As Disney goes through the motions of updating many of their classic animated films to live action, CGI-infused adventures, we can expect some to be good (Maleficent) and some to be questionable (Alice in Wonderland). It’s anyone’s guess which category Kenneth Branagh’s new version of Cinderella will fall into, but at least it looks suitably bright and shiny with more emphasis on practical mis-en-scene than the usual CGI.
The latest trailer for Cinderella landed on New Year’s Eve, making the most of a plot that revolves around the stroke of midnight. Here we see the beauty of Branagh’s palette, with bright and lavish sets, gorgeous costumes and some convincing CGI geese. Cate Blanchett is on hand to lend some evil gravitas to the proceedings, while Helena Bonham Carter appears to be having a wonderful time as the fairy godmother who helps Cinderella (Lily James) go the ball. But the real star of this trailer here is the mis-en-scene; say what you like about Branagh as a filmmaker, he does know how to create a lavish world.
Cinderella has an impressive cast (in addition to the leads) that includes Richard Madden, Hayley Atwell, Stellan Skarsgard and Holiday Grainger. The story does not appear to have been changed around much either; I don’t think we’ll be reinventing the evil stepmother as a misunderstood matriarch just trying to take care of her kids, as interesting as that might be. But that’s all right, sometimes the best Disney fairytales are the original Disney fairytales.
Check out the newest trailer for Cinderella and see if you’ll be there for the stroke of midnight. You can also take a look at the poster and full official plot synopsis below, though I suspect you already know the story thus far.
Cinderella will open in 2D and 3D on March 13, 2015.
The story of “Cinderella” follows the fortunes of young Ella whose merchant father remarries following the tragic death of her mother. Keen to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new stepmother Lady Tremaine and her daughters Anastasia and Drisella into the family home. But, when Ella’s father suddenly and unexpectedly passes away, she finds herself at the mercy of a jealous and cruel new family. Finally relegated to nothing more than a servant girl covered in ashes, and spitefully renamed Cinderella, Ella could easily begin to lose hope.
Yet, despite the cruelty inflicted upon her, Ella is determined to honor her mother’s dying words and to “have courage and be kind.” She will not give in to despair nor despise those who abuse her. And then there is the dashing stranger she meets in the woods. Unaware that he is really a prince, not merely an employee at the Palace, Ella finally feels she has met a kindred soul. It appears as if her fortunes may be about to change when the Palace sends out an open invitation for all maidens to attend a ball, raising Ella’s hopes of once again encountering the charming “Kit.” Alas, her stepmother forbids her to attend and callously rips apart her dress. But, as in all good fairy tales, help is at hand as a kindly beggar woman steps forward and, armed with a pumpkin and a few mice, changes Cinderella’s life forever.