Today’s movie, Three Wishes for Cinderella, is interesting. By interesting, I mean watching it, I couldn’t find it nor get a DVD of it with English subtitles so I had to watch it without subtitles and then I watched it again with this British guy narrating it, which was weird but I least I understood the story better.
Three Wishes for Cinderella, or as it’s sometimes called, “Three Nuts for Cinderella” and I’m immature enough to giggle when I see that, is a 1973 Czechoslovak/East German movie starring Libuše Šafránková. So did I mind watching this movie twice as most movies I struggle to even make it twenty minutes before suppressing the urge to kill myself? Nope, this movie was charming.
It’s your basic Cinderella story. Cinderella has a step-mother and step sister who hate her while every else loves her. Though this movie is quite different from other versions. Cinderella is forbidden to ride her pretty white horse and Step mother makes her keep busy by mixing peas and lentils together and makes Cinderella sort them, which is a tasks that her dove friends do for her.
One day, when the King, Queen and the Prince are heading to a castle in the vicinity, Cinderella sneaks out and visit her pet owl and meets the prince. Well she throws a snowball at him and gives him the run around and then steals his horse. The Prince is impress that someone other than him could ride his horse.
The step-Mother weasels an invite to the ball. The send the stewart to get fabric. He offers to get Cinderella gift. Cinderella wants to go to the ball but dejected that they step-mother would never let her go she asks her to bring back what ever hits his nose. On his way back the prince hit the stewart’s with a bird nest and he find three hazelnuts which he gives to Cinderella.
Cinderella takes the hazelnuts to her owl and tell him that she wishes she could fly ways but to even leave she would need a disguise. The owl motion for her to open the hazel and out pops a huntsmen costume. She then runs into the prince who is having a contest where the first one to shot down a bird of prey wins a ring, Cinderella wins the contest and once again impresses the prince. She then runs off and the prince chases after her. She take off her disguise and give him the run around again.
As the Step-mother and sister get ready for the ball, Cinderella ask if she could just look in through the window, which her step-mother respond by making sort the peas and the lentils again. However she once agin gets help from the doves. She them goes to her owl. For her second wish she wishes for a pink ball gown that looks like the dawn. She goes to the ball and wins the love of the prince who wants to marry but before she agrees she gives the prince a riddle, which is something like, “ Dirty face but now a chimney sweep, A Feather hat but not a huntsmen, a ball gown but not a princess.” Which is her but until he can answers it she won’t be his wife and he runs out the ball to her horse and leaves her shoe. Oh and in this version she wears a veil so no can recognize her which means the Prince follows for her grace and charms over her face.
The Prince follows her to the manor but can’t find her. I think her Step-mother does something to her when she figures it out but I’m not sure what. Cinderella escapes though, I guess and goes to her owl and the last wish is a wedding gown. Cinderella reveals herself to the prince and they ride off to the castle on their horses.
What is interesting about this movie is that for a lot of European specifically in Germany and Norway, though there could be more countries, this is THE movie to watch on Christmas Eve because it has a nice winter setting, which is both refreshing and has a nice romantic feel.
What I really like about this move version is Cinderella herself. So often Cinderella is accused of being too passive and marrying a guy she doesn’t know. This Cinderella hunts, rides, is kind, mischievous and smart. And much like another Cinderella who fits these traits, that we’ll get to someday (
Cough Ever After Cough), she also meets the Prince by throwing something at him. Also Libuše Šafránková just looks like a great Cinderella as she is quite beautiful but in a charming natural way. She was just perfect.
Also with the her wearing a veil and the Prince meeting her a few times their love is a bit more believable, though it didn’t seem she was really interested him and she did let him off the riddle hook quickly, but it’s more than original story.
The changes they made to the story were great as the owl and hazelnuts act as the fairy godmother and there is no coach just her horse. There was just enough magic without any real frills. It was just good emotions
I will say there are some weird cinematic choices. I think it might be more the the style of 70’s cinema than artistic expression but there are some weird closeup that are off-putting but the last shot is stunning as they ride off into the distance against pure white snow, it was rather magical.
Being costume freak I am I have to discuss Cinderella’s Ball gown, First off, I really like the motif of the gown. She looked like a sunrise with a soft pink and blueish tones. Many Cinderella are either in blues and white that pink is a nice color choice. Also I love, love the fire bird on the back of the train and on the sash.
However I din’t really like that this gown was style of the times and didn’t really fit into the rest of the costumes. It was the point of the costume but they didn’t even try to make it the mingle the style of the 70’s with the time period of the movie. Though Šafránková looked lovely and it was a fun scene, so I forgive it a little bit.
Three Wishes for Cinderella is a very refreshing take on Cinderella plus an Owl and Horse play a critical role so clear it’s a great movie.
I will say the ONE thing I didn’t like was all the hunting but that is me being sensitive, also that music they played all the time got a little old.Follow thehunchblog