Cinderella (2015) - The Walt Disney Company was on the verge of bankruptcy when they released the animated classic Cinderella in 1950. There have been countless retellings of the fairy tale "Cendrillon" by Charles Perrault, but none will ever reach the success of the 1950 version. Many people say that such a classic movie should be left alone, but I disagree. While the 1950 version will always be a classic, our world has changed quite a bit in the past 64 years. This version stays true to the original classic tale but is told in a fresh perspective with a much stronger message of "have courage and be kind”. The film stars Richard Madden as Kit, the Prince, Lily James (of Downton Abbey fame) as Ella, aka Cinderella, and Cate Blanchett as the wicked Stepmother. The visuals in this movie are full of color and just stunning. Sets were actually built rather than computer generated, and it shows. Cate brings out the character of the wicked Stepmother in sort of a Cruella de Vil fashion. She is perfect for this role and comes across as a character that seems very real, and although she is cruel, you also see another side of her as well - it is clear that Cinderella's father never stopped loving her mother, and Ella means the world to him. The wicked Stepmother and her daughters, Drisella and Anastasia, were never truly accepted as part of the family. Kit, the prince, is not only handsome but also a nice guy. His chance encounter with Ella in the woods gives them both an opportunity to meet and get to know each other before finding out their different positions in society. The film brings out the characters in a more real and identifiable way than an animated film could. You see them as multidimensional, and there are several moments where you laugh and others where you cry.
"Overall this film is exceptionally well made and I believe if Walt could come back he would be proud of it."
Bill Butler - Movie Bears, Phoenix