Cinderella: Review / by Kenneth Buff

Cinderella is both what you would probably expect from yet another adaptation of the Disney fairy-tale property and what you wouldn't. The film definitely sticks to the story beats and conventions we all know (the wicked step-mother and step-sisters, the handsome prince, the fairy godmother), but it also manages to come off as almost-fresh in some moments. These scenes are mostly ones that surprisingly involve prince charming, played here by Game of Thrones star Richard Maddening. His character manages to (for the most part) come off as a real person, who has real desires. The scenes between him and his father are especially good. There's also a rather clever origin for Cinderella's name in the film, that just adds a little layer of character and convinces us to route for this girl who we've already seen suffer so many times before.

The visuals are of course beautiful. Though it does feature some CGI mice and pumpkin and transformation sequences, these are not the things worth seeing—they're not only the things we've seen before, they're the things we see often—the beauty is in the costume design and the sets, both of which are gorgeous and compliment the (mostly) believable performances.

Overall Cinderella is a fun-enough distraction to warrant a visit to the theater, if you're dying to see a movie; or if you're just curious about how this adaption has turned out. For everyone else, you'd be better off waiting a month or so until the summer Disney tent-pole movies start popping up. (Avengers 2, anybody?)