A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes is one of my favorite Disney songs and Cinderella is certainly a classic in my book. I admit though, the tale itself was never my favorite. A girl is bullied and mistreated by her step family and then she falls in love with a man in one day. Sure it worked out for her with the guy being a prince and all, but still…she moved awfully fast. As a young woman I scoff and say, “I won’t wait for prince charming to come along or fall in love in one day. It’s not realistic.” However, with this latest version of the fairy tale produced by Disney…I see what Cinderella truly represents. It’s not just magic, a fancy prince finding her with a shoe, or dumb luck. It’s so much more…
[ SPOILER ALERT!!!]
Let me tell you…I cried five times in this movie and it’s because of how much despair there is before the happy ending. First Cinderella loses her mother, then she loses her father, then she is mistreated by her step family in her own home, also the prince’s father is dying, then he does die. So much pain and sorrow and most of it was in the first fifteen minutes of the film!
Still, through the gloom, Cinderella found reasons to smile and be…well…a Disney Princess! Lily James, in some moments could come off as a bit of an airhead, but as I continued to watch her smile, and cry, and smile, and cry; I began to see that she was merely doing what most of us in terrible moments should do. Find that silver lining and hold onto the good we possess. She wasn’t being a ditz, she was simply choosing the high road.
Don’t you see? When her parents died, when her stepmother and step sisters bullied her, when they tore her mother’s dress, or when the stepmother broke the glass slipper…Cinderella still held onto kindness toward others, even if it wasn’t shown to her. Something to remember in an age where bullying and trolling is such a huge issue. You have to learn to hold your ground and not lower to their level.
It isn’t only the fact that Cinderella remained kind, but also how courageous she was by keeping her chin up against those who would wrong her. Just as her mother told her,
“I want to tell you a secret that will see you through all the trials that life can offer. Have courage and be kind. Where there is kindness, there is goodness. And where there is goodness, there is magic.”
Pure class in a glass shoe! Speaking of which…that shoe being smashed by the stepmother could easily represent a dream being shattered to pieces. Dreams can so easily be broken. Do we look to the glittering remains or do we treasure the beautiful memories of the ball and continue dreaming?
Being a dreamer takes an amazing amount of courage. Your first dream, may not be where you end up, but dreamers still take the journey no matter the risk of heartbreak! We are brave enough to start a new dream, always holding onto that glimmer of the other glass slipper returning to us and getting that happily ever after. Walt Disney himself failed several times before he found success and look…the man’s dream came to life and luckily we all get to enjoy it and be inspired by it!
Remember these words?
“No matter how your heart is grieving, if you keep on believing, a dream that you wish will come true…”
I thought Disney’s 2015 adaptation of Cinderella was phenomenal! I thank Kenneth Branagh for his beautiful direction of the film, the writers, the rest of the film departments with beautiful sets and costumes and camera work, the orchestrations, the actors, and of course the Disney family for showing me a different side to this classic. I have a new respect for Cinderella and can see how she IS Disney. They both represent dreams coming true through adversity. Well done!