March 21, 2015
Comparing and Contrasting Two Stories of Cinderella
The Walt Disney film Cinderella (1950), is a fairy tale many people are familiar with. This story compared to the lesser mentioned (1869) Brothers Grimm “Cinderella” has their differences, but also have many similarities. First, the Disney adaptation began with a scene that included Cinderella, her father, and a woman with her two daughters. This scene implied that Cinderella’s mother had passed away and that her father had remarried. Later on in the film, Cinderella’s father became ill and passed away. This was different from the Grimm version because in that version of the fairy tale, Cinderella’s father continued to live throughout the rest of the story. The passing of Cinderella’s father left her under the custody of her step mother. From this point on, her new family treated her with tremendous amounts of insolence. For example, they kept her in a separated tower from the main level of the house. They also forced Cinderella to become a maid under her own roof. Her chores included having to scrub the wooden floors, serving her step mother and step sisters their meals, as well as having to care for their malevolent cat, Lucifer. They made it their responsibility to make Cinderella’s life miserable. Despite their cruel and unjust actions, Cinderella retained her free spirit and cordialness. Her amiability was what helped her to befriend the animals, especially the mice. One day, an invitation arrived from the kingdom. It had read that every eligible woman must attend a ball for the prince to find him the perfect bride. In this version of Cinderella, the ball only lasted for a day, whereas the 1869 version had been a festival within a period of three days. Upon hearing this news, the entire household had erupted in excited cheers, which included Cinderella. Her evil stepmother quickly declared that Cinderella could only attend if she found a suitable gown to wear to the ball and if she accomplished all of her household chores. Cinderella then returned to her room and retrieved her mother’s gown that she had given to her. She was beginning to share her plans with the animals to remake the dress into something more appropriate for the ball, when her step sisters barked orders to aide them in working with their gowns. The mice saw how difficult it would be for Cinderella to finish the dress with the amount of chores that were being added to her long list of duties. After making this observation, they gathered their friends and planned to work on Cinderella’s gown whilst she finished her chores. After she completed her chores, she made her way back to her room, seeming to have lacked her usual poise due to the fact that she thought she could no longer attend the special occasion because she did not have a dress. Her sadness, was quickly diminished when the animals brought her the new and improved dress. She slipped into the dress and rushed down the stairs to meet with her step family. They were shocked to have seen Cinderella in such a beautiful gown, but soon after, the step sisters realized something odd about the dress. They noticed that the dress was comprised of their unwanted fabric and pieces from their clothing and angrily tore them off of Cinderella’s dress. The evil stepmother then waved Cinderella farewell with the stepsisters behind her, satisfaction evident on all three of their expressions. Cinderella was then left overwhelmed with despair. She sought comfort under the large tree in the garden and wept. Suddenly, her very own fairy godmother appeared by her side. Unlike the Grimm adaptation, there was no fairy godmother. In fact, it had been a white bird perched on top of the tree that granted Cinderella her many gifts. With a wave of the fairy godmother’s wand, she turned a pumpkin into a carriage, the horse and the loving dog, Bruno, into coachmen, and lastly, the mice into majestic white stallions.