This movie was released in the year that I was born. I can’t even count the number of times over the years that I have seen this movie. When I was younger and video players were the new technology I remember taping this off the television and wearing the tape out. I then bought a copy many years later and finally have invested in the DVD many years later.
This version of Cinderella is truly the one that I have always bought into, we get to see behind the palace walls and watch the pressure being applied to Prince Edward to find his royal bride, see the torture as ‘suitable’ girls are paraded in front of him – some with no hair and no teeth – all becuase they are royal. Alongside this we have Cinderella struggling to cope with the change in her fortunes from that of beloved daughter to nothing more than cook and cleaner for her stepmother and stepsisters.
Add in lots of great songs and dance routines, a very dashing Richard Chamberlaine as the Prince, a suitably innocent Gemma Craven as Cindrella and it makes for cinema magic. I especially love the way this film continues beyond the point of the glass slipper fitting and explores the dilema facing the royal family in allowing the prince to marry a non-royal bride and the subsequent exile of Cinderella in order to prevent the marriage. It’s great to understand how happily ever after can sometimes take a little longer than the fairy tale implied.
My daughter is just beginning to develop a love of films like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Water Babies, Annie and Willy Wonka, I cannot wait to sit down with her and allow my love of this movie to pass onto her.