The Grade Book: “Cinderella”

cinderella film pic 2

The Grade Book: Cinderella


Plot: Ella lives with her cruel stepmother and stepsisters. Her luck begins to change after she meets a charming prince and has a magical night.

Director: Kenneth Branagh

Writer: Chris Weitz

Cast: Lily James, Cate Blanchett, Richard Madden, and Helena Bonham Carter

Genre: Romance, Family, Adventure

Running Time:  1 hour and 52 minutes

U.S. Release Date: March 13th, 2015

MPAA Rating: PG (for mild thematic elements)



(Lowest Grade Given: B+, Highest Grade Given: A+)

CONSENSUS: Cinderella is a lovely, old-fashioned live-action Disney film with a wonderful central performance by Lily James and meticulous direction by Kenneth Branagh.


Ian Bulaclac (WLF Fan)

Grade: B+

Disney just pushed all the right buttons with this one. It’s a great film, not just for girls but for everyone. Cate Blanchett is fantastic as the wicked stepmother, and Lily James and Richard Madden as Cinderella and the Prince just had great chemistry on screen and were perfect casting choices. A good, pleasant surprise.

Nicholas Casaletto (WLF Critic)

Grade: A

There is not much negative you can truly say about this film. Everything in it works, from its all-around terrific performances to its immaculate direction. You definitely can’t help but feel the Disney Magic as it sweeps you off your feet in this fantasy fairytale with a timeless feel that will be a welcoming addition to any family’s Disney movie collection.

Click Here for Nicholas Casaletto’s Written Review

Tony Estrada (WLF Critic)

Grade: A-

Cinderella is a magical way to celebrate the 65th anniversary of the 1950 animated film. Lily James is wonderful as Cinderella and really embodied the character, and the same goes to Cate Blanchett as the evil stepmother. The rest of the acting — except for the stepsisters, who were okay — is really good. The costume design looks incredible, the cinematography is lovely, and the direction by Kenneth Branagh is outstanding. Cinderella takes the story we know from the 1950 animated film but captures it in live-action form in the most respectable way.

Chad Gleason (WLF Critic)

Grade: A

Movies like this don’t get more perfect. It’s magical on a cinematic and technical level and one of the most amazing film experiences of the year so far. I feel like a kid all over again and am now in love with Lily James.

Click Here for Chad Gleason’s Video Review

Viktor Guizar (WLF Fan)

Grade: B+

A delightful re-imagining of the animated classic, Cinderella doesn’t care about innovating or giving the story a ”darker” tone, it only focuses in perfectly translating all the great elements that made the original animated movie a classic — and adds in a little more heart to the story. The result is a charming and captivating old-fashioned love story. The best of it’s kind for Disney so far.

Nick Iacobucci (WLF Critic)

Grade: A+

This film is gorgeously shot, wonderfully acted, and a treat for lovers of the Disney animated movie. Lily James is a revelation in the title role and Cate Blanchett looks like she’s having the time of her life.

Click Here for Nick Iacobucci’s Video Review

Zachary Marsh (WLF Critic)

Grade: A+

Even if you know the tale, the production design is amazing, the cinematography is gorgeous, the performances are stellar, and the characters and their storylines are well written! One of my favorite films of 2015 right now. No complaints here.

Click Here for Zachary Marsh’s Written Review

Austin Putnam (WLF Critic)

Grade: B+

Kenneth Branagh does a terrific job of bringing a Disney classic into live-action form. Lily James embodies Cinderella. I couldn’t have chosen someone better. My only gripes I had were that the stepsisters were not that great and the pacing here and there could have been better. Otherwise a great film. Take your kids to see it!

Click Here for Austin Putnam’s Video Review

Daniel Rester (WLF Critic)

Grade: B+

This is a beautiful and charming live-action Disney film with an old-fashioned mold. Lily James gives a star-is-born performance and leads an excellent cast while director Kenneth Branagh fills the screen with stunning images. The film is a bit too melodramatic at times and contains one scene that is overfilled with distracting CGI, but I have little problems with it overall as the virtues outweigh the negatives.

Click Here for Daniel Rester’s Written Review

Bryan Sudfield (WLF Critic)

Grade: B+

One of the biggest surprises in years! I really liked this movie. Kenneth Branagh’s direction is superb. The performances are excellent, especially Lily James and Cate Blanchett (who stole every scene she was in). I love the costumes and sets, and the visuals were pretty good. My only problems with the film are that the stepsisters weren’t that great and the pacing was a little sloppy here and there. But, overall, this is a strong film that you guys shouldn’t miss. Disney has finally made a great live-action film based on one of their animated classics!

Click Here for Bryan Sudfield’s Video Review


What did you think of Cinderella? Which of our We Live Film critics or fans do you agree with? Post your comments down below and let us know!

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