball and how she impresses him with her wit and honesty, having already established a powerful relationship before the big dance. This goes hand in hand with the modern social and political issues of women empowerment and woman-owned businesses as Cinderella pursues her own storefront to sell her own clothing line. Not only that, this issue is a topic of discussion amongst the King and Queen, whose marriage is in hot water due to King Rowan's inability to focus on anything other than work and a certain sea monster.

Cannon was the writer and producer of the Pitch Perfect franchise and on the hit TV show 30 Rock and made her directorial debut with the hilarious film Blockers. Her style of comedy and attention for some witty delivery and timing is used perfectly in this Cinderella film with some breaking the fourth wall moments along with a self-awareness amongst the characters who will even state they just broke into song and dance to iterate point. It's laugh-out-loud funny in these sequences that mix well with the more dramatic parts.

The main cast is having a ball on screen with this funnier version of the story with Menzel showcasing her mean side as the evil stepmother with her intense glares and vicious delivery of dialogue, That being said, there's a sympathetic side to her that comes out which causes some love for the character finally after all these years. And Cabello just owns the screen every time she's at front and center. Even though she's a star singer by trade, her acting chops and eye for comedy are excellent from start to finish. And of course, Billy Porter steals the show and is definitely the best Fairy Godparent ever. 

From the start of the film, it's immediately known how great the music will be going forward, which is ripe with hit rock and pop tunes as the town break into Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation. This amazing rendition of the song is joined by the song cues of Queen, Madonna, Earth Wind and Fire, Jennifer Lopez, and more. These are mixed in with some original songs to boot, all of which are performed wonderfully. Cannon employed veteran cinematographer Andrew Dunn (L.A. Story, The Bodyguard, The Perks Of Being A Wallflower) to shoot this beautiful film with mixes a wide range of bold colors against an old-timey fairy tale backdrop. 

 

Video Review

N/A Stars out of 5

Audio Review

N/A Stars out of 5

Special Features

N/A Stars out of 5

Final Thoughts

The film runs for about two hours and finds itself somehow leaving certain characters in the lurch with nowhere to go, mainly the stepsisters who are begging to have their own spinoff show of hijinx, along with a few other characters who only get a little bit of screen time, but no reward by the end. And then, of course, there is James Corden - the most annoying person to come out of Hollywood. Luckily he isn't on screen very much, but when he is, the film is almost unwatchable. But that one element doesn't take away from the fun and entertaining chorus that is this modern Cinderella. If more live-action Disney remakes were like this - the world would be a better place. Cinderella (2021) is an energetic and rock-music-filled blast. 

Coming to Amazon Prime on September 3rd - WATCH ON AMAZON PRIME.

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