This fresh, new take on the classic story features an upbeat soundtrack and an alternative ending.
The iconic Billy Porter plays Fab G, Cinderella’s fabulously magical godparent. “It’s about time we see a modern-day representation of Cinderella,’’ Porter shared with Today. “I want to change the world and encourage people to believe that they can be whoever and whatever they want to be, as long as they stay true to themselves.”
The film follows Cinderella (also known as Ella), an aspiring fashion designer and her unexpected romance with Prince Robert, the reluctant heir to the throne. Award-winning singer Camila Cabello plays Cinderella — her first acting role and the first Latina to play the princess. Cabello shows off her vocal talents throughout the movie, from the original “Million to One” to covering Jennifer Lopez’s “Let’s Get Loud.”
Ella, a poor orphan who lives with her abusive, restrictive stepmother Vivian (Idina Menzel) and her mean, obnoxious and spoiled stepsisters (Maddie Baillio, Charlotte Spencer), loves to design dresses and even has her own workplace in her basement, where a crew of merry mice (James Corden, Romesh Ranganathan, James Acaster) watch over her.
It is her dream is to open up a dress shop in the town marketplace; however, in her kingdom, women cannot run businesses. When Prince Robert (Nicholas Galitzine) lays eyes on Ella, he falls head over heels in love with her, as does she for him. Cinderella and Prince Robert take a fresh look at their paths in life, which generates a new direction for the tale.
Cinderella maintains a steady and engaging pace with just enough action, comedy, romance and drama throughout. The cast is comprised of a mixture of singers, actors, and comedians. Cabello, Porter, and Menzel slay us with their refreshing take on several well-known songs. Pierce Brosnan plays the stately, confident, yet flawed and patriarchal King Rowan, and Minnie Driver acts as his strong, regal Queen Beatrice.
Writer/director Kay Cannon re-envisioned Cinderella as a modern musical with a heroine who wants more than just to find a prince to marry. This film breaks the mold of past versions by portraying the female leads as strong, talented women. Beatrice, Ella, and Vivian have one thing in common — they are restricted by their society. Vivian had to give up on her dreams of becoming a renowned pianist; Beatrice must sit silently next to her husband for life; and Ella is at risk of losing her dreams.
From the opening scene featuring a mash-up of Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation” and “You Gotta Be” by Des’ree, Cinderella takes us on an enjoyable adventure full of good music, energetic choreography, and superb acting and costumes. This must be the first time a fairy tale has pushed against restrictive gender roles while teaching us to follow our dreams, choose our own destiny, and so many more positive messages. This is a modern and inclusive Cinderella our children can look up to.
Watch the trailer