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Cinderella and Fatherhood

I had low expectations for Disney’s “Cinderella”. There was no urgency for me to see this movie. After all, it was just a live action retelling of a well known and some would say woefully anachronistic princess story. Yet there I was, seated beside my 6 year old daughter, inexplicably engaged in the story on an emotional level. The strong bond between Cinderella and her father drew me in sparking contemplation about my little girl’s future happiness. If the world around her comes crashing down, the likelihood of a magic savior seems remote at best. It will ultimately be her own strength that determines her fate. Indeed, she will need to “have courage and be kind.”

How’s the Story?
Director Kenneth Branagh’s “Cinderella” is a visually exquisite movie capturing the whimsical essence of a charming fairy tale. Filled with breathtaking scenery, lush environments, precious moments, and a beautiful cast, Cinderella possesses all the components needed to captivate audiences of all ages. Some may lament the lack of depth in the re-imagining of this classic fairy tale, yet the story has always been a surface level narrative with well defined heroes and villains. Still, the stellar cast elevates their characters to a level evoking an emotional response from audiences. Nonso Anozie who plays the Captain and a trusted confidant to the Prince(Richard Madden), stands out with his portrayal of unwavering loyalty and justice. As mentioned previously, “Cinderella” has the potential to be an unexpected catalyst for introspection among fathers with young daughters. Thematically, the idea of courage and kindness firmly roots itself throughout the movie.

How are the Special Effects?
Filmmakers who rely too heavily on special effects will often produce movies that seem more like a video game than an engaging story. A balance needs to be found to seamlessly integrate the narrative with visual technical wizardry. “Cinderella” achieves that balance with the special effects adding to the storyline rather than overtaking it. Cinematically, Cinderella’s inherently optimistic nature pops off the screen as each bright, lovingly designed scene unfolds. The Disney magic remains intact albeit in a more subtle fashion.

The movie has a PG Rating. What’s the appropriate age for a kid to see it?
I don’t believe it’s a spoiler to divulge there are deaths occurring in the movie. The subject matter is handled with grace and for the most part happens off screen. Physical violence is at a bare minimum. The emotional trauma though is more pronounced. For that reason, I’d recommend the movie for children ages 6 and up. Parents should use their own discretion of course.

Any moments for Bathroom Breaks during the movie?
Given that the story is so well known, I’d recommend you take your pick based on what you deem okay to miss.

Overall Rating: B+

Pros: Cinematically beautiful. Well acted. Great bonding movie for Dads with young daughters.

Cons: No surprises which may or may not be a bad thing.

Official Trailer for “Cinderella”

What’s your take on the latest “Cinderella” movie?