Tag Archives: Ella Enchanted

PROJECT FAIRY TALE: Cinderella Movies

Hosted by Alison at The Cheap Reader

CINDERELLA – MOVIE VERSIONS

If we’re just being honest…. One of the reasons I wanted to pick Cinderella as my fairy tale for PFT was because of all of the great movie versions. I LOVE the Cinderella movies. I’m not even going to go into the original Disney one because we all know it and you don’t need any explanation from me. We’re counting down my favorite Cinderella remakes – movie style!!

1965: ROGER’S & HAMMERSTEIN’S CINDERELLA
Starring Lesley Ann Warren and Stuart Damon

Yes, I know the original verson of R&H Cinderella was with Julie Andrews, but for whatever reason, the 1965 version is what I grew up with (probably because it was the one my mom grew up with… She would have been about seven years old when this came out, so that’s about right). When I was a kid, I immediately fell in love with the musical version of Cinderella, and although Lesley Ann Warren may not have the best voice in the world, it was the version that I held dear to my heart. (And the prince is a little dreamy. And I hate the Brandy version.)

1985: FAERIE TALE THEATRE PRESENTS: CINDERELLA
Starring Jennifer Beals and Matthew Broderick

Yes, you heard right! This version of Cinderella stars Jennifer Beals as Cinderella and Matthew Broderick as the prince. It’s so incredibly funny watching this version as an adult and seeing so many people I never knew were big stars as a kid. This was a great version of Cinderella to watch as a kid because there were so many silly moments to appreciate. The step-sisters were made to come off incredibly unintelligent so one of our favorites lines in our household was from one of the step-sisters: “Would you like something to drink? Perhaps some ham?” (And the prince is a little dreamy.)

1998: EVER AFTER
Starrting Drew Barrymore

I rarely like Drew Barrymore, but this is one role I feel like she excelled in. I loved the whole feel of the movie and how it was genuine to the original fairy tale, but at the same time, the characters are made to feel so much like they were real people. It really felt like historical fiction so much more than a redone fairy tale. (And the prince is a little dreamy.)

2004: A CINDERELLA STORY
Starring Hilary Duff and Chad Michael Murray

Yes, I admit it. I love A Cinderella Story. I was just the right age when Lizzie McGuire came out so I became a bit of a Hilary Duff fan as a young teenager, and then it came to the point where maybe I was a little too old to be liking Lizzie McGuire and Hilary Duff… but I still did. I secretly loved this modern take on Cinderella. It was just so much fun, although thoroughly silly. I really liked the modern take on the classic fairy tale because I hadn’t really seen on before! (And the prince is a little dreamy.)

2004: ELLA ENCHANTED
Starring Anne Hathaway and Hugh Dancy

I honestly can’t remember when I saw this version, but I really barely remember it. Definitely faded from my mind enough so that I didn’t even know what was going to happen in the book when I read it this past month. Just thinking about it makes me want to watch the movie again – Plus, from what I’ve heard, the movie version is pretty diffrent from the actual book. Now that I know the book, I want to see the movie. (Plus, the prince is a little dreamy.)

So there you have it! My favorite Cinderella movies!!! I really think the movies helped encourage my love for this fairy tale….. And apparently the selections for the prince. They’re all a bit cute, no?

PROJECT FAIRY TALE: Ella Enchanted – Gail Carson Levine

Hosted by Alison at The Cheap Reader

ELLA ENCHANTED by GAIL CARSON LEVINE

For my first Cinderella retelling, I chose ELLA ENCHANTED. I was going to pick up the book, but then I found the audiobook at my library and thought that would be even better! It was definitely a really quick listen at 5 discs (I think it ran close to 6 hours?) and the narrator did a great job, although I’m not sure the voice was quite accurate… I was kind of confused whether the book (based on content and the narrator’s voice) should have been more MG or more YA. Ella is 15 in the book and we deal with topics like relationsihps and marriage, but at the same time, it has more of a middle grade feel. Maybe it falls somewhere in between the two and either age range will work. ANYWAY…

THE STORY

At birth, Ella is inadvertently cursed by an imprudent young fairy named Lucinda, who bestows on her the “gift” of obedience. Anything anyone tells her to do, Ella must obey. Another girl might have been cowed by this affliction, but not feisty Ella: “Instead of making me docile, Lucinda’s curse made a rebel of me. Or perhaps I was that way naturally.” When her beloved mother dies, leaving her in the care of a mostly absent and avaricious father, and later, a loathsome stepmother and two treacherous stepsisters, Ella’s life and well-being seem to be in grave peril. But her intelligence and saucy nature keep her in good stead as she sets out on a quest for freedom and self-discovery as she tries to track down Lucinda to undo the curse, fending off ogres, befriending elves, and falling in love with a prince along the way. Yes, there is a pumpkin coach, a glass slipper, and a happily ever after, but this is the most remarkable, delightful, and profound version of Cinderella you’ll ever read. (From Goodreads.com)

HOW WAS IT AS A RETELLING?

I thought this was a fantastic retelling! The best part of ELLA ENCHANTED for me was how different it was and involved an original story. We don’t even see the Cinderella parallels (besides the stepmother/stepsisers) until closer to the end of the book. The first half focuses more on Ella and her curse as well as her evolving friendship with Prince Char. Ella goes on an epic quest to find a way to lift or reverse her curse, so as we get to know Ella, the focus is more on her story and creating a unique character instead of us picturing her as Cinderella.

At first I was a little worried that it wasn’t really a Cinderella retelling since it actually took so long for the book to get to things like balls and carriages, but eventually we did get there and it was so nicely done. The retelling aspect was neatly woven into Ella’s story, and as I’ve found from other retellings I’ve started, I think it’s important to have an original story to start as a foundation. Without it, I find myself drifting and getting bored really quickly. The retellings that I’ve been interested in have followed the original fairy tale of Cinderella, but definitely have their own unique aspects to draw the reader in.