This is a list of the Best Live-Action Fairy Tale movies that were reviewed. In a lot of ways this list was harder than the worst list since I had the opposite problem there were a dearth of stellar movies but somehow it hit that target.

 

Number #10 

Gemma Craven as Cinderella and Richard Chamberlain as Prince Edward The Slipper and the Rose Cinderella picture image

Gemma Craven as Cinderella and Richard Chamberlain as Prince Edward

The Slipper and the Rose – Originally this was the movie for the surprised/liked list but it broke off from that for  a few reasons. The biggest reason is this the only Cinderella movie that have the godmother doing more stuff for Cinderella and gives a reason for why the magic has a limit. It also just addresses some other issue with the story and while characters aren’t amazing they are likable and there is more than just the Cinderella story being told. Plus the songs and the costumes are awesome.

 

Number #9

Jen with the Skeksis Chamberlain The Dark Crystal picture image

Jen with the Skeksis Chamberlain

The Dark Crystal – There really isn’t anything quite like The Dark Crystal. It has a lot of artistry,  imagination, and heart. The story is dark yet complex and still fairly accessible.

Number #8 

Libuše Šafránková as Cinderella with Pavel Trávníček as the Prince at the ball Three Wishes for Cinderella picture image

Libuše Šafránková as Cinderella with Pavel Trávníček as the Prince at the ball

Three Wishes for Cinderella – In a lot of ways this movie is another breath of fresh air for the Cinderella story. While  there is magic there is no fairy godmother but instead an owl and hazelnuts. Cinderella in this version is very able; she rides, hunts and is clever while still being kind. I do like that she veils her face so no one can recognizes her, even the prince. Plus the snow landscapes are lovely.

 

Number #7 

Ron Perlman as One and Judith Vittet as Miette The City of Lost Children picture image

Ron Perlman as One and Judith Vittet as Miette

City of Lost Children – You don’t get much more surreal than this one. The weird imaginary just adds so much to this story that it makes it more of a fairy tale.

Number #6

Ivana Baquero as Ofelia with Faun Pan’s Labyrinth picture image

Ivana Baquero as Ofelia with Faun

Pan’s Labyrinth – This movie is intoxicating. It combines a beautiful dark fairy tale with the horrors of reality within the context of Fascist Spain. I do wish that it wasn’t so balanced between the two settings as the fairy tale elements were better but that could be just wanting more of it.

 

Number #5

Noah Hathaway as Atreyu and Falkor The Neverending Story picture image

Noah Hathaway as Atreyu and Falkor

The Never Ending Story –  This movie traumatized so many children in the 80’s but it’s just pure uncut nostalgia that you can’t deny it. While it does have complex idea at play the philosophies in this story are lovely. Plus Falcor is awesome.

Number #4 

Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands & Winona Ryder as Kim Boggs Edward Scissorhands picture image

Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands & Winona Ryder as Kim Boggs

Edward Scissorhands – Edward Scissorhands effortlessly combines a lot of fairy tale tropes into a modern setting. It’s a beautiful bittersweet tale that is very emotionally charged.

Number #3

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry

Ever After – Let’s not pretend that this isn’t the best Cinderella movie. This movie gives story gives Cinderella a.k.a Danielle  the most acengy she can possible have while still being the Cinderella character and it does it well. All the Cinderella elements are there is someway but the are elevated in such a way that makes them make sense in the story and the world. Plus it’s a fun movie with great costumes.

 

Number #2

Cary Elwes as Westley and Robin Wright as Buttercup The Princess Bride picture image

Cary Elwes as Westley and Robin Wright as Buttercup

The Princess Bride – Another nostalgia bomb. I’m not sure would really understand a person if the didn’t like something about this movie, it literally has everything and it’s super entertaining and vastly quotable.

 

Number #1

Josette Day as Belle and Jean Marais as The Beast La Belle et la Bete Jean Cocteau 1946 picture image

Josette Day as Belle and Jean Marais as The Beast

La Belle et la Bete – There should be no surprise here, that the 1946 Belle et la Bete movie would be number one.  It’s just so perfect. It’s only flaw is that it knows it’s flawed and the story doesn’t make sense so it tells you to keep your childlike sensibility and just hits you with a dream-like movie.

I do hope the Disney Live-action remake will be on the level of the 1946 movie. Maybe when it comes out next year I will review it but till then the blog is moving on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Ever After: A Cinderella Story

This is how you do an re-imagining of a classic tale! It’s not bogged down in stupid prophecy or epic grand battles between good an evil. Nor does it promise to give characterized to the characters but makes them worse cough2015Cinderellacough. No, Ever After – A Cinderella Story gives a fun, girl-power focus to the classic tale while giving the other character something more than they had in the past.

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry

 

The story is tale for the most part as a story but there isn’t very active narrator. She just says a few lines and let’s the movie be. So young girl Danielle’s loving father brings home his new wife, Baroness Rodmilla along with her two daughters, Marguerite and Jacqueline. Right away, Rodmilla isn’t too fond on Danielle. After two weeks of teh father dies.

