Since last year, Disney has been extensively promoting its Cinderella movie up for release this weekend. The wait is almost over, and as the opening day draws near, more people get thrilled if not wary about the live-action Disney princess film. Disney has had several successes with live-action fairytale films namely Maleficent, 101 Dalmatians and Alice in Wonderland.
However, no other Disney fairytale creation could ever compete with the story of the little ash girl who later became royalty. After all, that iconic castle in the 1950s version has been the focal point of every Disney theme park and flashed at the opening of modern Disney films. Cinderella, therefore, is a treasure film that immortalizes happy-ever-after endings and realizes young women’s romantic fantasies.
Although not very far from the original animated film, Kenneth Branagh, the movie director, said the live-action version combines modern gender politics with an enchanted setting. This is perhaps the director’s way of saying there is more to the film than what many already know. He may be right because for one, the legendary castle in the live-action film is interestingly different from its animated precursor.
Still some critics say the two films, live or animated, have one thing in common: the absurdly small waistline of Cinderella, as showcased in most Disney princess films. Not many fans are happy with the Lily James’ allegedly photoshopped hourglass figure, adding that she might have also starved herself in order to look the part.
Branagh and James, along with some of the cast and designer Sandy Powell, readily defended the film explaining that James merely wore a corsage to get the desired body shape. James said that the large, voluminous skirt and the body-hugging underwear made it possible to attain the illusionary look.
Some critics, however, do not buy the explanation. They claimed that Cinderella’s tiny waist has negatively affected their self-confidence and the way they perceived themselves.
Award-winning journalist Victoria Lambert even wrote a piece saying she would not let her 10-year old daughter watch the upcoming film regardless of how magical it looks, or how great the script is. Her reason: the film is promoting fantasy, something that’s really out of the ordinary. She added that Branagh’s Cinderella tells women that having a tiny waist makes them most attractive.