‘Cinderella’ – the animated classic on Disney+

“A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes,” according the classic song from Cinderella (1950), Disney’s adaptation of the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale.

It’s softened and sweetened from the Grimm original, of course. This Cinderella is a plucky, resilient young woman who suffers under the abuse of her wicked stepmother and her snotty stepsisters, who have turned the bright, sunny young woman into their servant. Cinderella has the mice on her side, of course, a squeaky army of scurrying do-gooders, and she has a fairy Godmother who swoops down to give her a magic transformation into the belle of the ball, where she wins the heart of the bachelor prince.

This bright, lively little musical fairy tale is from the second half of Disney’s classic animation period; it doesn’t have the delicacy and character of such rich classics as “Snow White” and “Bambi,” but it has a bright, clean style, vivid images, and strong storytelling.

Disney animation veterans Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson, and Hamilton Luske share directing credit, and all three would go on to collaborate on such classics as Alice in Wonderland (1951), Peter Pan (1953), and Lady and the Tramp (1955).

It earned Oscar nominations for score, original song (for the bouncy “Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo”), and sound recording and won a special jury prize at Venice. It was added to the National Film Registry in 2018.

Rated G

Streams on Disney+ in a new 4k restoration

Also on Blu-ray and DVD and on SVOD through Amazon Video, iTunes, GooglePlay, Vudu and/or other services. Availability may vary by service.
Cinderella [Blu-ray]
Cinderella [4K UHD + Blu-ray]
Cinderella [DVD]

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The 1950 classic gets the high definition upgrade in a “Diamond Edition.” New to this edition is an alternate opening sequence, the original short “Tangled ever After” (with the characters of “Tangled”), and a couple of breezy, inessential featurettes. The supplements from the previous DVD “Platinum Edition,” including the documentary “From Rags to Riches: The Making of Cinderella,” featurettes, deleted songs and more, are in the Classic Backstage Disney section.


Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. He writes the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website, and his work appears at RogerEbert.com, Turner Classic Movies online, The Film Noir Foundation, and Parallax View.

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