By Minuet Bando, Sept. 14, 2021

Amazon Prime’s 2021 “Cinderella” presented upbeat covers of classic songs, captivating dance numbers and a modernized message for women empowerment but missed the essence of what made “Cinderella” a classic fairy tale.

This new interpretation of the film displayed the struggles Cinderella, played by Camilla Cabello, undergoes while living in a male-dominant society that forbids women from becoming business owners. Although the overall plot was supposed to signify women empowerment, the film neglected the essence of the beloved original tale that embodied fantasy and romance.

The film comes across as another uninspiring cheesy project that needs more work spent on the plot rather than the costume and set designs.Both the original 1950 “Cinderella” and 2015 “Cinderella” depict the heart of the fairy tale which the 2021 version lacks. They demonstrate magic and good fortune for those who are kind to all, even those who have deceived them. However, the 2021 “Cinderella” storyline concentrates on a self-made business owner which modernized the film but departed further from the fairy-like hope Cinderella stories exhibit.

Unfortunately, this film overlooked the importance in including diversified characters, once again creating a story centered around predominantly white actors with ethnic minorities used as props rather than people. The character known as the fabulous godmother, played byBilly Porter, was made to assist Cinderella to the grand ball and nothing beyond that. In the previous “Cinderella” adaptations, the fairy godmother was a more critical character who served as a symbol of hope.

Despite the many faults in the plot, the film’s theatric dance numbers and phenomenal singers made the audience members want to join in. Tony Award-winning Idina Menzel played the evil stepmother named Vivian. Menzel’s performance was mind-blowing. Her vocal arrangements were out of this world. The film covers classic, energetic songs like Material Girl by Madonna and Somebody to Love by Queen that impressively add spirit to the film.

Although the film had striking vocal performances and eye-catching choreographed numbers, Cabello’s acting fell short of expectations.The 2021 “Cinderella” portrays a joyous independent woman who craves freedom and control of her own life, but as she lives in the basement and is treated like a servant, she is strangely content. The audience can not shed tears for Cinderella if she does not appear miserable.

Studios will continue to remake movies in an attempt to change aspects of the film to make it more contemporary and unique to this generation’s audience. Granted that Cinderella is famously known for the iconic blue ballroom dress worn at the Grand Ball, the 2021 “Cinderella” designer, Ellen Mirojnick, decided to make an executive decision and changed the dress color to pastel pink. This choice took away the “Cinderella” effect and made the dress appear as a conventional wedding dress.

With the countless faults in the film, and questionable character aspirations, the “Cinderella” film failed to fulfill the fairy-tale experience required when remaking any Disney movie like the iconic “Cinderella”.

For movie fanatics who desire to experience the unimagined fairy-like tale, I suggest the Oscar-nominated 1950 “Cinderella” or the Academy Award-winning 2015 “Cinderella.”

The 2021 “Cinderella” is available to stream on Amazon Prime with an active subscription.

Graphic courtesy of Minuet Bando.

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