Tens years later, Danielle is eighteen and works the manor as a servant. One day while she is picking apples she sees a man selling her father’s horse and she pelt him with apples. The guy turns out to be the Prince fleeing from an arranged marriage. He gives her a lot of money to keep quiet. Danielle decides to use the money to pay back a servant that Rodmilla had sold to pay off her debts. When Rodmilla is unwilling to listen to Danielle about bring the servant back Danielle decides to pose as member of court. As that is happing the Prince, Henry get caught and brought back to the palace but not before he meets Leonardo Da Vinci and returns the horse to Danielle’s house.

As Danielle petitions for the release of the servant, Henry shows up and is impressed that Danielle quoted Thomas Moore’s Utopia, which a book that means a lot to Danielle as it was the last book her father brought home. When the Prince asks Danielle for her name she says that they only name to leave him with is Comtesse Nicole de Lancret, which was her mother’s name. Henry then assumes it’s Danielle’s name. The King also informs Henry that he has one month to find a wife or he will have or he will have to go through with the arranged marriage contract with Spain. His decision will be announced at a costume ball.

Danielle and Henry meet while Danielle is swimming. I should point out they has a cute snarky rapport. She calls him arrogant and he is charmed but her passion but they have good chemistry. As Danielle and Henry become closer with each encounter, Rodmilla is trying to get Marguerite to capture Henry’s attention. Rodmilla then learns that Danielle is the Comtesse the the whole court is talking about when she and Marguerite are chatting with the Queen. Rodmilla then lies and tells the queen that the Comtesse is engaged.

The nigh of the ball comes and Rodmilla locks Danielle up. To help get Danielle to the ball, Danielle’s friend gets Da Vinci to come to house bust her out and then he makes her wings. Danielle arrives at the ball and Rodmilla exposes he to Henry and he so angry that he can’t forgive her for lying. Danielle runs off and leaves her one her glass slippers.

The next day Rodmilla sells Danielle to a creepy rich dude. Henry then is seen getting married to the Spain Princess but the wedding doesn’t go through has either of them want it. Henry is then told Danielle was sold so he goes off to rescue her but girl saved herself. They two get married and Rodmilla and Marguerite are reduced to being laundry workers.

Anjelica Huston as Baroness Rodmilla de Ghent Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Anjelica Huston as Baroness Rodmilla de Ghent

Ever After presents itself as a historical-fiction movie to give the story some legitimacy. Grounding it in the context of the real world makes it seems realer and less fairy tale, which is kind of this movie’s purpose. So instead of fairy godmother mother we have Leonardo Da Vinci. It’s weird but  makes some level of sense, until you start researching dates.

Megan Dodds as Marguerite de Ghent and Melanie Lynskey as Jacqueline de Ghent Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Megan Dodds as Marguerite de Ghent and Melanie Lynskey as Jacqueline de Ghent

Since the story is left intact as a Cinderella story the details are what makes it different or give it interest. Outside of the decision to change the Godmother to Da Vinci or make the slipper as more an homage than a plot point or that the ball is a source of drama and confrontation, this movie is more of a character driven piece.

Unlike in the fairy tale version the prince has a character. It’s nothing like too complex, he just wants to be in love but he is charming enough. The stepmother had some  shades of grey in some moments but they did do too much with he feeling regarding her resent toward Danielle. She just comes off as vain and a social climber wanting her pretty daughter to get a high status. Really the most complicated character is Jacqueline. She is kind but wants to please her mother but you can see her frustration at her mother and sister’s attitude.

 

Drew Barrymore as Danielle Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Drew Barrymore as Danielle

Then we have Danielle and if you thought she was the most complicated character in this movie, OH you are wrong. She is interesting because she is charming but she is too prefect. She is pretty but no conceded, she’s is kind but not a push over, piss her off and she will cut you, seriously. She also smart as she is well read but she is pretty street smart too. She also charismatic. Really I’m surprised she left her stepmother mistreat her but in defense of that she really wanted her love and she cared about her home so that was the reason she dealt with it. Her flaw is that she doesn’t have an flaws. That makes her less interesting but she is endearing because she is a Cinderella character who is mistreated so you care for her plight.

Drew Barrymore as Danielle Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Drew Barrymore as Danielle

As far as the technicals go, it not that styically pretty. It’s most practical of a movie. The sets are all nice, the camera works is nice but the best part for me are the costumes. They are all very pretty. I really the Danielle’s ball and court gown. Though her work outfit was still not bad, it’s based on a painting.

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry Ever After: A Cinderella Story picture image

Drew Barrymore as Danielle and Dougray Scott as Prince Henry

Ever After – A Cinderella Story is a girl-power rendering of the fairy tale while giving the character some nice characterization and lets the leads fall in love based on their personality and not like hormones at a party.

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